In this post, I want to show you how to really easily make yourself a crocheted net, great as produce bags for fruit and veggies. I recommend cotton thread, as it is affordable, durable and washes well. All you need to know is the chain stitch and two joining techniques, all of which I will link to videos about.
If you’ve never picked up a crocheting hook before in your life – don’t worry! This is a simple beginner project anyone with a craft-curious bone in their body can pull off.
You will need
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- Small crocheting hook suitable for thread (2-3 mm)
- Crocheting thread – the weight is not super important, but look for something around this range. It should be machine washable
Kid-friendly project? Yes. I’d say from around school age and up, depending on their development level and fine motor skills.
Starting your produce bag
Start by making a ring of chain stitches. This video (credit garnstudio.com) shows you both how to do chain stitches and how to join the circle. I recommend 15-20 chain stitches for the first ring.
Once you have a ring, make another 15 chain stitches. You want to fasten the length of chain stitches to the first ring by crocheting around the chain stitches of the first ring. Like they demonstrate in the first minute of this video (credit garnstudio.com).
Continue making lengths of 15 chain stitches and crocheting them around the stitches of the first ring, until you have a bloom of loops, like so:
Crocheting around rather than in the stitches means that your loops are movable. You can add as many loops to the first circle as you like (or can fit), and they will determine the size of your finished product.
- 10 loops for small
- 25 loops for medium
- 40 loops for large
I typically work in the medium range. If you are a crocheting beginner, I recommend starting with a small produce bag. Big nets take a while to finish and can be demotivating for a budding crafter.
Getting the size you want
Once you are satisfied with the number of loops in the first ring, you continue on to the next ring. Simply make another 15 chain stitches (I told you this was going to be easy DIY, didn’t I?) and crochet them around the first loop this time. Continue with the next, and the next, etc.
Congratulations! Those are all the techniques required to make your very own produce net. Continue on the path you’ve started in order to grow your bag to the size you want. It might look a bit weird in the beginning, and not much like a bag. But keep going and it will turn into one.
Finishing your produce bag
To finish your bag, simply enlarge the last crocheting loop and pass your thread through to create a knot. Cut the thread with enough leeway to fasten and use your needle to do so.
Make a drawstring by crocheting, you guessed it, a long string of chain stitches and loop that through the top edge of the net. You can also braid or use any other material you fancy. Perhaps spruce it up a bit?
Your bag is now ready for service!
I usually have 3-5 produce bags like this alongside my reusable shopping bag when I head out. They weigh very little and can carry surprising loads for their flimsy nature. Once back home, I throw them in with the rest of the laundry.
They also make superb gifts to any zero-waste-curious friends and family!
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