This is a very easy to make but effective handle for a large tote bag.
You can make it in either one of two ways, either you make a small portion of the braid to fall over the shoulder when the bag is used, and attach the ends to two large purse rings and then add crocheted straps to go from the end of the rings rings on the sides of the bag, or you make it long enough to reach your desired length and just attach it to the purse rings on both sides of the bag, either way works beautifully. Another thing you could do with this is to curve it and to sew the edges of the whole braiding to each other like a tube, to make a very strong handle, comparable to a purchased thick handle. then you would attach it to purse rings, this time, you would use it for a handbag.
Use 4 colors that match your bag, or that contrast it beautifully, if the bag is gray, white, brown or black.
For this particular example, I used Red Heart yarn in Paddy Green, Delft Blue, Blue and Spring green. You will have to test (just like when you do swatching) to figure out the length of rope or crocheted I-cord that you will need for your particular bag.
Worsted weight yarn of chosen colors (4 different ones)
Crochet hook size H
Pinning surface (could be a pillow, a macrame board, an old cushion, etc.)
To make Melissa, choose your colors and crochet your ropes.
If you don't know how to crochet I-cord, please refer to this tutorial: How to Make Crochet I-Cord Ropes
Once you have made your ropes or I-cords, proceed as possible:
Pin one end of your ropes to the pinning surface of your choice.
In your mind, number your I-cords or ropes 1, 2, 3 and 4 from right to left.
1- Now, working from right to left, bring cord #1 and place it in front of cord #2, loop it around cord #2 towards the back and bring it forward through the small loop that is formed on the side. (Half Hitch formed.)
2- Take cord #2 and loop it around cord #3, around it towards the back and then bring to the front through the small loop that naturally forms on the side. (Half Hitch formed.)
3- Take cord #3 and make a Half Hitch over cord #4.
4- Working from left to right, form a take cord #4 and form a half hitch with it over cord #3.
5- Take cord #3 and make a half hitch with it over cord #2.
6- Take cord #2 and make a half hitch with it over cord #1.
Now start a new series of half hitches moving from right to left. Once you are done with it.
Repeat the half hitches moving from left to right. That is all there is to it!
Continue until you have the length you want for your strap or for your handle.