My Handbag is Finally Done!

I can’t believe how long it took me to finish this bag!  It sat for a week, buuuuut that was after a frustrating day of dealing with zippers that for some reason didn’t want to work with me.  I’ve sewn them many, many times, in many, many different ways, but alas, they didn’t like me and I didn’t like them.

What inspired me to make my bag was looking at all of the Better Life Bags (their mission is awesome!).  I hope to get one for the holidays, just to support them, well that and the bags are gorgeous!  I wish they sold their bag patterns…

Anyway, I used See Kate Sew‘s leather bottom tote tutorial because it reminded me of the Better Life Bags.  I really like the look of black and white fabric with the brown leather.

Thrifted TopI wanted to use up my faux suede I had leftover from my baby shoes, and an Italian linen top I had thrifted.  I was saving the top for a dress skirt for the girls, but I thought it would be fun as a bag too.

I used fusible fleece to sturdy up the zebra fabric since that’s what I had on hand.  I’m holding on to my Soft n’ Stable for another bag that I have in my sewing queue and can’t wait to make!  Slouchy BagI probably should’ve doubled the fusible fleece because the bag is a little slouchy, but it still holds its shape fairly well.

IMG_2766Now here’s where the hiccups occurred.  I decided to add a zipper to the outside.  When I was sewing the zipper to the liner, there were all types of mysterious complications, then out of impatience I measured incorrectly and didn’t realize it until I had cut the slit in my outside fabric.  I didn’t have anymore fabric available to cut a new piece, so I was stuck with this gaping zipper opening.  Zipper with Faux SuedeI decided to use some faux suede to help enclose the zipper on the sides.  I used the same technique as for the top zipper.  Then I had to hand sew the zipper in.  Looking back, I should’ve added the faux suede to fill in the entire opening, and created the zipper opening from that, but like I said, I wasn’t thinking clearly.

Top ZipperThe top zipper was also giving me a hard time.  I somehow completely forgot how to use my zipper foot (I’m blaming this on mommy brain), and sewed the fabric so close to the zipper I couldn’t unzip it!  After lots of seam ripping, I finally got it in there.  Phew!!!  Zippers all done.Top StitchingI used top stitching thread to match the zipper too.Cape Lining

For the lining I used some leftover fabric from my daughter’s cape lining.  I like the pop in color.  The fabric is really soft too.

Then I was able to finish sewing everything up in the flashiest of flashes.  It’s finally done!  I’m a little disappointed in the front zipper, but oh well.Bag FrontThe rest of the bag is cute!

In the meantime, I found a couple of other bags I’m sewing up as holiday gifts!  Hint:  Checkout the free patterns on the Robert Kaufman website!  Hopefully I’ve learned from my earlier mistakes and will take it slowly.  No room for impatience in sewing!

Have you ever lost your patience sewing?  Am I the only one?  It sure makes everything much more difficult and time consuming!!!

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2 Replies to “My Handbag is Finally Done!”

  1. Ha! My favorite times are the ones where I put the project away for months because I’m so irritated. And then when I do get back to it, it only takes a few minutes to finish. Gotta be in the right frame of mind, I guess…


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