Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Replicating an old purse...

So I had this purse (on the right) that I picked up at a thrift store many years ago, I used it for a few years and finally retired it to the closet in the hopes of one day being able to figure out how it was done and make a new one. This was long before I knew how to decrease or increase and flowers were way beyond my comprehension. Now that I think about it, I have no idea what kept me from throwing it away, it was more advanced than anything I had ever done at the time.

Well lucky for me I didn't cause now I have a little more knowledge about crochet than I had back then. In my "I know stuff" attitude, I took a few brief glances at it and proceeded to make my own. I counted how many stitches I needed to get up to on  the last round of the bottom in order to get the proper amount for the shell part, I failed to count how many rounds "they" did on the bottom, so naturally I got more rounds and a more pointier bottom instead of short and flat. Yeah, my head and reality sometimes don't match! haha

I clearly didn't stop to think about what size hook they might have used AND take into consideration that I tend to crochet tighter than most, I just grabbed my F hook and got busy.  I guess I was thinking that the body part was going to be a breeze, it was the flowers that were going to give me trouble. Boy did I get that backwards!

I also didn't realize till after I was nearly done that the old bag had a tag in it ... 100% paper. Yup you read that right..PAPER! I was shocked and curious, I tore off a piece from where it was already falling apart. Sure enough it was 2 strands of twisted paper, twisted together to form a single strand. I had no idea they could do that! Pretty cool!

Anyway back to what I was talking about. I managed to get the flowers done but not the same as the old bag. I just couldn't bring myself to tying off on each petal. Talk about a pain, that would drive me nuts! So I made up my own flower. Probably not new to the wide web of designs but I didn't cheat and look up a pattern, so it's new to me! LOL! It took me a few trys to figure out how to do a decent looking leaf and still try to keep the same size of the originals. Tedious little buggers!

Overall I like the purse I came up with but am not thoroughly happy with it. So in my "I CAN do this, daggummit!" attitude...I have painstakingly counted each stitch on each round on the bottom and  wrote it down. Let me just say...the weirdest stitch pattern I have ever come across. Increases in odd places, no rhyme or rhythm.  I have managed to replicate the bottom to almost the exact size with a G hook, it will never be the exact size cause well I don't have paper yarn, I have cotton! LOL!

Because I have cotton and it is considerably thicker than the paper, I am having difficulty getting the shell to work out. The originals shell is made up of 4 dc, ch 1, 4 dc...BUT they are nearly 3 cm high! I upped the hook to an H to get the height but still ended up slightly shorter than needed. I figured "okay, up the dc to a tr", this did get me the height needed but still the end result of the first round turned out wavy from overcrowding. Rip it out again and try decreasing the 4 tr's to 3 tr's. This came out okay but still looks wrong. Problem is... my triples suck! I tend to get too much space inbetween the tr, if I knew why, I would fix it but I don't know why. My only other option is to try to do a 3 cm tall dc, not just one but about a thousand of them! On the other hand I think I will stick to my stubby little just under 2 cm dc's!!!  LOL!

I fear this project is going to be altered a bunch of times till I'm happy with the final result. OR FROGGED!


  1. Wow Heather...I am so impressed with your attempt. To me it looks fabulous, but I hear what you are saying about re-doing it until you get it right....the purse looks lovely as you have done it although I see when you say the "lacy pattern" part is not as long as the original....but with so much work that you have put into it, can you not just leave it at that and then it will be your own design. I would cry if I had to frog that.....I am also a person who loves perfection in all that I do, but at times I have had to let it go. What a fantastic challenge you undertook....well done whether you frog it or not ( hope not) kindest regards Sue x

  2. You did a great job! I wouldn't frog it, I'd leave it like it is, it looks really nice. Even though it's not an identical copy, the purse is very cute and totally useable. Personally I rarely frog my prototypes, but keep them so I can remember what I did and immediately see how to improve them.
    Happy crocheting!