Showing posts with label Summer Purse. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Summer Purse. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Summer Purse, Part 6, Finally Finished

Attach the lining and call it done.

Which bag are you making?

Note: All seam allowances are 1/2" unless otherwise instructed. 

There are two more pieces of lining to cut.

1. Cut two strips of lining, 3" x 16' each.

 2 Locate the center of the 16" sides and mark with a pin or a notch. Also mark the centers of the encased zipper units.

 3. Sew the 3" x 16" strips to the encased zipper. Make sure the right sides of the strips are facing the right side of the zipper (the side with the zipper pull on top).

4. Cut a 1 1/2" square from each bottom corner of the pocket sections of lining. These cuts will be used to make the boxed corners on the bottom sides of the bag.

5. Sandwich the encased zipper between the 3" x 16" strips and the larger, pocketed sections of the lining. The large sections of lining will face the wrong side of the zipper. Sew right on the stitching line that attaches the 3" x 16" strip to the zipper casing.
The zipper is sandwiched between a narrow strip of lining and a pocket section on both sides. 

 Note: Place the zipper pocket on whichever side will allow it and the encased zipper to open in the same direction. My zippers open from left to right.

6. Tuck the zipper ends out of the way and sew the two side seams of the linings right sides together.

View from the top of the bag.

 Note: Open the zipper to finish sewing the bag.

 7. Tuck the body of the purse and the handles inside the lining. Right sides should be together.

8. Place the side seams of the lining in the exact center of the 3" wide sides on the outside of the bag. Pin the lining to the bag all the way around. 

9. Sew the bag and the lining together at the top.

 10. Turn the lining to the inside of the bag. Do not fold the batting down.  Fold the lining over the batting and to the inside of the bag.  The 1/2" strip of lining that remains on the top looks like binding and matches the trim on the main front pocket.

11. Pin the lining in place. Stitch in the ditch right along the seam. Press.

Note: Double check to make sure the bag zipper is open. 

12. Turn the bag inside out. Pull the lining away from inside the bag to finish sewing the bottom.

13. Stitch either side of the bottom edges of the lining together for 1 1/2" - 2" from the side edge inward. This will leave an 8" or 9" opening at the bottom of the lining.  Backstitch so the the short seams don't rip out when you pull the bag through the opening later. 

14. Pinch the square opening at the corners together. Align the side seam with the bottom seam. Pin together.

15. Stitch across. This will create the box corner at the bottom of the lining.

16. Remember that 11" x 2 1/2" piece of plastic canvas you cut and put away back in Part 2 of this tutorial? You need it now. Slide the plastic canvas under the insert at the bottom of the bag and center it. I hope you don't have to cut another piece like I did. I put the one I made earlier away in a place that was evidently too safe.

17. Pull the bag through the opening you left in the lining. Stitch the opening closed, and push the lining to the inside. 

18. Give the whole bag a good pressing and it is done!!

Optional last step.

If you want your bag to remain clean over time and with lots of use, I recommend taking it outside and spraying it with Scotch Guard. Spray it lightly, allow to dry, and spray one more time.

One final note. 
 I would truly appreciate hearing from you about the usefulness and quality of this tutorial. As I said in the beginning, I've made many bags, but this is my first attempt at writing a pattern for one. I welcome any suggestions you might have. If I ever get it figured out, I may design more bag patterns. 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Summer Purse: Part 5, Lining with Pockets

I had planned to finish the summer purse tutorial with this post, but it was simply getting to be too long. There will have to be a sixth and final post. This post covers making the lining with the pockets that are found inside the purse. The last post will cover assembly and finishing the bag.

Pockets galore!

I want lots of pockets inside my bags, and I used my favorite combination in this purse. One side of the lining has four open pockets lined up in a row. They keep my odds and ends of little things neat and easy to grab. The other side of the lining contains a generous zippered pocket which is partially unzipped in the photo. This pocket is for my wallet, receipts, and any other items that I want to keep secure. I keep a notebook in the center of the bag, and I can toss my keys in there as well. There is still plenty of space to add a book, a snack bag, or whatever small something I may want to carry on a given day. Since the pockets have done away with clutter, I don't have to go digging and searching for the things I want.

Getting ready to cut.

I definitely recommend that a lightweight fusible interfacing be ironed onto the wrong side of each piece of fabric in the lining. The interfacing should be just a hair small than the lining fabric to protect your iron. The fusible substance can be nasty if it's melted to the iron, itself.

The little bit of extra thickness and firmness added by the interfacing assures that linings hold together over the long run. Pockets don't rip out so easily, and the linings will look and feel more substantial. This step is optional, of course, but interfacing is cheap, the extra work is minimal, and it makes a world of difference.

Note: All seams allowances are 1/2" unless instructed otherwise. 

The open pocket section

Cut one of each of these pieces from the lining fabric.

A. Make the open pocket unit

When finished, the pockets in the unit will be the sizes shown in the diagram below. Pleats between the pockets give them depth.

Note: I gave this piece of fabric a good spray of heavy starch before beginning. It helps with pressing the pocket pleats for sewing. 

