Update: The pattern for The Calico Bag is now available for download as a PDF file.
See The Calico Bag Free Pattern.
There is also a Crochet-Along for The Calico Bag at CAL: Calico Bag (Turning chains and changing color)
and CAL: Calico Bag (The handle, assembly and finishing).
Nature is an important source of techniques and ideas for patterns and color schemes. Here, I turn to my calico cat, Kitty2, for inspiration. She is now over a year old. We found her in early October last year under a tree outside our apartment, apparently abandoned. She was was inside an open plastic bag indicating that someone had thrown her over the fence and fell right under the tree.
Now, Kitty2 is a gigantic cat! I took several photos of her and turned her coat markings into a pattern for a crocheted bag. Below is a photo of the finished bag.
The body of the bag is made from two sections, front and back, of the same size but different markings. The bag is worked in single crochet, except for a small section where the ginger and white colors mesh (as shown above) where I used front post double crochet alternating with single crochet. It is also possible to make the alternating colors in sc stitches only.
The photo below shows the other side of the bag, worked entirely in single crochet. The handle of the bag is a crocheted cylinder stuffed with cotton.
The side seams of the bag was crocheted together with single crochet, and the handle was sewn to the bag.
Here is the sketch I made to determine the color pattern for the bag.
I would like to make this purse again, this time, paying more attention to the methods that I should use in changing color in crochet. I used the stranding (or stranded) method (carrying the yarn across the back of the work) in the project, and have found it to be very messy and difficult especially when it came to making the purse handle: it was just too difficult changing colors in such a small piece. Perhaps the intarsia method (as used in Tunisian crochet) would be cleaner and easier – then that would be the opportunity to learn Tunisian, and eventually,Tapestry crochet.
Note: No animals were harmed in making the Calico Bag.