Monday, July 28, 2008

How to Make Floral Purses--Did You Know You Needed One?

How to Make Floral PursesIf I ever leave off talking about purses here you'll know that's the day that I've gone and died. I guess making purses appeals to me because they can simultaneously be a piece of art, style and functionality. This particular purse is probably more art than most but I just love it. I carry it when I wear my hot-pink, full-length paisley print dress that has a touch of Asian design and it makes quite a statement.

There's really very little trick to making your own, you basically make a regular purse and then hot glue till the cows come home--oh I could write a treatise on the wonders of hot glue--the biggest thing is that you'll want to make sure you purchase flowers that are of a good quality because that will make all the difference in the finished product.

You'll need:

  • four stems of white orchids (or other comparable flower) and save the leaves
  • one thick green stem suitable for a handle
  • 1/2 yard of white material for the purse body
  • 1/4 yard of heavyweight fusible interfacing
  • one magnetic clasp
  • one wire cutter
  • drill
  • white upholstery thread and white all-purpose thread
  • hot glue--plenty of it
How to Make Floral Purses1. First make up the purse by cutting four trapezoid-shaped pieces measuring 12 1/2 inches wide at the bottom and 9 inches wide at the top then 12 inches tall like you see pictured at left. Cut two pieces of heavyweight fusible interfacing the same size then iron/fuse them each to the wrong sides of two of the pieces of white fabric. These two stiff pieces will be the main body of the purse, the two non-fused pieces are the lining.

How to Make Floral Purses2. Take the two pieces of the main body and with wrong sides together sew the sides and bottom using 1/4 inch seam allowance. Then with the purse still wrong side out, flatten the corner seams and sew across the ends a distance of 1 1/2 inches from the tip. Trim the seam like you see pictured at right.

3. Repeat step two using the two pieces of lining and use exactly the same procedure only leave a four-inch gap in the stitching on the bottom edge so you can turn the bag right side out in step 6. Once done you should have a stiff purse and an unfused inner piece for the lining.

How to Make Floral Purses4. Separate the magnetic clasp and position one half where you'd like it to be toward the top of the lining (be sure to leave enough room from the top wider than the pressure foot on your machine so that the foot can make it through comfortably without catching on the clasp itself). Make two small slits in one side of the lining where you'd like the magnetic clasp to be and fit the prongs of the clasp through from the outside of the lining to the inside. Once the prongs are through fit the metal plate that comes with the clasp over the top of the fabric and the prongs then bend the prongs back to hold the whole contraption in place. Repeat with the other half of the clasp on the other side of the lining.

5. Turn the main body purse section right side out and fit it down inside the lining piece that is wrong side out. Pin the top edges together, matching up side seams, and stitch all around the top edge (this is where you hope you didn't get that metal clasp too close to the top edge or it will catch on your pressure foot).

How to Make Floral Purses6. Reach through the gap left in the bottom seam of the lining to pull the whole thing right side out. Smooth out the seams, stitch up that gap in the bottom, press it well and do a top stitch around the upper edge if you wish. It should look something like you see at the right.

7. Take the large stem you've saved and drill a hole through each end. This may require working around the wire that's inside but if you're careful you can make it through cleanly.

8. With a needle and the upholstery thread stitch the handle to each side of the inside of the purse by putting the needle and thread through the hole you've just drilled. The wire in the handle will keep the whole thing nice and taut.

How to Make Floral Purses9. Trim all the flowers off of the stem and trim the leaves too. Cut them as close to the base as you can without cutting off the parts that hold the flowers together. Heat up your glue gun and plan how you'd like to arrange the flowers on the purse, I'd suggest starting with the background leaves first followed by the biggest flowers then the smaller flowers and then any buds you'd like to include.

10. Glue the flowers in place, making sure to pull off any glue strings that might be trailing.

You've now got yourself a one-of-a-kind designer original floral purse perfect for fancy occasions, receptions and weddings. It would also be pretty to put one together with roses or daisies.

Sponsored by Rick Rack Attack--Vintage aprons that aren't just vintage reproductions they're vintage pieces.

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27 comments:

Beth (A Mom's Life) said...

This purse is absolutely ADORABLE!

Jennifer said...

What? These are listed on Esty? That's okay, this looks like a fun project. I bet one with bright gerber daisies would be cute for a spring toddler to carry around.

Janet said...

That's gorgeous. I have a dress that I could use that with. I love my glue gun. I had one for years and it blew up (literally - I almost burned down the theatre). I immediately had to go get a new one.

Jennifer said...

The purse looks really nice, and I love orchids.

Guinevere Meadow said...

I have had far too many hot glue gun "incidents" to try this for myself, lol! But it's gorgeous and I commend those of you who wield such weapons (er, artistic supplies) with ease.

Amber M. said...

I NEED ONE!

Thanks for bringing it to my attention...

PJ said...

You make it look so easy!!! But... I know from experience that mine would look like the pile of wilted flower petals fallen beneath plant!!!

Flea said...

Oh what fun! I love making hats, with which you could do the same thing! I'll have to try it out. :)

lapa37 said...

Very nice and I like how you have step by step pictures to go along with the instructions.

Maddy said...

Now THAT is lovely, although completely impractical and a dust magnet and likely to attract wasps to the unwary.

I wonder where you get those magnetic clasps? They could be really useful, a great replacement for all those darned fiddly zips.
Cheers

Doll Clothes Gal said...

Cool idea - and looks easy to make. Not to comfortable with the Hot Glue Gun though!

Beck said...

That post is GORGEOUS. I'm going to email it to my husband so he'll make me one, since I have a long and scary history of hurting myself with glue guns.

John and Laura said...

Bee-yoo-tiful! I love it! I want pictures of your asian-inspired dress and flower purse.

Heather said...

Gorgeous! i wanted to know if you'll be putting them on Etsy, too! If not, I may have to go craaaazy at the flower factory! Too cute!

Munchkins and Music said...

I saw you with this purse! I can't believe you made it! You always seize to amaze me.

cndymkr / jean said...

I love it! Great job. Kiddos to using the dreaded glue gun. I fear that thing.

killlashandra said...

Really, I don't need a purse. I don't even own one. ;) But, looks like a great craft.

kawaii crafter said...

your purse looks great, and I like how you chose orchids, which makes it look rich

Jthemilker said...

Your purse is beautiful! I DO need one!!!! You beat me to the punch on my award giving this morning. I apologize. I ran out of time this morning and didn't get to tell you. I love your blog. I love the interesting ideas, crafts, fun things to do, recipes, and you have THE BEST giveaways ever!!! You truly are Brilliant!!!

Michelle A. said...

I love the orchids on the purse, it's very beautiful!

Jane Hamilton said...

That is such a beautiful purse!! You are really good at this. But there's no way in the world I'll ever make that. I'm not very adept at such things. Still, I'll find my happiness in imagining myself having one like it! :P Great post, btw!

mannequin said...

I think this is perfect for a summer outdoor wedding!
Now you've got my mind whizzin about all the different kinds of flowers one could choose. The orchids though are just perfect!

Damselfly said...

Sigh. I keep thinking how fun it would be to make a purse. Maybe I'll just buy one from you.

I'm a purse junkie too.

TONYA said...

gorgeous, I've just saved this post in my favorites. I'll let you know when I've made one.

Melanie said...

Love the purse...beautiful!!

HOBO said...

Nice.

Tessa said...

What a gorgously delectable purse!