The Carry Me Away Tote is a free crochet pattern for a large tote bag. And Oh, this bag! This may be my favorite pattern so far! This pattern actually took shape in my mind while working on another pattern, the Knitty Pretty Reversible Cowl. I love the faux knit stitch and thought this stitch would make an excellent bag. It doesn’t have the stretch that some stitches do and sometimes bags made of yarn just don’t hold their shape well when filled. This bag, however, holds its shape, doesn’t sag and holds a ton!
I have also been wanting to design a pattern utilizing the best features of the Yarn Bee Sugarwheel yarn.* I think this yarn has been underrated by most and overlooked a bit because of the Caron Cake craze. Don’t get me wrong — I love Caron Cakes! I have made many projects with Caron Cakes and have a lot of praise for it. However, I would say there are some projects that Caron Cakes are just not as well-suited to and I think tote bags are one of those. In my opinion, the yarn we use for a project can make or break it. A pattern can be great but make it with an unsuitable yarn and a frogging we will go!
*This post contains affiliate links. You can click on any yarn or material highlighted to purchase. I will receive a small commission if you purchase but it won’t cost you any extra!
When I make a bag, I usually want some heft to the yarn and yarn that will hold its shape. I don’t need it to be terribly soft but I need it to look good. The Yarn Bee Sugarwheel yarn certainly fits the bill here. Check back soon as I will be doing a full review of the Sugarwheel yarn very soon. I recently started my review series with the Lion Brand Mandala yarn and plan on several more here at Nana’s Crafty Home.
This bag is beautiful and has a definite wow factor. The pattern is really easy with basic stitches. If you know how to chain, single crochet and half double crochet you are all set to go. If you are unsure about the faux knit stitch I have included a video below for you. I also have a little trick to help close the gap while working in the round to make your work seamless and hide the hole. The instructions are included in the pattern but you can also watch the video below if you have any questions.
I have also included instructions for an optional button flap. If you make the flap you will have only a small amount of yarn left. You can add buttons at the bottom of each strap as I have on my Whipped Mocha version or just have the button for the flap as you can see on the Green Tea Swirl version I made.
I did some color controlling on each of these bags and you can do as little or as much of that as you want. The straps will take all of one color stripe with nothing left over for the edging. If you want your edging to be the same color as the strap you would need to make the straps shorter or cut extra of that same color from the other cake. If you are going to color control make decisions about which color you want the straps and flap to be before you begin so you can manage that while working with your second cake.
You could certainly line this bag if desired. However, if you are going to be using this bag as a WIP bag for your crochet projects it would be completely unnecessary as there are no holes in the bag and would be completely fine without lining.
This tote is fun and quick to make and sure to get a lot of compliments! If you would like tips for selecting multiple cakes for projects check out my Facebook live video in which I will be discussing this pattern.
This pattern is also available as an ad-free, printable PDF! You can purchase the individual pattern, or if you love PDFs, you might want to check out my Lifetime Membership. It’s an awesome deal! Never pay for one of my PDFs again!! (Or, scroll down for the free version!)
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Pattern written in US crochet terminology
Approximate finished size: 17” wide x 15” tall (without straps) straps add approx 14”)
Size I (5.5 mm) crochet hook
Buttons as desired. I used large 2” buttons for my project.
Recommended Amazon picks for this project:
RS right side
WS wrong side
sc single crochet
hdc half double crochet
dc double crochet
sl st slip stitch
blo back loop only
hdc2tog hdc decrease or hdc two together
sc2tog sc decrease or sc two together
Round 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and each ch across to last ch, 3 sc in last ch. DO NOT TURN! Working in unused loop of original ch work sc in each unused loop to end working 3 sc in last loop. Join with sl st to top of 1st sc. (103)
Round 2 ch 1, sc in same st (place st marker in this st and move this up to 1st st of each round) and sc in next 49 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 51 st, 3 sc in next st, join with sl st to 1st sc (st with st marker). (107)
Round 3 ch 1, sc in same st (place st marker) and in next 50 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 53 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next st, join with sl st to top of 1st sc. (111)
Round 4 ch 1, sc in same st (place st marker) sc in next 51 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 55 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 2 st, sl st top of of 1st st. (115)
Round 5 ch 1, sc in same st (place st marker) sc in next 52 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 57 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 3 st, sl st top of 1st st. (119)
Round 6 ch 1, sc in same st (place st marker) sc in next 53 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 59 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 4 st, sl st top of 1st st. (123)
Round 7 ch 1, sc in same st (place st marker) sc in next 54 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 61 st, 3 sc in next st, sc in next 5 st, sl st top of 1st st. (127)
Round 8 ch 1, hdc in same st, hdc in blo in each st around. Do not sl st to 1st st. See below:
- special instructions: instead of joining with sl st to 1st st and creating a “hole” at the point of the join in your work, hdc2tog. This will be worked in the sl st from previous round (which is not a st you would normally work) and back loop of 1st st from previous round. (yo, insert hook into sl st loop, pull up a loop, insert hook into hidden third loop behind 1st st –there will be four loops on your hook, yo and pull through all four loops. This then effectively “closes” the gap or hole you would have with a traditional sl st join without adding any additional st count. See video provided below for visual instructions.
Rounds 9 – 51 Continue with hdc in hidden third loop (faux knit stitch) without joining at the beginning of each round in order to make your work seamless. See video provided below for visual instructions of the faux knit stitch.
Once you have completed the desired number of rounds, place stitch markers at each end of the bag with 62/63 st in between.
Straps: (Make 2)
Row 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and each ch across. Turn (7)
Row 2 ch 1 sc in each st across. Turn (7)
Row 3 – 91 repeat row 2
Sc evenly around both straps.
Being careful not to twist straps attach 9 stitches from stitch marker and diagonally across the bag in same position from stitch marker.
Attach buttons as desired.
Button Flap (optional)
Row 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and each ch across. Turn (10)
Row 2 sc in each ch across. Turn (10
Row 3 – 10 repeat row 2
Row 11 Ch 1, sc2tog, sc in next 6 st, sc2tog Turn (8)
Row 12 Ch 1, sc2tog, sc in next 4 st, sc2tog Turn (6)
Row 13 Ch 1, sc in each st across. Turn (6)
Row 14 – 29 repeat row 13.
Row 30 Ch 1, sc in next 2 st, ch 2, sk next 2 st, sc in last 2 st. Turn (4) Button hole row
Row 31 Ch 1, sc in next 2 st, 2 sc in ch 2 sp, sc in last 2 st. Turn (6)
Row 32 Ch 1, sc2tog, sc in next 2 st, sc2tog. Turn (4)
Row 33 Ch 1, sc2tog in first 2 st, sc2tog last 2 st. Turn (2)
Row 34 Ch 1, sc2tog Turn 1
Do not fasten off.
Sc evenly around flap.
Attach flap as desired evenly spaced between straps.
Attach button as desired to match with button hole on flap.