Larger Than Life Bag = Larger Than Life Love

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LARGER THAN LIFE BAG by Cecily Keim, Interweave Crochet, Spring 2007. Done as part of Cecily's Larger Than Life CAL, with additional inspiration from the Flickr group.

I used Lily Sugar & Cream, 7 or 8 colors from the dishrag stash, mostly leftovers.  Handles are drapery tie-backs found at the fabric store -- an inspired idea that I blatantly stole from Margene.  I bought two maroon and two black, using one of each color per side and staggering them so that a handle is sewn at the corner of each crocheted square -- giving lots of support for this large, heavy, cotton bag.

Going for an old-fashioned granny square look, I bordered each square with a row of single crochet in black and seamed them together (in black), I then worked a row of single crochet around each completed side.

After a failed attempt at crocheting and sewing on the gusset (it was too short), I picked up gusset stitches on one side of the bag with a long, circular needle and knit in garter stitch for 3 inches or so. I then picked up and knit the same number of stitches around the other side, and worked a three-needle bind-off to join the two sides together. Voila!

The fabrics for the double lining are upholstery and drapery remnants, chosen with the aid of my lovely daughter Alison, and they couldn't be more perfect.  I shudder to think what I was considering and what I might have brought home without Ali's keen eye.

At this point, it's just an open tote -- no zipper, snaps or buttons.  I'm going to use it for a little while and decide what (if anything) I'd like to do.

I got bogged down with the finishing -- as is the case with almost any project -- but I love this bag. I have not tired of the squares and the colors make me happy.

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Oh, now I don't remember where I found this:  CNN Favorite Pastimes survey -- Knitters, represent!



WOnderful bag! I love the strap idea. I usually end up putting a closure on bags, for security because I end up needing to put my wallet in there at some point.
I did my part for the survey. Knitting was #3 on the list of past times according to New York Times magazine, before cooking and gardening, just behind sports and sex!


It's gorgeous! Old-fashioned granny squares, yes, but the colors and finishing may it look very high-fashion. Congratulations on a beautiful bag.


Your bag looks great. I can't believe how beautiful everyone's Larger then Life bags are. Not quite enough for me to go to the dark side to make one but lovely enough for me to admire;)


You did such a great job of finishing! I'm glad my idea worked for you, too. Who wants to sew floppy cloth handles? The lining is so cool...nice work on both your parts. ;-)


I went to CNN and represented. More knitters need to do the same!!


The bag is awesome, Vicki! I hope you enjoy it for a long time to come. I already represented at CNN.


Fantastic job on the bag. I love the lining and handles.


I've been having a hail of a time commenting from home. Sorry. The bag is just gorgeous! I'm so happy that my knitting friends are enjoying the best of crochet, I validates my passion for it. You did great on this! It looks like something I'd find in a nice shop.


The lining is awesome. I love the bag - I'd leave it as an open tote, myself.


Squeal! It's beautiful!


FANTABULOUS! I LOVE IT! (And I love you.)


It turned out amazing Vicki!!! I love how the accent fabric shows at the top of the bag panels. Your colors make me happy too! :)

ann & cara

Vicki that bag is fabulous!! you did a great job with the lining and are inspiring me to dust of my sewing machine - I'm still stuck in that phase.


Your bag is the BEST! All the care you took with it really shows - it's really stunning. I loved the poll too - no surprise, the things I like doing are not shared by the general population, but I'll bet knitters show up shortly!


Your bag is gorgeous. I love the colors you chose, Vicki. Well worth the time spent and I'm sure you will enjoy using it.


Vicki - I am so jealous. That bag is G.O.R.G.E.O.U.S.! You did a fantastic job. I wanted to make it too, but then I remembered, I don't crochet. Hehehe. I hope you knock 'em dead when you wear it out and about.


the bag rocks!


Great bag, Vicki. The lining really accents the bag.


Fabulous job and I love that lining - it just made it!


It looks fabulous!! Really!

Bonne Marie

WOW! That bag is GORGEOUS -- I adore your color choices and combos -- it will last for years and only get better with time. The lininig is the icing on the cake...

YOU are a Master!

kristi and otis

Wow - now that's cute and makes me want to pick up crochet...almost ;)


Love, LOVE it! Yours came out just great. I've loved all the "Larger" bags I've seen which means major kudos to the designer for making such a versatile pattern. :)

You'll love it - I've been using the heck out of mine. :)


It's beautiful! The lining and handles make it even more beautiful. Nice work!


It's really beautiful Vicki!


It's great, Vicki. I will finish mine, I will finish mine, I will finish mine...


Wow wow wow!!! The bag is impressive enough, but the lining is so great! It's almost enough to send me to my sewing machine. Almost. Fabulous job, Vicki.


Gorgeous bag - the lining is perfect.


OH I LOVE THAT!!!! I am very drawn to these bags....will I make one? I'm not sure. But I do love them anyway.

Well done with the beautiful colors and the gorgeous lining!


Wow - I love how your bag turned out. I was inspired by your in-progress shots on Flickr to add a sc border to my blocks, too. I think it really ties everything together, and will make seaming easier. But, it's my first crochet project, so what the hell do I know?! Anyhow, thanks for the good ideas (and I love your mosaic table!).


OMG I just love your bag. All the little details make is just perfect! You gotta love the three needle bind off. :)


Great bag! I love knitting bags, but you're inspiring me to try a crocheted one. Your solution for the gusset was really clever!

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