Monday, 25 July 2016

How to Make a Frame Purse

The metal frame purse always has an antique feel to it, especially an antique rose print purse with bronze metal frame. What do you say to make a contemporary floral purse with an antique frame on top of it? To me, I like it so much. I think you will like it too. In this project, I use a 5cm arch metal frame with ball clasp and key ring for the top opening. The purse finishes at approximately 5.5cm across the body, 3.5cm across the bottom, 7cm tall and 3cm deep. Now, let me show you the way I create this mini frame purse step by step.

1. One piece of outer fabric
2. One piece of lining fabric
3. Batting / felt
4. 5cm metal frame
5. Matching embroidery thread & sewing thread

** I use felt for batting in this project.

Step 1: Purse frames come in difference shapes and sizes, so you will have to draft your own purse template according to your frame. Firstly, place your frame on a piece of paper and draw closely around the the outside of it, stopping when you reach the hinges.  Be sure to mark the hinge points, it is important for you to design your pattern afterwords.

Once you have finished drafting the arch, take away the frame and draw a horizontal line from hinge to hinge (point a-b). Then, find the center of your horizontal line and draw a vertical line at the center from the top curve to a desired height. The height of the vertical line is determined by the height of the purse and the width of the base. For example, my desired height for this purse is 7cm and the width at the base is 3cm, so, I have to draw a 8.5cm vertical line.

Formula :  The height of the vertical line = The height of the purse + (1/2 X the width of the purse)
                                                               = 7 + (1/2 x 3)
                                                               = 7 + 1.5
                                                               = 8.5

After that, design your own pattern with the basic drafting. To create a puffy purse, you have to create a larger arch. To do so, you can extend the side of the arch at your desired angle. In this project, point c is my desired point where I start to draw a line out and point d is my new hinge point. Please note that the length of c-b and c-d must be equal. You can now draw the second vertical line down from the new hinge point to the desired height and draw a horizontal line to connect the vertical lines. You only need to complete one side of the drafting, then fold and cut both out together to make them symmetrical.

Step 2: Fold the paper along the vertical line and cut out the pattern. You will get exactly parts facing each other when you open up the piece. This is half of the pattern piece, you will have to cut fabric on a fold.

Step 3: Now, fold the outer fabric just wide enough to accommodate the paper pattern with the right sides together. Place the paper pattern on the fabric and line up the bottom edge along the folded edge of the fabric as shown in the photo. Pin the paper pattern in place. Trace along the paper pattern (this step is optional for your outer fabric but it is necessary for the lining fabric as well as the batting). Leave a  0.7cm seam allowance for the other three sides and cut the fabric piece out (don't cut the folded edge) . Do the same for the lining fabric and the batting. Then, transfer the seam line to the back of the fabric using the tracing paper and tracing wheel so you will have the full size piece with a complete seam line when you open up the piece.

Step 4: After you have cut out the outer piece, lining piece and the batting, pick the outer fabric and the batting. Place the batting on the wrong side of the outer fabric, align the edges properly and baste along the edge.

Step 5: Then, fold the layers in half with wrong sides facing out. Sew down the two sides as shown in the photo.

Step 6: Now, it is time to create a box bottom for the purse. Open the bottom and squish the purse corner so the side seam lie directly over the bottom crease. This will flatten out the corner into a triangle. After that, draw a 3cm straight line across the corner. Do the same for the other corner. The bottom of the bag takes shape as two corners are boxed. Repeat step 5 & 6 for the lining piece.

Step 7: After making the box bottom for the outer and lining purse you will have to join the pieces together . Insert the outer piece (right side facing out) inside the lining piece (right side facing in). Line up the seams properly and pin in place. Sew around the top edge leaving a 3-4cm opening for turning purse. Before you start turning, make a few small notches on the curve edge to reduce bulk so the curve will look smooth after turning.

Step 8: After you have finished joining the pieces and turn right side out, insert the lining purse into the outer purse and close the opening either with blind stitch or whipped stitch.

Step 9: You can now get ready to sew the purse into the frame. First of all, temporarily tie the hinges on both sides of the purse and roughly insert the top edge into the frame to keep everything in place. An alternative way to keep the frame in place is using clips or roughly sewing the purse into the frame (just roughly sew throng the purse body and over the frame top along the frame). All the temporary stitches will be removed once you have finished the purse.

Step 10: Thread your needle with the matching embroidery thread. Start sewing from the middle of the frame (this is optional, you can start sewing at one side of the frame, anyway the method of sewing purse into the frame are the same). Insert your needle from the inside and sew up through one hole and down through the next and so on. Since there isn't a hole on the back of the frame, so angle your needle about 45 degree as you sew. This will make a stitch on the very edge of the frame. Once you have sewn all the way across, sew all the way back again using alternate holes so the gaps between the holes will be fully filled. If you start sewing from the middle of the frame, you will need to repeat the same step for the other half and finish sewing at the middle of the frame. Knot at the back and hide the knot inside the frame.Repeat for the opposite frame piece.

Hooray, a cute mini frame purse is done!!

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