You know the most delicious thing about summer? SUNFLOWERS! A sunflower is the last little showoff of summer, busting out in all it’s cheerful glory just as the days are getting shorter and summer is transitioning to fall. And THIS! This sweet summer sunflower bag just might be the best thing of all.
I’m in love with this sunflower bag. There. I’ve said it. And I’ve probably said that a lot. But I can’t help myself. There’s something about taking granny square variations and putting them together into a bag that just makes me happy.
All this sunshiney goodness just warms my heart. Let’s talk about this beauty for a few minutes before diving in. First up.. the granny square. This is the simple Starburst Granny we learned last week worked in summery colors in Hobby Lobby’s I Love This Cotton yarn. I fell in love with this yarn when I used it for the Crochet Octopus pattern. It’s a great purse yarn because it’s not too bulky and with a G6/4mm crochet hook it works up nicely. It’s not too “holey” so it’s an easy bag to leave unlined, which is how I’ve worked mine. But you could certainly line it later if you wish.
For whatever reason, working 13 granny squares does not seem like much work at all. Your favorite beverage. Your best chair (recliner, I’m talking to YOU!) Flip on Netflix. We are watching all episodes of Arrow (hello…where has THIS show been all my life)! And before you know it…the squares are done.
Since the squares are the star of the show, they are simply sewn together and then.. an easy border/handle! While I loved the fancy handles and bling on the Boho Boss Bag and Titan Tapestry Bag and the fancy crocheted spiral handle on the Daisy Mae Bag, there’s something refreshing about a darling bag made entirely out of simple crochet stitches. Am I right?!
Settle in and let’s get going on this Sweet Summer Sunflower Bag!
Sweet Summer Sunflower Bag
Here is what you will need:
- US G6/4mm crochet hook Did you know you can purchase my go-to hooks on Amazon?)
- Tapestry needle and scissors
- Worsted weight cotton yarn. Sample used Hobby Lobby I Love This Cotton, 3.5 oz (1 skein) Ivory, 1.75 oz. Curry (yellow), 1 oz. Antique Gold (caramel color) and .75 oz Brown. I used almost every bit of the ivory yarn. You may want to buy an extra skein if your gauge is larger than mine or plan to stripe the handles if you run out of ivory yarn.
- Tapestry needle and scissors
Resources and tutorials you may find helpful in following this pattern: Crochet Abbreviations, US to UK Crochet Conversion Chart. Find links to stitches on the “Tutorial” menu: Getting Started will show basic stitches used in many patterns and Crochet Stitch Dictionary shows our growing collection of crochet stitch tutorials.
Puff Stitch: Yarn over, insert hook into next stitch and pull up a loop to the height of a double crochet (3 loops on hook). Then yarn over again and insert hook into the same stitch and pull up another loop ( 5 loops on hook). Yarn over again, insert hook into the same space and pull up another loop. (7 loops on hook). Pull yarn through all loops. Chain 1 to lock in the stitch.
Bobble Stitch: Yarn over, insert hook into space between 2 puff stitches and pull up a loop. Yarn over and pull through 2 loops (this leaves 2 loops on hook). Make 3 more incomplete double crochet stitches. There are now 5 loops on the hook. Yarn over and pull through all 5 loops. Chain 2 to lock in the bobble stitch. Here’s a detailed bobble stitch tutorial.
Crochet Sunflower Bag is approximately 11″ wide by 19″ tall (including handles). However if yours turns out bigger or smaller it will still be a lovely. Remember if it is larger, you may need to purchase more of the main color yarn or be willing to change colors in the handle.
Crochet Sunflower Square (make 13):
To start, make 13 crochet sunflower squares. For a more detailed tutorial, follow the instructions for the Starburst Granny square here. Shortened instructions are provided here as well.