1. Fuse a 4 1/2" x 15" piece of interfacing to one end of the wrong side of the 15 1/2" x 9" lining fabric.

2. Fold the lining with right sides together.

3. Using a 1/4" seam allowance, sew around the three open sides. Leave a space of about 2" open on the long side.

4. Trim the corners and pull through the open part of the seam to turn right side out. Press.
Stitch the opening closed by hand. The long edge with the seam will be the bottom of the pocket.

The piece now measures 4" x 15".

5. Measure and mark the pleats using the diagram below. The spaces for pleating between pockets are each 1 1/4". The edges of the pockets are folded to the center of the pleated areas as shown by the red arrows. Dotted lines show the inside center of each pleat.

I marked the pocket edges with pins and pressed a line from top to bottom along each edge.

I pulled the pocket edges together and pinned them to the center of the 1 1/4" space between pockets to form the pleats.

After a good pressing with steam, the pocket pleats hold their shape nicely.

B. Sew the pocket unit to the lining section.

1. Lay the 11" x 16" piece of lining with a long edge at the top. Center the pocket unit 2" down from the top of this piece. Pull the pocket edges snugly against each other and pin in place.
Place the pins back a bit from the edges of the creases. 

2. Sew the inside centers of the pleats to the lining.

Fit a narrow foot to your sewing machine. I used my quarter inch foot.

You will be sewing in the center of the spaces between pockets. The seam will be at the bottom of the ditch between pleats. Start at the bottom of the pocket and stitch up to the top. Pivot at the top, sew one stitch over to the side, pivot again and sew back to the bottom. Do this for all three of the pleats.

3. Topstitch close to the edge all around the sides and bottom edges of the pocket.
Begin 1/4" in from the side edge and 3/4" down from the top of the pocket unit.  Stitch a "u" at the beginning and end of the stitching.  The diagram shows it much better than the photographs do. The "u" shaped stitching on pockets protects them from ripping out easily.

The finished lining section will be 16" wide and 11" tall.

The Zippered Pocket Section

Cut these pieces from the lining fabric. 

A. Make the zippered pocket.

Put the two 4" x 11" pieces aside for now, and get out your 9" zipper. If your zipper is too long, you can trim it off after the pocket is finished. I already had the perfect color in an 18" zipper, so I used it.
1. The zipper will be sewn onto the 10" edge of the lining fabric. Start with the zipper pull side facing down against the right side of the 10" x 9" lining. 

(I like my zipper to open from the left, so I make sure that the zipper pull is on the left side of the top of the fabric.)

 Line the zipper up at the edge of the fabric and sew with a zipper foot.

2. Flip the zipper over so the zipper pull faces up. Pull the larger section of the lining out of the way to the left. With right sides together, sew the 3" x 10" strip of fabric to the other side of the zipper.

3. Lay the piece you've just sewn on top of the pocket fabric. The wrong side of the section with the zipper will face the right side of the pocket. Sew along right on the stitch line from step 3 to sandwich the zipper between the pocket and the lining.

 5.  Take the opposite side of the pocket fabric and fold it up and over the zipper.

Align the edge of the fabric up against the edge of the zipper and sew it in place.

The zipper is sandwiched between the the pocket and the lining on both sides. 

Wrong side of pocket unit.

Right side of pocket unit.
6. Press the pocket down toward the larger piece of lining.This zipper unit should measure 10" wide and 11" long. If needed, trim the bottom of the lining fabric to get the right measurement.

7. Before finishing this piece of lining, unzip the zipper part way.

8. Sew a 4" x 11" piece of lining fabric to either side of the pocket unit. If your zipper was longer than 9", trim the ends off.

The zipper opened to show the pocket.

The finished lining section should be 16" wide and 11" tall as shown below. Trim if necessary.

 The last post for the summer purse will be out in a few days. I promise not to keep you waiting too long this time.

The Finish.
Coming Soon!

Happy Stitching!!


Friday, April 8, 2016

Summer Purse: Part 4, Zipper Choices and Preparing an Encased Zipper

The recessed zipper won't be sewn in place until the lining is complete. I like to prepare it in advance, though, because encasing the zipper is just about the right amount of work for one sewing session.

From your main fabric, cut the following:
 You will also need: 
  • one 12" x 13" piece of light to medium fusible interfacing
  • one 18" nylon zipper 

    What type of zipper should you choose for your bag? 

    I've discussed four types of nylon zippers in this post. Metal zippers have many wonderful uses and can be very decorative, but they are not my usual choice for purses and bags.

    Each of these four zippers is just right for some bags, but not the best choice for others. I'll go through them one by one starting at the top of the photo.

    1. A standard dressmaking zipper 

    These zippers are tremendously versatile and they are found in any shop that carries sewing goods. They have so many advantages. They are not very expensive, they come in every color under the sun, they can be easily cut and shortened, and you can stitch right over the top of the zipper teeth.

    A standard zipper can be used on any bag, but it isn't as sturdy or durable as the others shown. If your bag is fairly small, and the zipper isn't strained by overuse or overstuffing, the standard zipper is just fine. I use these zippers on small pouches and clutches, and for internal pockets on bags.

