Friday, November 27, 2015

Fabulous Free Pattern Friday/A Simple Clutch With Major Impact

Every year, it's the same, crowds of people waiting in line, pushing others aside, all for a possible bargain. I would much rather get up, make a cup of tea, head to my studio and and make a fabulous gift. And a fabulous gift can be so easy to make!  
I have a lovely vintage bag that is not only a clutch, but a muff. A super cute idea. I had the bag with me last year for the Haute Couture Holiday Luncheon. Cennetta of The Mahogany Stylist saw my bag and was inspired! She took the idea, put her own touch on it, and made some of the most beautiful clutches. I loved the idea so much, and I thought that you would as well, so I asked Cennetta to be a guest for Fabulous Free Pattern Friday. The clutch is nothing more than 2 rectangles for the clutch and 2 rectangles for the lining. You can zip up a pile of these, one for everyone on your gift list. Just a word of caution, the recipients will probably come back asking for another! 
And now, here's Cennetta....  

I'm delighted to be a guest blogger  on Rhonda's Creative Life.  Rhonda, thank you very much for inviting me.  It is a pleasure to share my foldover clutch purse tutorial with your readers.  Earlier this year I posted a similar tutorial on my blog.  This was my first tutorial on how to make this simple hand bag.  Today's post will provide more details on the step by step process along with a few style options.

To make you will need the following supplies:

Faux Fur
Faux Leather
Pellon Fusible Felt
12" Zipper
Leather Sewing Machine Needle (90/14)

Binder Clips
Pattern Tracing Paper and Pencil
Thread and other basic sewing tools

Step 1 - Drafting the Pattern:

Body of the Purse, 2, 14 1/2" X 12 1/2" rectangles

The basic pattern is simply one pattern piece that you will use to cut the purse, lining, and fusible felt.
  • 2 lining
  • 1 Pellon Fusible Felt
  • 1 Faux Fur
  • 1 Faux Leather

Step 2 - Fuse felt to wrong side of the faux fur to add body. Be careful when fusing the felt to the faux fur so as not to melt the fur!!!  The faux leather used in the illustration already has a felt backing.

Both sides of the purse are ready to sew.


Step 3 -  This next step is to determine the finished look of the purse.  First photo illustrates the 14 inch long purse.  The second shows a 12 inch long purse with a longer fold over flap.  I chose to make the shorter purse.

Step 3a -  To add a little more interest to the finished flap.  I decided reduce the width of the lower flap by 3/4".
  • Mark the sides of one end of the purse 6" from the edge of the flap.
  • On the lower edge mark 3/4" on each side.
  • Connect the dot with a line; then cut off the access.
  • Examine the look of the newly shaped flap.  If it is not the desired width, trim until it is.  Caution - use small increments.

Step 4 -  Adjust the length of the zipper as needed.   Because I changed the width of the bag, I need a shorter zipper.  Using a 12" zipper and an extra zipper stop, I shorten the zipper to fit the top of the purse/bottom edge of the flap.

Step 5 - On the outside, place closed zipper to the either side of the bag having zipper facing down.  Make sure you leave seam allowance on both sides of the bag.  The seam allowances are about 1/4" for the entire bag.  To avoid bumpy stitching around the tab/slider, stop sewing before reaching the tab/slider.  Leave the needle in the fabric, raise the presser foot and pull the slider down below the needle.  Lower the foot and continue sewing.  Repeat for the other side of the purse.

Step 6 - Attach the lining.  With right sides together, pin lining to one edge of the bag, having the raw edges even.  Stitch 1/4" from upper edge through all layers.  Repeat for the other side of the bag making sure you do not stitching through the other side of the bag.

Step 7 -  To keep the lining away from the path of the zipper, understitch the lining to the zipper tape to hold it in place.

Step 8 - Press zipper teeth toward bag front and back lining sections.  The bag section should be facing each other as well as the lining.  Open zipper.

Step 9 - With right sides together, matching zipper tape, and having raw edges even.  Now stitch leaving a four to six inch opening in the lower edge of the lining for turning.  For the corners of the bag, stitch as illustrated below and trim corners and faux leather to reduced the thickness.