R1: Using center color and a G hook, ch 5 and join with a slip stitch to the 1st chain to form a loop. Ch 3 (counts as first dc), make 15 dc into the loop. Sl st to top of 1st stitch in the row to join. Fasten off 1st color. (16 st)
R2: This row is comprised of puff stitches (described above). First, attach the 2nd color in any stitch and chain 2. *Yarn over, insert hook into same stitch as joining and and pull up a loop to the height of a double crochet (3 loops on hook). Then yarn over again and insert hook into the same stitch and pull up another loop ( 5 loops on hook). Yarn over again, insert hook into the same space and pull up another loop. (7 loops on hook). Pull yarn through all loops. Chain 1 to lock in the stitch. First puff stitch made.
Make puff stitches in all the stitches in the previous row as follows: Yarn over, insert hook into next stitch and pull up a loop to the height of a double crochet (3 loops on hook). Then yarn over again and insert hook into the same stitch and pull up another loop ( 5 loops on hook). Yarn over again, insert hook into the same space and pull up another loop. (7 loops on hook). Pull yarn through all loops. Chain 1 to lock in the stitch. At end of round, sl st to top of 1st puff stitch. Fasten off Color 2. (16 puff stitches).
R3: This row is worked in bobbles (described above). You can start the row in one of 2 ways. Either attach color 3 in between 2 stitches and chain 3. Or start with a standing stitch. I started with a slip stitch of the new color on my hook, carefully held a yarn over and worked the first bobble. Continue to work bobbles across the row into the spaces in the previous row. At end of row, slip stitch to top of 1st bobble stitch. (16 bobble stitches) Fasten off color 3.
R4: Join color 4 in any space in previous round. Chain 3 (counts as 1st dc). 2 dc in same space. *In next space, work all of the following: (3 triple crochet, ch 2, 3 triple crochet). Corner made. 3dc in next space, 3 hdc in next space, 3 dc in next space*. Repeat from * 3 more times. Then work 3 dc in next space, 3 hdc in last space and join with a sl st to top of 1st dc in row. (I like to use an invisible join for a nice finish instead of the sl stitch join). Fasten off yarn and weave in the ends.
Sew Crochet Sunflower Squares Together:
Time to sew the squares together! Lay squares out in rows according to the diagram below. Whip stitch squares together. Rotate work so it looks like the below diagram. Then, find the center bottom square in the middle of the work and fold up so that the 2 top ends are meeting. Fold in the squares that form the sides of the bag and sew those squares to the opposite side (front or back) and continue to sew the squares together that make up the lower sides of the bag. Repeat the process on the opposite side of the bag.
At this point, the blocks of your granny square purse are attached everywhere except the upper half of the two squares on either side of the bag. This portion forms the opening of the sunflower bag. You will notice that this looks a bit like two “mountains” with a peaks at the top where the handles will go. And valleys where the edge dips down: in the center front and center back and at either side.
Crochet the Border and Handles:
Let’s talk about the border and the handles on this sunflower bag for a moment before we dig in. I feel that it’s really important to be a bit flexible when working the border and handles. Working over the valleys can be tricky. You and I can “think” we’ve sewn our bag together exactly the same, but because of the little nuances in our gauge and style, the valleys may lay a little bit differently. What is important is to be mindful of your valley and how your purse lays as you work the rows of stitches over that area.
Take a moment now and then to put down your work and see how it’s laying as you work the border. You don’t want “holes” in the valleys and you don’t want your work to pull this way or that. There are several ways to work the decreases in the valleys. You can skip the center stitch in the valley. You can decrease 2 stitches together over the center of a valley. Or you can decrease 3 stitches together over the center of a valley.
There is no “right” or “wrong” way–just the way that you prefer and the way that keeps your work neat. You should, however, stick to the same “method” for each row. So, for instance, if you are skipping the center stitch on the center front valley, you should also skip the center stitch on the center back valley. That way both sides of your work will look the same. But feel free to change decrease style the next row if that works better for that row.
Finally, you may wish to lengthen or shorten the handles of your bag. Be mindful that if you did not buy a 2nd skein of the main color, you may not have enough yarn to make longer handles in the main color. Changing to a contrast yarn as a stripe in the border & handles is a nice variation if you find you’re running low on yarn.
Let’s wrap up this beautiful crochet sunflower bag:
Attach ivory yarn about 4-5 stitches before a side “valley”.
