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Personalised handbag

April 17, 2018

I recently made a handbag as a gift for a friend, using a pattern from a book ‘Carry Me: 20 Boutique Bags to Sew’ by Yuka Koshizen.  The pattern is called ‘Left Bank Granny Bag’, and is the one shown on the front cover.  I’ve had the book for several years – it was a gift from my friend Aileen – and I’m glad I finally used it!

I chose some navy butcher stripe canvas for the outer fabric, and lined it with red gaberchino.  The result is a hard-wearing but soft bag, very much like a Cath Kidston cotton duck handbag, in a nautical style.  I added an inside pocket to the lining (but omitted the zip) and I appliqued the recipient’s name on the front of the bag to make it stand out.  I also added some red ric-rac along the handle.

Although some patterns in the book are included at the back, this bag was one you can draft yourself using the measurements suggested, which was fairly straightforward (I actually changed the measurements to my own specifications).  The instructions, although clear, were accompanied by diagrams over the page, so it did involve a bit of flicking back and forth between the instructions and the diagrams, but it wasn’t a major problem.  The bag came together in an afternoon.

I used my Simflex gauge to help with the pleats

I have never really been into making bags, but I must admit I could be tempted to make one for myself as I really like how this turned out.  It’s a practical style that slings easily over the shoulder and is surprisingly roomy.  It opens out nice and wide so you could fit loads in, but it hangs nicely and holds its shape when it’s empty, too.

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