Sew a small handbag

Sew a small handbag

- Categories : Sewing

Sewing a lined handbag

As with our large shopping bags, the base for this gorgeous bags is the fabric we use for our printed tea towels.
It is a thick weave cotton/polyester fabric which is very solid.
Available in Coquecigrues, The Queen’s Bedchamber, Josephine’s Roses and Sajou Private Collection Scissors.
Size of finished bag: : 32 x 20cm - handles 17cm.
Sajou handbags to sew in thick fabric

What you will need

We highly recommend that you watch our video, you will discover all our tricks and tips to make this simple bag.

Cutting out the different pieces

Take care when cutting out the pieces to respect the direction of the fabric. See diagram below.
Cutting layout Sajou handbag to sew
For the first swatch, remove the borders at the top and bottom, then cut out the following pieces:
  • Piece A: front of bag, 36cm wide by 27cm high, with Sajou logo;
  • Piece B : back of bag, 36cm wide by 27cm high;
  • Piece C: base of bag, 36cm wide by 12cm;
  • Pieces D and E : the two handles, 9cm wide, length 48cm. Do not remove the white borders.
For the second swatch, for lining your bag, cut a piece measuring 36 by 50cm. There will be enough fabric left for a little matching pouch.

Assembling the front, back and base of bag

Place right sides together piece A (front) and piece C (base). Pin and sew together.
Place right sides together piece B (back) and the base. Pin and sew together.
Press open the seams with an iron.

Placing the magnetic button clasp

On the wrong side of piece A, mark a line at 1cm from the top edge, and a second 3cm from this line.
Trace the lines and mark the centre (18cm).
The magnets have a positive and negative side, so make sure to get the right side up.
Place in the middle of the top between the two lines.
Trace all around the plastic on the right side of the fabric. This is easier if you hold it up on a window.
Pin into place, then topstitch all around at 0.5cm from the line.
Repeat on piece B. Cut off any excess plastic.
With the wrong side facing you, fold the fabric along the first line and press with an iron.
Fold over again at the second line and press with an iron.

Making the handles

Fold along the white band and press with an iron.
Fold over 1cm on the other side and again press with an iron.
Fold again in half and topstitch all around at 2 millimetres from the edge.
Repeat for the second handle.

Assembling the handles and the lining

Place the bag flat on a table, right side facing you. Using the centre mark as a reference, make a mark at 5cm on each side.
Place each end of the first handle on the marks, as shown on the video, and pin solidly in place.
Place the lining fabric, right sides together, pin and stitch at 1cm from the edge.
Repeat on opposite side. Remove all the pins.
Line up the seams as shown on the video, so you have the lining on one side and the exterior on the other side.
Pin and stitch all along one side at 1cm from the edge.
On the other side, do the same, but leave an opening of 10cm on the lining side.

Forming the boxed corners of the bag

Start with the lining. Fold the corner flat and mark at 5cm vertically from the point.
Trace a horizontal line from this mark. Stitch and cut at 1cm from the stitch line.
Repeat on other side. For the exterior, it is exactly the same, but with the vertical line at 5.2cm from the point.

Finishing the bag

Turn the bag inside out, flatten the seams with your fingers.
Iron the opening and stitch as close to the edge as possible.
Place the lining inside the bag. Press the top of the bag, especially on the handles.
Pin the handles solidly in place and then stitch all around the top at 2mm from the edge.
A last press with an iron and your bag is ready to show off to all your friends!

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