I got this idea in my head to make a bag that has a chain-link strap, and I could not shake it. I searched around, but I couldn’t find a pattern that was exactly what I was envisioning, so I came up with my own. After you make one or two of these, the awkwardness lifts and you’ll be zipping right through them in no time.
I used a 5 mm hook for these, and they ended up being about 3.5 inches by 2 inches. First, chain 25. Join to the first chain with a slip stitch, being careful not to twist the chain:
Now, chain 3 (this will count as your first double crochet, now and throughout). Double crochet into each chain around and join with a slip stitch in the top of the first chain 3 (25 dc). Chain three, make a double crochet into each double crochet from the previous round, and join as before (25 dc). Do not remove your hook or finish off. You will have a flat link that resembles a paper chain-link:
Here comes the awkward part. At this point, it helps to turn the chain so the wrong side is facing out. The hook and round 2 will be pointing toward you, and the yarn tail and base chain will be pointing away from you. Insert your hook into the first base chain, on the opposite side of where you made your very first double crochet (it will be the loop right after the slip knot that you started with):
Yarn over and draw through the base chain, the double crochet, and the loop on your hook all at once (first slip stitch). Insert your hook through the next double crochet and the next free base chain (you will have four loops on your hook: the loop from the last sl st, the two loops at the top of the dc, and the loop from the bottom of the base ch). Yarn over and slip stitch through the whole works.
As you go, it helps to pinch the work width-wise so that the dc from round 2 are next to the base chains (as you can see in the above photo). After a few stitches, what was your flat paper-chain looking thing will start to look a bit like a taco, with the wrong side of the work folded inside and the right side of the work facing outwards:
Continue to slip stitch round 2 to the base chain. When you get to the beginning, make another slip stitch through the first double crochet and first base chain (for added security). Finish off and cut your yarn. This is what your link should look like now:
To finish, weave in your ends. Twist the slip stitch round to the inside of your link. Pinch it and shape it to get the look that you are satisfied with:
Adding more links is easy. Make your 25 ch base chain and insert it through the center of your first link. Then join your chain with a slip stitch and continue as you did for the first chain.
As I said, once you get the hang of making these, they are really quick and easy (and fun)! I can think of a million things to make with these chain links (or at least five). Here is the bag I came up with: