I love crocheted bags and have made my fair share of totes and market bags with sturdy crocheted handles, and they are great for practical purposes. Sometimes, though, I want something a little more elegant and dressy, perhaps for evening wear or a special occasion. With today’s endless selection of yarns and threads, you can really craft a beautiful and elegant accessory but the traditional crochet handle probably won’t be what you are looking for. There is the clutch of course, but if you are looking for a purse with a handle that reflects a little more character and pizzazz, this may be the solution for you…..
Custom Beaded Handles!
These are so easy to make and require just a few simple supplies (many you probably already have) and the possibilities are endless! Imagine the perfect purse to match that one of a kind outfit.
Come with me, I’ll show you how it’s done……
1. GATHER YOUR SUPPLIES!
You’ll need to start with a few basic tools. A ruler for measuring, needle nose pliers for shaping, bending and wrapping and wire cutters for cutting the wire. You’ll also need something to shape the opening. I like round openings and for this sample I used the back end of a crochet hook, but you can use anything that you can easily remove (nothing with a lip at the end or it will get stuck).
You’ll need some wire for the handle form. I like 16 gauge because it is thick and sturdy but still easy enough to manipulate into your desired shape. You will also need the pretty stuff…..THE BEADS!!
2. TWIST IT UP!
Cut a piece of the wire the desired handle length plus about 5″. This seems like a waste but you’ll need it for wrapping and twisting and there is nothing more annoying than finding out you are a 1/4″ short when you are just about done with your handle! Starting about 2″ in, wrap the wire around your mold to form the opening shape. Twist the loose end tightly around so that it is locked into place.
3. MAKE IT NEAT!
Wrap the loose end of the wire neatly and tightly for 3 or 4 turns to make an attractive finish at the end.
4. STRING IT & TIE IT!
String your beads on the wire as you desire. This is the fun part, be creative! I like to experiment with different combinations and their order before I put the beads on the wire. I lay them out on a flat surface and work it out until I am pleased with the result, THEN I add them to the wire.
When you are done placing the beads on the wire, form the opening and wrap at the end, just like you did at the beginning. Do this tight enough that you aren’t seeing any wire in the spaces between the beads, but not so tight that the beads are crushed against each other and buckling. They need to lay flat and even.
5. STEP BACK AND ENJOY!
Finish all your trimming and tightening so that everything looks neat, trim and professional. Now step back and enjoy your handiwork! You’ve just created a beautiful, one of a kind, custom purse handle!