Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Spring Flower Bag

Thank you so much for all your kind comments on my last post, especially for your sympathy vis à vis the depleted-in-number bantams. The few remaining chickabiddy girls seem a bit lost and lonely but otherwise have settled back to normal life, post-trauma. I expect we will get some additional friends for them as the Spring wears on and once we have installed some more robust perimeter fencing (searchlights and watch towers optional). For the time being, I am trying not to be paranoid about checking their whereabouts in the undergrowth every time I can't spot them and enjoying the Spring sunshine and the bright hopefulness it gives everything.

As in nature, so in craft. My shawl in soft pink and grey continues to grow gently, a row here and a row there, but it's taken a back seat this last week against a bit of brighter hooky work that has somehow seemed in keeping with what's outside, where the daffodils and primroses, violets and scyllas have turned their faces to the sun and smiled happily. Like a peep?

It's a smallish bag - the body of it measures approximately 29 cm by 23 cm / 10" by 9". So not really big enough for yarny projects on the go, or for holding a lot of clobber, but a frivolous Spring sunshine handbag. Big enough for keys, purse and a handkerchief and not much else. When the days are as Spring-like as this, I find I don't want always to carry a lot of stuff. Sometimes it's nice to travel light and feel unburdened.

The front and back of the bag are similar but not identical. I love the way the different colour combinations seem to evoke the flowers that are out at the moment so effectively.

I got the idea for the bag from Dragana's lovely version here and, like her, I've used Karen's gorgeous lily-pad flower pattern that you can find here , converting the original hexagons to squares as Dragana did. (You can find Dragana's instructions for how to do this, in her post that I've linked to.) The flowers were such fun to hook up and I love the three-dimensionality of them. They're made in a nice light-weight acrylic / cotton mix yarn, on a 4mm hook.

Originally, (and with some considerable trouble, I have to say!), I inserted a lining with a recessed zip in it and it all looked quite professional and fixed up but I got cold feet about not being able to see the lining properly and so I replaced it with this simpler version, without any fastening, that you can see here.

I've kept the zipped lining though and might just make another bag to give away in which to use it. We'll see.

To go with the bag I fancied making a flowery coin-purse to match. (As you do!)

This is based on Cécile Balladino's pattern in Crochet Bohème but I had to adapt it a bit, partly because the pattern was not all that clear in places, (although it may be my inadequate French that's at fault rather than the pattern). The original purse does not have a lining but I wanted one (to match the bag, of course!) and actually, it needs one because the layered flower is quite gappy and you'd quickly lose your money through the crochet, without it. The clasp came from here and although it was a mite tricky to sew the purse edges into the frame, it's worked nicely in the end. You can get glue-in purse frames too, if you prefer to avoid the sewing, but I felt the sew-in frames gave more control. Mrs T and tubes of strong glue are erratic partners (to put it kindly!) so trying to glue the fiddly edges of crochet and lining to the metal, I felt, I could have come unstuck, if you will forgive the pun!

And if you are thinking my coins are exceptionally clean and shiny, you would be right because, yes, I confess it, I have indulged in a little money-laundering and put them through the dishwasher! I know, I know! But I have a thing about filthy lucre and the idea of my pale green Spring lining becoming blackened and stained with greasy, dirty coins was a step too far! Goodness knows what will happen when anyone gives me any change! I fear, my shiny, clean coins will have to be only a temporary fixture!

Pro tem however, everything is clean and pristine and bright and Spring-like to boot!

Wishing you a bright and happy week too!

E x 


  1. I love the bag E and that you Spring cleaned you're coins, as for the coin purse I'm a little bit in love with it. Gorgeous bright sunning pictures, we have so many of the same Spring blooms in the Summerhouse garden have a lovely week
    Clare xx

  2. How beautifully vibrant and spring like. Your purse looks delightfully old fashioned and I can imagine you standing in a traditional butcher or baker, picking out your clean coins to pay! I always think it best not to dwell on the past history of coins and notes, particularly as some are filthy but must admit I've never considered putting them through the dishwasher. I remember soaking them in coca-cola for some experiment once.

  3. I have tried to comment on your posts several times, but it never seems to work. Technical gremlins…
    There's always something to say, though. In this case, apart from cheering me up with its pretty flower photos and lovely bag and purse, your post really made me laugh. It's never occurred to me to put my coins through the dishwasher but I'm quite tempted now!

  4. Perfect bag and purse to ring in the new Spring season! The colours are simply wonderful, so happy and jolly...and I must say that coin purse is just the sweetest little thing I've ever seen! Chrissie x

  5. So beautiful! Love the colours you have used!

  6. Wow! Gorgeous! You did a great job! That little coin purse is also adorable!

    xxx Dragana

  7. Gorgeous, bright and beautiful bag. You did a fantastic job with it.

  8. Love the bag...very Spring like
    Hugs x

  9. Oh, my goodness.....your confession about washing the coins makes me think that Mrs. Tittlemouse is a very appropriate title for your blog:) I am very sorry about your chickens. This past year we have experienced a lot of pet attrition and are now down to two dogs. And one of the dogs is new because we lost our little dog last summer under sad circumstances. I am thinking of you and hoping that your circumstances change for the better. xx

  10. wow!!! what a gorgeous bag........i love it. i love the spring flower,too.
    hugs regina

  11. Hi, I love your blog, is beauty, I love the colors, I love your crochet, visit my blog too,hugs from Brazil.


Thank you so much for taking the time to visit me at Mrs TT's and comment. I love to read what you write.