R1: Single crochet around. Work 2 single crochets in the top of each “peak” (the stitches that form the corner of the square). In the valleys, single crochet to the last stitch of the square the forms one side of the valley, do not work any stitch into the point where the 2 squares join. Then continue working single crochet starting with the 1st stitch of the next square. If this leaves a large “hole” in the side, then simply work a decrease and include the point where the 2 squares join as part of the decrease. At the end of the round, sl stitch to the first single crochet of the round.
In Round 2, we begin the handles.
R2: Ch 1 and single crochet in same stitch. Single crochet around. This time when you get to the peak, chain 70. Skip the next valley and join to the opposite peak, being careful not to twist the chain. Continue to single crochet across the row. When you get to the valley on the side of the bag, work a single crochet decrease. You may work the decrease over 2 or 3 stitches. Try one way and go past the valley a few stitches and see how your work lays. If you don’t like the look, go back and try the other way. Be consistent. The decreases on either side of the bag should be the same and the decrease in the front center and back center of the bag should be the same for each row.
When you get to the peak on the opposite side, chain 70. Skip the next valley and join to the opposite peak, being careful not to twist the chain. Continue to single crochet across the round. At the end of the round, join with a slip stitch to the first stitch.
Rounds 3 & 4 are worked on the outside edges of the handles and sides of the bag. Later we will come back and work some rows over the center front and back.
R3: Ch 1 and single crochet in same stitch. Single crochet around. When you get to the chain that forms the handle, single crochet across the chain to the opposite side of the bag, then continue to work a single crochet around. When you get to the valley on the side of the bag, work a single crochet decrease, just like you did in the previous round. You may work the decrease over 2 or 3 stitches. You may work the same type of decrease this round or different. Remember, the important thing is to be consistent in the round. Continue to work a single crochet around the outside of the handle and outside edge, working decreases in the opposite “valley”, until you come to the starting single crochet. Sl st to the top of the 1stst.
R4: Ch 1 and single crochet in same stitch as joining. Single crochet around. This time, skip a stitch over the valley at each side of the bag. When you come to the handle, continue working single crochet across the handle stitches (NO decreases needed here). At end of the round, join with a slip stitch to the first stitch. Fasten off yarn.
After this step you’ve worked 4 single crochet rows on the outside edge of the bag. There are 2 rows on the outside edge of each strap.
Rows 5 & 6 are worked on the inner edge of the handle and the center front and back of the bag. First you will work rows 5 & 6 on one side and then repeat the process on the opposite side.
R5: Attach ivory yarn to any single crochet on the front of the bag near a handle. Ch 1 and single crochet in same stitch as joining. Single crochet around.. When you come to the center front “valley”, skip the center stitch, and continue to single crochet around. At the end of the round, slip stitch to the 1st stitch.
R6: Ch 1 and single crochet in same stitch as joining. Single crochet around. When you come to the strap, work single crochets into opposite side of the starting chain. At the center front “valley”, sc 2 together and continue to single crochet around. At the end of the round, slip stitch to the 1st stitch. Fasten off yarn.
Repeat rows 5 and 6 on the opposite side, working over the center back and the inside edges of the strap on that side.
Fasten off and weave in the ends!
A final note: When the sunflower bag straps and border are complete, this is how the rows work out: The straps are just over an inch wide. There are 2 single crochet rows on either side of the chain, so 4 rows (total) of single crochet on each handle. The center front “valley” and back “valley” have 3 rows of single crochet. And the outside/side top edges have 4 rows of single crochet.
The Sweet Summer Sunflower bag is unlined. However, if you’d prefer a lined bag, you certainly can do so! There is a great tutorial at the bottom of the Daisy Mae Bag finishing post that might be helpful.
Please head over to the Facebook Group: Crochet 365 Knit Too Club. Post your photos. Ask questions. Show me your progress! I can’t wait to see!
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Written pattern copyright Cheryl Bennett 2019, all rights reserved. Please do not reprint or repost this pattern. If you would like to share this crochet sunflower bag pattern with others, just link to this page. If you’d like to make items for sale from this pattern, please visit my About page for more information.