Sometimes you come across a fabric that you just HAVE to have. You textile lovers know what I am talking about! Now, usually when this happens for me it is a print fabric – I am mad for prints! Or maybe its a super soft linen, or fun stripe. But on this occasion, it was a vinyl.

Vinyl? I know…odd, right?!

It was just sitting there in the outdoor fabric section, with all the tablecloths. And it was smooth. as. butter. No, not butter – butta.

I would have sworn this stuff was a nice soft suede! I had to have it!

And the best part about fabrics that you fall in love with on the spot? You usually have already half formed the project you want to make in your mind before you have even purchased it! I knew instantly that I wanted to make this ‘hard and soft’ purse. The sharp edges of the vinyl mixed with the soft flowy satin texture.



The trick was working with the material, and with words that are rarely uttered in context with my sewing…I had to pull out the glue gun! Lol

Now, don’t get me wrong – there are ways to get around using hot glue! Very often the tape trick works, I just didn’t have luck this time around with it. Or with a little patience you can definitely hand sew the parts that I used glue on. I had just run out of that particular virtue on this fateful day.

Let me show you how I did end up making this bag…

First decide how large you want the bag to be, and cut out your rectangles of fabric accordingly – all the same size.
(2) exterior satin fabric rectangles
(2) exterior vinyl fabric rectangles
(2) lining fabric rectangles (I used a nice sturdy home decor fabric for this)

You will also need 1 large strip for the strap (your desired length x approx. 5″W)

(2) smaller strips for the handles (your desired length x approx. 3.5″W)

(2) small strips the same length as your purse’s width x 2″W

(2) small rectangles of fabric 4″W x 5″L

(1) set of D Rings

Once you have all your pieces cut, we can get started.

First taking your vinyl fabric pieces, fold in half and place them in a pile one on top of the other – lining up the folded center. Cut out an arc from the middle outside of the bag, up towards the top center (approximately 2″ away from center). This will eventually be turned into a kangaroo style pocket on the front of your purse. If you are using vinyl like me, no need to hem the cut edge. If using fabric, you may want to put a bias tape trim on the edge.

Now, taking your handle strap strips, fold in half wrong sides together and stitch along the outer raw edge, creating a tube of fabric. Turn the tube right side out. Repeat for both handle straps. (I always use the safety pin method when doing this – but let me tell you, it was tough with this vinyl fabric. The pin kept getting stuck!)

Now, take your kangaroo vinyl pocket piece, and pin to the top of your satin fabric. Baste stitch the very top, and bottom sides to the edges of the satin, to hold in place. Repeat for other vinyl and satin pieces.

Once you have baste stitched the vinyl onto the satin of both pieces, place them right sides together, matching up the raw edges. Pin around the sides and the bottom. Sew.

Clip the bottom corner edges as close to the stitching as you dare.

Turn bag right side out and you should now have what looks like the picture above.

Sew your lining fabric rectangles right sides together at the sides and bottom as we did before, and turn right side out. Slip lining inside the exterior fabric purse, matching up the side seams. Pin and baste stitch very closely to the edge to secure.

Take your (2) small 2″ strips and place them right sides together, matching up the small edges, and sew together along the smaller edge on both sides. This will give you a circle of fabric, which we will use as bias tape for the top of the bag.

Matching up the side seams, pin to the top of the bag. I pinned mine to the exterior of the purse, wrong side of the circle against the right side of the bag, leaving an inch overhanging the top of the purse.

As I mentioned earlier, my vinyl was so sticky – that nothing I did would eliminate the sewing machine stick factor. So in the next step I was flying blind a little bit. But I sewed the circle of fabric on, with the lining side up and the bobbin thread going on the exterior of the purse, this way I wasn’t dealing with any ‘stick’. I had to be very careful to sew a nice straight line.

Now we are getting into the ‘Make it Work’ moments. When I am realizing just how sticky this particular vinyl is! AKA – I AM PULLING OUT THE GLUE GUN DARN YOU FABRIC! Lol

Folding over the top of the bias tape trim, towards the lining of the purse, I hot glued the other edge to the inside of the purse.

Next, I took my handle straps and pinned them to the top of the purse. I sewed them on, once again with the lining facing up and not seeing my stitching, using a rectangle sewn on the bottom of each strap to secure.

At this point I realized I couldn’t get my straps to be flat…how do I get around that? Da, da, da da! With another small strip of scrap fabric of course! Using the wrong side of the vinyl, I put a small dab of hot glue on one end, and then kept wrapping the fabric around the handle until I got to the other side. Another dab of hot glue, and the fabric was secure! Moving on…

I knew from the beginning that I wanted this to be more than a tote. I wanted it to have a strap as well, so that the bag would fold over at the top when put on your shoulder.

To achieve this look, I first had to make the large strap. Now here is the only place I wish I hadn’t hot glued, and would have taken the extra time to hand stitch. I simply hot glued the raw edges closed in the back – since I knew it wouldn’t lie flat any other way. But, this resulted in a slightly lumpy strap. Which is why you see in the end result pictures, the strap is all folded together and tied in the middle, so that the lumpiness doesn’t show. So please, take the time and whip stitch your long strap closed!

Set aside the strap for now.

You will need (2) small rectangles of fabric, approximately 4″ x 5″.

Fold in half right sides together, and match up the 5″ edge. Sew edge. Turn tube right side out and repeat for other rectangle.

Find the middle of your exterior purse, along the side seam, and pin the bottom edge to it.

Slip on one of the D Rings, and fold over the other top edge of the rectangle, meeting it to the bottom edge that you just sewed on. Pin and sew closed. Repeat for other side.

Once you have your D Rings in place, simply loop the longer strap through each D Ring, folding over or under the edge and whip stitch (or in my case – hot glue) closed!

We are almost done…

You will notice that if you fold over the top of the purse now, the vinyl kangaroo pocket will get wonky. Just take a a little thread and hand stitch a couple of ‘X’ stitches along the side of each pocket, I did mine about 5″ down from the top of the purse. This will take care of how the purse pocket folds!

Now you are finished!

Seeing as how this purse can’t go in the washer / dryer anyway, I don’t see how the hot glue can hurt. And it definitely saved me time on production. Either way, it makes the perfect gift for that teenager in your life…

After all, one must keep your babysitter happy!!! Thanks Bethany for all you do for us, you are awesome and our kids love you!

I am glad this favorite fabric found its home on your shoulder :).

Thanks so much for stopping by, and until next time…

Happy Sewing!