A long time ago (one of my first posts http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=123835.msg1195230#msg1195230
) I promised I would make a tutorial the next time I would make a handbag with my smart handle/shoulderstrap. Now I finally have made one and so here it is. It's a little bit different compared with the first one. I have moved the loops for the string down a little bit so they don't get in your way when getting something in the bag.
The flowers is designed, and digitzed by me. The are inspired of the many variations of the flower Dahlia.If you want to do this type of handle please feel free to do so, but please give me the credit and mention my name or link to this tread if you do.
Draw a pattern that you like, there must be enough room to place two straps on the fronts for the handles.
Cut out your pieces (on my photo you don't see the shoulderstrap and the top piece) Sew the straps on to the fronts. Don't forget to fold the top of the straps so that you get a loop for the string. Press a hard interfacing on the inside of the top,the fronts, the sides and the bottom. I used Viledon I think there is something similar called Timex.
Sew the side and front pieces together. If you want to embroider sew the last seam after you have embroidered.
Now the top. Use a zipper that's longer than the opening.
Mark the centerline and the distance from the centre to the place you want to place the seam on the zipper. I placed the seam 4 mm from the center.
Line up the zipper to the last marking (not the center). NB the way the zipper is facing the fabric. Sew the zipper on, be accurate where you start and end your sewing.
Twist the zipper and tuck the other side in under the first side. The edge should touch the first seam. Then sew the other seam, make sure you start and end in the same line as the first seam.
Cut between the lines and 45 degrees in the corner, as shown in the picture.
Turn the zipper to the other side and sew the triangle on the end. Make sure the thing you pull (don't now the word in English) is on the right side of the seam. Top stitch around the zipper.
Cut the corners on the top and bottom piece as in the picture (you cut away the seamallowens) The top piece and the bottom is sewn in the same way. Sew the side seam first.
Then sew the front seams and then at last the final side seam.
Make a lining just the same way but don't put a zipper in the top piece. The top piece is instead made out of to pieces of fabric. Sew a rectangle, the same size as the opening for the zipper. Cut as shown in picture (red line). Turn inside out and iron.
Turn the bag inside out and place the lining inside the bag and hand stitch around the zipper
Slip the string for the handle through the loops (I used two strings). Also put two beads in the middle of the front pieces (= 4 beads). The beads prevent the handle to mess around and end up uneven. The beads must be placed just inside the loops of the straps when the stings are used for the shoulderstrap (see the picture in the top). Sew the ends together and hide the ends inside a bead. When you find the right place for all the beads put some glue inside to hold them in place
Cut a piece of fabric in a suitable length for a shoulderstrap plus 10 cm and about 8 cm wide. Fold the fabric in four (don't forget to fold in the ends) and stitch all the way around. Put a pushbutton in the end. Make sure the smooth part of the button is placed on the right side of the fabric and about 5 cm up, and the other part of the button in the end (see the picture)
If you want some extra support in the bottom of the bag you can cut out a piece of decorating foam (the thick one, about 5 mm), shaped as the bottom piece, and put inside the bag.
I hope you can understand everything, ask if you don't.If you want to do this type of handle please feel free to do so, but please give me the credit and mention my name or link to this tread if you do.