Monday, June 10, 2013


Over the years I have made purses of all kinds. Simple purses, purses with lots of pockets....purses made for no reason, purses made for specific people. The best part about making a purse is that you can make them exactly to specification. No two designs are ever alike.

Wristlets, clutches, tote bags, purse...however you call them I love making them all. Each has it's own personality and is a great way to experiment with new techniques or play with expensive fabrics on a smaller scale in a responsible way.

 I've collected here all the purses I've made that have pictures of them. I am saving messenger bags for a separate post since I am working on a new style that I'll want to include in that. So many purses, where should I start?   Chronological makes sense but I think I'll start with sparkliest.

This is a quick little zippered wristlet shaped like a lime because what else would go with a Dos Equis bottle costume? It's made from eco felt in two colors and outlined in sequin trim so it really pops. I didn't make a pattern for it, it was one of those cut as you think and sew as you go projects but I am thinking of making it up as a quick pattern soon.

This one is another simple zippered clutch shape made in wool felt and lined in purple satin. I made this in a Day of the Dead theme with a skull butterfly of my own design worked out in hematite seed beads and bugle beads.

I made this bag on a slow day at the shop when I worked alterations. I had a bunch of belts that were going to be tossed  and instead I wove them up like this. I thought they made a great textural detail for a pocket on this simple square tote. It's lined in black satin and the straps were made with wavy topstitching lines.

Yum! silk. This bag was made custom for a lady using the Alchemy feature on Etsy. I loved bidding on jobs, so sad that that feature no longer exists. Any who, we came up with this design that included her initials embroidered to match the lining, two lengths of straps, a tissue holder and a lip gloss finder. The lining was a gorgeous watermelony pink and featured a lot of  pockets to be organized.

This bag was made for a swap on Craftser about a million years ago. I called it "the bag that made itself" because it made up in an hour or so start to finish. I was so excited to make it that my brain willed it into life in a flash. This was the first moment that I realize now began to foreshadow my new life at higher speed tactical sewing. The shape of these pockets are basically the same shape, minus the flap, of the magazine insert pocket on a rifle case that I made... These zippers were sewn in the same fashion as many of the tactical pouches... Boy if I knew that my life was going to explode into the world of tactical gear when I made this bag hahaha If only they knew that my skill at sewing tactical gear came from my skill of purse sewing I am sure they too would be laughing.

This wristlet was made as a makeup case for travel. It's made of two side panels of cotton with bamboo batting quilted through. They were sewn together using a neon pink binding for finishing and an exposed zipper with blue tape. It makes a fun combination of colors and textures. I have a few more in various fabrics cut out, it's a great stash buster pattern. I am testing it out for my someday line.

These totes I made while working at the above mentioned tactical company Wilderness Tactical. During a cleaning flurry/ run in with the scrap box I flexed some of my creative muscle to show how we could make a whole product out of the scraps too small to cut a regular product out of. The strapping was a roll of strong cotton webbing that we never used so it was a real win win and true to form "overkill never fails" Wilderness mentality. It is a version of this shape that we made up originally as a quick Christmas gift idea which got added to the line. 

This last large tote is a test pattern I am working on for my someday line. It's made of a cotton with bamboo batting. The outside has a pocket between the handles but it's in matching fabric so it's hard to see from this quick picture. The straps are neckties and are just long enough to wear both cross body and over the shoulder. I am short though so maybe that's why it fits me cross body haha. I added vintage pom poms under the tie as I sewed it down just for funsies.

Each new purse that I tackle bring new and exciting challenges. I am a total hardware junkie and purses are a great way to utilize the world of hardware. Each pattern has new sewing order and techniques that keep me refreshed. The best part about sewing a purse is that it is something useable that can be enjoyed. It's a great balance between form and function.

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