    2. A specialized zipper for purses

    I've shown two purse zippers in the photograph. The major difference between them is the type and number of zipper pulls. The YKK zipper has a single large zipper pull. I bought a number of these in bulk on eBay for a very reasonable price. The Coats purse zipper with two smaller zipper pulls is available in most fabric stores. Color choices for purse zippers are limited.

    Both of these zippers are very durable and will hold up through heavy use. Both zippers can be cut and shortened easily even though the teeth are larger than on a standard zipper. You can sew right over the teeth of the YKK zipper teeth just like you can on a standard zipper.  You will need to go more slowly over the Coats zipper, and your machine might skip a stitch of two over the zipper teeth. . Sometimes I'll sew right up to teeth on one side of the zipper, backstitch and cut my thread, then sew up to the zipper on the other side.

    The double pull zipper is especially nice for larger bags. You can open and close it from either end or from the middle.  It's an excellent choice when a zipper needs to go around squared or curved corners, as it might on a travel bag or a laptop case.

    3. A sports zipper

    This is the strongest of the nylon zippers, and not really needed for an everyday bag. It's wonderful for a really heavy duty bag, though. It would be the best choice for a duffle bag or a backpack. Cutting and shortening this type of zipper is not recommended. It's best to try to find the exact length of zipper you will need.

    Construction of the Encased Zipper

    Note: Although it isn't really essential, I always back my lining and zipper casing fabrics with interfacing. It adds an element of stability and strength to those pieces that I really like. Pockets are firmer and less likely to rip out, and everything seems to lie more smoothly. 

    Make the Zipper Casing

    1. Cut the interfacing into four pieces, 3" x 13" each. Iron one piece onto the wrong side of each of the casing strips. Fold the ends of the strips 1/2" under on either side and press.

    2.  Center the zipper on one section of casing. Lay the zipper on the right side of the casing strip. Align it along the edge of the fabric with the pull side facing down. Use a zipper foot to stitch close to the teeth of the zipper, but not so close that the stitching will interfere with opening and closing the zipper.  

    3. Lay the zipper, pull side down, on the right side of a second piece of casing strip exactly as you did in step 2. Take care that the folded edges of the two casing strips are exactly aligned and that the strip you attached first has been folded back out of the way. Sew close to the zipper teeth as before.

     The two casing strips will fan out to either side of the zipper. Top and bottom ends of the casing should line up perfectly with each other.

    4. Place the third zipper casing strip on one of the back sides of the zipper. The right side of the fabric will be against the back of the zipper this time. This piece will sandwich the zipper between two casing strips. Line the folded ends up with the first casing strip. Pin the two ends in place.

     5. Sew directly on the stitching line that was made when the first strip attached.

    A zipper sandwich

    6. Fold all three casing strips back out of the way. Sew the remaining strip to the opposite side of the zipper just as you did in step 5. Open the casings on both sides of the zipper and press smooth. 

     7. Line up the folds on the paired ends of the casings and top stitch together.

    8. Trim each side of the casing 2" from the seam next to the zipper.

    9. Sew the long sides of each pair of casing strips together close to the trimmed edges.

    Zipper End Pieces
    Make 2

    Note: I used heavy starch on these 3" x 4" end pieces. The creases need to be sharp and to hold their shape through several folds. This works so much better with the starch than it does without.

    1.  Fold each edge of the long (4") side in 1/2" and press .

    Note: The next step helps to determine the exact width the zipper end cover needs to be.

    2. Lay your zipper over the fabric with the folds on either end. Now, fold the raw edges over the zipper to encase it. Press

    3. Remove the zipper and press the folded fabric again so it will hold its shape.

    4. Now fold the cover in half. From the opening to the fold at the end the piece will be just over 1" long. Press.

    5. First add the end cover to the end of the zipper that does not have a zipper pull. Close the zipper. If you need to shorten it, measure about 3 1/2" from the end of the casing strips and cut the zipper off.

    6. Tuck the end into the top opening of the end piece. Slide it as far in as you can. 

    7. Fold the section firmly together. Pin to hold it in place. .

    8. Sew close to the edges around the two sides and on the top. Sew right across the zipper.

    Next you will add a cover to the end of the zipper that does have a zipper pull. 

    Note: If you need to shorten the zipper, be careful not to cut the zipper pull off! Been there and done that. Oh my goodnes what a mess! I completely destroyed my zipper and had to take it out and start from scratch. 

    9. To shorten the zipper: Open the zipper part way. Now cut about 3 1/2" from the casing as before.

    Do not close the zipper until it has been sewn in place. 

    10. If the zipper has been shortened, tuck the two open ends of the zipper into the end cover. If the zipper has not been shortened open the zipper a few inches so you can tuck the end into the cover. Pin in place and sew as you did with the other end of the zipper. Close the zipper.

    That's it! The zipper is ready install in the bag with the lining. 

    In the next session, I'll explain how to make the lining. 

    I hope you like pockets!

    I hope you like installing zippers, too, because
    there will be one more zipper - this one on the inside of the bag.