Upcycled Tote,With (Quasi) Tutorial
This is my first time ever making a purse, and so now I can finally post in this category! (Thanks to my Mini 13 Days of Halloween swap partner, Quaggy, who is the recipient of this gift, and was my muse as well.
This handsewn purse took 20 hours, 2 floppy office binders, a pair of black jeans, a skirt, a shirt, two spools of heavy duty thread (white, and black), a set of four purse rings (79 cents) and fighting off three kitties with a passion for string.BEFORE:
From this (that T-shirt is next in line for upcycling! oog.):
The outside of the tote, pre-upcycle (skirt):
The inside of the tote, pre-upcycle (shirt):Not pictured: an innocent pair of black jeans, now deceased.QUASI-TUTORIAL:
1. I stuck the blouse inside out inside the skirt (the top opening for the blouse exactly matched the waist opening for the skirt), and sewed them together using a white stitch, making sure not to stitch the skirt's functioning zipper closed. (Left arrow.) (Stitching shown on completed purse.)
2. I reenforced that stitching by adding a line of black back-stitch around the whole purse about 1/2 inch below the white, making sure to not sew the skirts functioning zipper closed (right arrow).
3. I cut apart 2 of those floppy office binders, creating four "covers" and four "folds of binder" pieces.
4. I put two covers on top of each other, wrapped them with a piece of black jeans, and stitched the base pieces together.
5. I sewed the base in place, but to the "blouse" only.
View of "base", sewn to "blouse" (picture taken after purse completed):
6. I sewed the "folds of binder" into the corners of the purse using an invisible backstitch.
7. I inserted one binder cover into the front of the purse, and one into the back---in between the "blouse" and "skirt".
8. I created a fabric "pocket" and stitched it in place behind the skirt's functioning zipper, creating a pocket for the purse.
9. I sewed the outer "skirt" to the base/blouse at the bottom of the purse, in the order shown (Picture shown after purse completed).
- First, the flat long side.
- Second, the other flat long side.
- Third, evened the gathers (though not very well), and sewed.
- Fourth, evened the gathers (though not very well), and sewed.
10. I made handles and handle holders using black jeans and a set of 4 (79 cent) silver purse rings.
The tote, final.
I handstitched the whole thing, since I don't own a sewing machine. The end result has all sorts of personality flaws, and next time around I'd know how to do it much better. Fortunately, Quaggy, its new owner, seems very happy with it.
For a first try, I figure it's not bad.
As always, comments and criticisms are welcome!