Crochet

Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag

October 25, 2019
The Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag in green lime with the zipper open showing some apples

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Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag

Want to make your own reusable shopping bags? Then check out this absolute beginner pattern for a Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag! Made with an environmental yarn, make as many as you want for yourself or as a gift for your friends and spread the word about reducing plastic!

Inspiration

While having dinner with friends in Portugal, we started talking about the environment and the things we were doing to reduce plastic in our lives. We commented that going to the supermarket and picking things that weren’t packed in plastic was still quite challenging. One situation that quickly came to my mind was all of the small plastic bags that are used when buying fruits or vegetables. I have to admit that sometimes I still use those. 🙁 Shame on me!

But this is a situation where I can do something about it! Using reusable bags for your groceries is such an easy thing to do. It’s a simple gesture and that can definitely make a difference! So why not make my own bags, specifically for fruits and vegetables? And this is not a complicated project, so what have I been waiting for? This crochet eco-friendly fruit & veggie bag was going to happen NOW!

Project

Yarn

I try to be environmentally conscious with my yarn choices. I try as much as possible to favor yarns and yarn companies that are mindful of this topic and that strive to do something about it. Take my Upcycled Denim Top for example. That’s why for this project I turned to a Portuguese brand, Rosarios4.

Rosarios4 is a Portuguese family business that produces yarn and is responsible for the complete process, meaning they do everything from spinning the yarn to dispatching it! One of the things that called to my attention is the effort the company does to reduce its ecologic footprint. And one of the results of these efforts is a yarn collection that privileges natural fibers and dyes from animal or vegetable origin, the “Eco-friendly Collection”.

This seemed absolutely aligned with the purpose of my project, so I decided to try their yarns. I used their Lisboa yarn, which is a 100% mercerized cotton in green for veggies!

A skein of Rosarios4 Lisboa in green

Design

Since this is for fruits and vegetables, I decided on a mesh, but not a very open one to ensure that everything says inside. I also wanted it to be a little thicker to ensure that the products inside had a “softer” surface and wouldn’t get all bruised. And in case something does get smashed… the cotton will absorb it and I’ll just put it in the washer. Oh! And a zipper!! It needs a zipper to make sure nothing gets out! 😀

Detail of the top and zipper of the Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Ba

Now, I will be completely honest with you. To get all this, I used roughly 3 skeins of this cotton yarn. At 1.75 oz/ 50g a skein, this is not a lightweight bag. You should not weight your fruits & veggies inside it! Nevertheless, that was not my goal. The purpose of this project was to make a strong and smooth bag to put fruits and vegetables inside. One that I could use and reuse, wash and use again. One that will last me a lifetime so that I don’t have to pick up a plastic bag ever again! And I think I made it. I might even do one or two more and probably in different sizes to make sure I have all the reusable bags I need!

I hope that my green reusable eco-friendly bag inspires you, even if not to make one, at least to find alternatives to go plastic-free! 😉

Overview of the complete Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag

Pattern

  • You can buy the ad-free, printable PDF pattern HERE!
  • PIN this pattern for later HERE!
  • Add this pattern to your Ravelry queue HERE!

Description

Make your own reusable shopping bags with this absolute beginner pattern for a Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag! Made with an environmental conscious yarn, make as many as you want for yourself or as a gift for your friends and spread the word about reducing plastic!

Skill Level

  • Basic

Have in Hand

  • 3 skeins of Rosarios4 Lisboa (136 yd/ 125 m) in color 31
  • US size D (3.0 mm) crochet hook
  • 11.75’’/ 30 cm zipper in similar yarn color
  • Thread
  • Stitch markers, sewing needle, measuring tape, scissors

Gauge

  • 29 sts x 18 rows: 4”/10 cm

Finished Measures

  • Width: 12.25’’/31 cm
  • Height: 11.5’’ / 29 cm

Abbreviations (US Terms)

  • ch: chain
  • ch-# sp: chain-# space
  • dc:  double crochet
  • sl st: slip stitch
  • st(s): stitch(es)

Notes

  • The bag is worked by making a foundation chain and crocheting in rounds from that chain then sewing a zipper to the top.
  • Mesh is obtained by making repeats of dc and ch 1 and shifting the repeat pattern 1 st per each round.
  • The shift in the pattern will cause a somewhat visible diagonal seam.
  • The first ch 2 counts as a dc. I use only 2 ch for a dc, instead of the traditional 3. This is because when joining, my 3 chains are too big compared to my dcs, so I use only 2.
  • Join with a sl st in the 3rd st of the beginning chain. This way you will start each round from the ch-1 sp.
  • Before assembly block your piece. Let the bag fold naturally and block to help it maintain form.
  • To hold the zipper in place I’ve used thread, but you can also use pins.
  • I’ve sewn the bag with the yarn I used for the project, but you can use a different thread if you prefer.
The Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag with apples coming from inside it

Crochet Eco-Friendly Fruit & Veggie Bag

Ch 88.

Round 1: ch 2 (counts as dc), 1 dc into 3rd st from hook. Dc across until last st of the foundation chain, 3 dc in last st. Turn your work to keep crocheting on the other side of the foundation chain. Dc across. Don’t forget to make one more dc in the st where the ch 2 and the other dc are. Sl st to join. <178>

Round 2: ch 3 (counts as dc + ch 1), sk 1 st, dc in next st (corresponds to 3rd dc), * ch 1, sk 1, dc. Repeat from * to st before the end of round. Ch 1 and sl st in 3rd ch from the ch 3 from beginning. <178>

Round 3: ch 3 (counts as dc + ch 1), sk 1 st, * dc in ch-1 sp, ch 1, sk 1 st. Repeat from * to end of round. Sl st in 3rd ch from the ch 3 from beginning. <178>

Round 4 – 49: Repeat Round 3.

Round 50: ch 2 (counts as dc), dc across. Sl st, fasten off and weave in ends. <178>

Assembly

Lay your bag with the right side facing out. Mark the stitches where the bag folds naturally and ensure that you have the same numbers of stitches on both sides. On the folding edges that will not be sewn to the zipper, ensure that you have an uneven number of stitches.

With the zipper closed, place it so that it is centered with the bag opening.

The zipper aligned with the opening of the bag.

To hold the zipper in place, you will sew it first with some thread. With the zipper closed, sew one side of the zipper to the round of dcs.

One side of the zipper lined to the opening of the bag

Opening the zipper as you work and making sure that it is working, sew the other side.

On the edges, ensure that you have an uneven number of stitches that will not be sewn to the zipper. Now using the yarn from the project, sew the sides of the zipper to the top of your dcs.

Sewing the zipper to the bag

To close the gap between the edges of the bag and the zipper, pull up a loop from the stitch where the bag folds.

Pulling up a loop from the edge of the bag

Then, sl st through the back loops of the dcs on each edge to hide the zipper until you reach the stopper. 

Slip stitching to close the gap between the edges of the bag and the zipper

To make a clean edge and hide the stopper, sl st on the back loop of the next unworked st on one side of the bag opening. Ch 1 and sl st the back loop of the corresponding unworked st of the other side of the opening.

Final details to close the bag

Sl st, fasten off and weave in ends.

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