Saturday, November 26, 2016

Tapestry Crochet Bag - Cat and Fishes

This "Cat & Fishes" is one of my first tapestry crochet bag.  This is a one-off, no repeat design.  I drew and graphed the pattern, pulling from a number of sources of inspiration (see below). Unlike other tapestry crochet and also unlike Wayuu bags, this tapestry bag is done in the extremely strong and dense knit-sc stitch which produces the intriguing stockinette-looking stitch. I have included lots of metal bag hardware - coz' they always look so good on a bag, don't they?!!

Cat & Fishes Tapestry Crochet Bag (CH0417)

This tapestry crochet bag is a one-off, one-time ClearlyHelena design. It is very sturdy and hardy (made in knit-single crochet stitch).

Specifications & Features

  • base diamater: approx. 27cm / 10.6in
  • height: 40cm / 15.7in
  • very strong and sturdy large holdall bag
  • can be worn over shoulder or across body
  • bag strap with adjustable length
  • classy, secure metal eyelets for drawstring
  • hand-crocheted matching drawstring
  • hand beaded strap stabilizer (Delica beads)
  • fully lined with internal pockets
  • magnetic button on pocket
  • musical bell & red turquoise bud for drawstring/cord ending
  • hand beaded drawstring stopper (Delica beads)
  • strong hardware for strap buckle, ring, and rivet
  • reinforced round mandala crocheted base

Core Materials
  • strong acrylic yarn
  • red turquoise bead cap (flower bud)
  • metal buckle
  • metal grommets & eyelets
  • cotton lining

status: g650 ML0 et

I have included grommets for the drawstring to offer easier opening and closing. There is a shinny, red beaded cord stopper to provide more features. You can also lightly tie a bow to close. The handmade drawstring cord ends with a charming red turquoise flower bud with handwired bells.

This bag can be worn over the shoulder or across body. The bag strap is adjustable.

Bag is fully lined and comes with an inner pocket and a magnetic closure.

The colours are bright, funky, whimsical, happy and with a touch of cheeky retro.

Bag has been protected with a water-shield treatment, making the surface water-repellant. (This should last for many months.)

  You can view details of these features in the photos below.


  • Body: tapestry crochet with knit single-crochet (aka waistcoat stitch) as the main stitch
  • Base: overlay crochet adapted from "Spanish Mandala" design byTatsiana Kupryianchyk from LillaBjornCrochet
  • Shoulder strap: using strong, non-stretchy strap-sc stitch
  • Drawstring Cord: Duo Sided Crochet Cord
  • Cord Stopper and Strap Stabilizer: bead weaving (Peyote stitch)

Sources of Inspiration

The general inspiration for the tapestry crochet bag was from looking at the many beautiful Wayuu bags.

Bag Base: Overlay crochet technique. Instead of the standard tapestry crochet base, I decided to try a  mandala. This Mandala was adapted from  Spanish Mandala by LillaBjornCrochet.

Cat Graphed Pattern: (the original link is no longer available) I think I saw this graph on Pinterest at some stage. I changed the graphed eyes to make them look at the fishies!

Fishes: This was inspired by a tapestry pattern I found on Pinterest. At the time of this writing, this pattern no longer seems available but it was previously available from emilypeacocktapestry Etsy store where she offers needlepoint and cross stitch kits. I only based my graphing roughly on the inspiration derived from her happy fishes.