Grammy's got a new purse

Materials
Accent Fabric. I used 1/4 yard of a fun colorful fabric (blue)
Main Fabric. I had scrap of some upholstery fabric (enough for 2 19x13 rectangles and straps)
Lining Fabric. I had a cotton black and white print that worked nice. (same amount as purse)
Fabric you can run through your printer (optional)
Embroidery thread, buttons, trims etc. (optional)

So way back like 4 years ago I came across a fun book that was perfect for me and how I sew.  I'm not a pattern follower (I can do it, I just don't like it).  I like to see fabric and then make it into something lovely.   Anyway it's called Bend the Rules Sewing.  In it there was a cute purse and I was so excited that I decided to take a picture my youngest did of a bird and bring it to life on a purse.   This pattern is adapted from that pattern. Anyway it became a favorite.  I've gotten lot's of compliments and Grammy requested one so, here it is.  I actually made the first one for her but was unsure if I should give it or not, then when I was done I loved it so much I kept it for myself.    Ok enough talk.  So the day before christmas - YEP - sometimes I don't think through my ideas, I made this for Grammy, and I loved it so much I didn't want to give it up again!

STEP 1: scan, copy and trace whatever works for you, like a picture, onto some fabric.  I have a roll of Printer Fabric.  You cut the size run it through the printer and there you go.
STEP 2:  Cut out all your pieces.

  • Main purse fabric (brown) 19 x 13 cut 2
  • Main purse fabric straps 27 x 3 cut 2 (or the length you want)
  • Purse Lining (white & black) 19 x 13 cut 2
  • Accent fabric (blue/green) Straps 27x 3 cut 2
  • Accent fabric pocket 4x6 cut 2 (of what ever size you want)
  • Accent fabric on purse 3 x 13 cut 4


Since it was the day before christmas I didn't get to snap a picture of each step.   

STEP 3: Prepping the straps.   Sew with right side together (main fabric & accent), then turn right sides our and press. Set aside for later.

STEP 4: Sew on accent stripes. Take the 4 accent strips and press 1/2 on the length of each side.    Align them on the main fabric about 3 in out from the edge and stitch down.  You can use a zig zag, straight stitch of even add some trim as you stitch it down.

STEP 5: I peeled the paper off the back of my printer fabric and then placed it in my hoop.  Then I got busy with some embroidery stitches.  I love this part.  Be as fun and and creative as you want.  I ran out of my fusing and being that it was the day before christmas, I was not about to run out to Joann's.  Instead I used fabric glue.  I glued my image on the bag let it dry and then added some free form stitches over the images and along the side of the straps.  Have fun.  Draw with thread.

STEP 6: Now, sew down the side and bottom of you main purse fabric.  

STEP 7: Pleats.  Now at the top where the accent fabric is sew a pleat in covering the accent fabric and sewing down about 2 in.

STEP 8: Make sure you sew the same pleat, same spot in from the side seam and same length down in the lining.    While you are at it sew down one side seam, the bottom and about 2in up the other side seam.  Then come down on that same side about 4 in.  Leaving a side opening.  You'll need that to pull the bag right side out.

STEP 9: Pocket.  Sew around all 4 edges of the pocket with right side together. You want to make sure you leave an 1 or more opening on one side to turn it right side out.  I also added some piping to the top of my pocket.  Turn right side out and press.  I would stitch this on to the lining in your bag now.  You can do a stitch up the middle or so, of the pocket to hold your phone.  I also added on the other side of the lining a small zippered pocket.  (I'm not including that in the instructions today) 

STEP 10: The bottom of the bag.  So now I turn the bag wrong side out.  Put the corners of the bag out and then sew the little triangle. (see picture)  Do that with both the bag and the lining.  Making sure you do them all the same size.
STEP 11: I like to add a sturdy bottom.  So I have the really thick interfacing.  Measure the bottom of your bag how it would lay flat and then cut your interfacing to fit.  I cut a piece of my lining fabric a 1/2 bigger all the way around then I iron the edges over.  Once that is done I stitch it down in the bag.  Making sure it stays in place.  ( I even used pins. My sewing teacher would be so proud)

STEP 12: Let's put it all together.  First stitch the straps in place just over the pleats.  So with the main purse fabric right side out, fold straps down and then slip the lining over that with the wrong side out.  Stitch around the top.  Turn right sides out through the opening in the lining side.  Stitch opening closed. I pressed the top down then I added a top stitch all the way around the bag.  And thats it! Your done and can take a picture and post it here.  I would love to see them.

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