Corners and faux leather are not trimmed in the picture above.  Please do so for the best results.

Step 10 -  Turn bag to the right side. Press lining turning in raw edges of opening.  Stitch remaining opening closed.

Step 11 - Push lining into bag and close zipper. Mold into place with fingers.

That's it!  You're done.

You might ask:  Are these bags on trend?  Yes they are.  Here are a few you could easily copy with just a few modifications.

Happy Sewing!

I hope you enjoyed the tutorial, I know I'm inspired! The bags are so easy to make, they make a wonderful gift, and if you need to send a gift, the shipping will be minimal. This is a win, win situation all the way around! 
This is actually Part 1 of a 2-part tutorial, so be sure to come back next Friday and see what you can add to your bag.

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  1. I'm SO with you, sister! No malls and no crowds for me............DD and SIL have "placed an order for flannel PJ pants." So I've done a bit of cyber shopping this a.m. to find some cute prints I think they will like. Love shopping in my pj's on the couch sipping coffee! ;-) Happy day after Thanksgiving!

  2. Hi Rhonda,
    I'm also skipping the malls.
    Is there a slide show somewhere of the fashion shows from the Haute Couture Club's fashion
    shows ? You and the Mahogany Stylist have beautiful clothes. I'd love to see the other members' clothes as well.

    1. We have had videos in the past, but not this past year. I will talk to the fashion show committee and see if it might be possible this year. Great idea!
      Thanks for the lovely compliment :)

  3. Thank you do much for featuring on your blog.

  4. I skip the malls by mid-November. Actually, since I live out in the woods, I do most if not all my shopping online. Thanks for the lesson on the bag/muff.

  5. Cute little bag! Thanks Rhonda and Cennetta.

    1. They really are so cute. I can't wait to make a pile!

  6. the clutch is teriffic! Is there a typo in the measurements for the rectangles? I have a feeling that they're supposed to be 14 1/2 inch by 12 1/2 inch rectangles... yes? Thanks for sharing the pattern.

    1. Thank you!!! You are right. Even I missed it when I read through the instructions.

  7. Thanks Rhonda and Cennetta. That is a lovely clutch bag. I love the leopard skin. I have avoided the Black Friday sales here too. Although this is a recent import into the UK there were actual physical fights in the stores here last year. Not for me. How much lovelier to give someone something that you have made. Xx

    1. Isn't it amazing that we are supposed to entering a season of peace and love, and then people are beating each other up for a chance at a bargain. I look at the news and always wonder, how many televisions does one need?!!!

  8. This is a good idea and a great tutorial! Thank you both for offering up this wonderful project to us all! Cennetta, this is a lovely, lovely clutch which gives me many idea options! Thank you again for sharing!

  9. Oh I so don't enjoy Christmas shopping at the malls but I've promised my husband I wouldn't sew presents till the last minute so this beautiful clutch would be a great gift for somebody on my list and wouldn't take a ton of time. . Thank you Rhonda and Cennetta!

  10. Malls? No way! I will, however, do some "Shop Local and Shop Small" today and look forward to the uniqueness of local retailers.

    This is a wonderful gift and I am pretty sure I will give it a shot. Love the diagonal zip version as well as your wonderful "faux fur" version. Thanks, Cenetta and Rhonda.

  11. It looks like you're using two zippers but you only call for one in the supplies. Are you actually using two? I love the look! Thanks!

    1. No, there's only 1 zipper, just 2 zipper pulls.

  12. Great tutorial and they will make awesome gifts. Thanks for sharing. Geez, I can't remember the last time I stepped foot in a mall. I can't handle the craziness of it.

  13. Thanks Rhonda and Cennetta. This looks great! I'll be making myself a clutch as soon as I'm finished with Christmas sewing. One quilt down; a pair of pajamas, and a few other things to go.

  14. Guess I read the second tutorial first. Both bags are just what I've been wanting to make. Thank-you!!