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- *You can also use a 12cm zip – cut 14.5cm x 26cm of each fabric
- • 10cm nylon zip*
- • Fabric for the outside of the purse and the lining - 12.5cm x 22cm of each fabric*
- • Light woven interfacing for both inside and outside of the purse (optional, but it makes it look better!)
- • One 16.5cm strip of ribbon or trim for the strap
- • Thread to match your fabric
Step 1. Download the Project Sheet
Cut out a rectangle in each fabric (and interfacing if you’re using it) to the dimensions listed above. You can cut all the layers together.
TIP: A rotary cutter and quilting ruler make cutting rectangles EASY and ACCURATE!!
Fuse the interfacing to the fabric.
Fold the outside purse piece in half (matching the two SHORT ends) and cut a 2-3mm nick in the halfway point on both sides.
Lay the zip face down on the right side of the OUTSIDE purse piece. Line up the edge of the zipper tape along one of the short ends of the fabric so that the chain (or teeth) of the zip are still on the fabric. Centre the zip along the fabric edge so that there is the same amount of seam allowance either side of the metal ends (stoppers) on the zip.
Sew the zip to the fabric about 3mm from the zipper chain (teeth), backtacking both ends of the seam.
• The best place to sew the zip is on a marked line or change in the weave of the tape.
• The needle is always on the CHAIN side of the zipper foot. On most machines you can move either the foot or the needle to accommodate whichever side is most comfortable. You may change sides several times throughout the course of sewing up a purse.
• Start sewing the zip in place when it is OPEN. When you’re about half-way along the length of the zip, stop the machine and lower the needle. Lift the presser foot and close the zip. This is so that you don’t have to sew around the zipper head.
Lay the lining fabric face down over the right side of the fabric and zip. (The fabrics are right sides together and the zip is sandwiched in between).
Sew the lining into place, following the first line of stitching along the zip.
Hold on to the zip and turn the lining and fabric to the right side. Press them both away from the zip.
Topstitch about 2mm from the edge of the seam.
Fold the outside purse piece (right sides of fabric to the inside) and match the other short edge to the side of the zipper tape.
Sew the zipper to the fabric as in Step 6.
Fold the lining in half (right sides of fabric facing each other) and sew it in place as in Step 8.
Turn the fabric to the right side and press it back from the zip.
Topstitch the fabric as in Step 9. It’s a little fiddly now that the purse is more enclosed. It’s easier with the zipper open.
Turn the purse wrong sides out. Fold the purse body so that the closed end of the zip is lining up with the nick in the centre of the purse body.
Fold the lining on the other side of the zip so that it mirrors the outside of the purse.
At the end where the zipper is closed, sew across all four layers of fabric and the zip end.
Fold the ribbon or strap in half (into a loop) and line up its raw ends with the raw edge of fabric about 1.5cms from the open end of the zipper. Tack it into place.
Pinch the open ends of the zipper tape together, with the right sides of the outside fabric together. Pin them together to align the two metal zip ends (or stoppers).
Smooth the purse body into a neat fold between the nicks. Smooth the lining into a fold on the other side of the zip. Put a pin in the lining, about 4cms from the fold.
Start at the nick (and fold) on the outside piece, and sew straight across to the pin in the lining. You should have a large enough gap in your lining seam to turn your purse through to the right side.
Trim the seam allowances and zipper tape to reduce bulk at the zipper end.
Turn the purse through to the right side.
Anchor the corner of the lining to the seam allowances of the corner of the purse with a few hand stitches and close the gap in the lining by hand or machine