Momma has a new purse! I love it so much. For the exterior I used laminated cotton fabric from laminates.etsy.com. The thing I love about laminated fabric is that it looks great (practically new) for so so long. Like forever.
The pattern is Ellen Luckett Baker's free pleated tote tutorial. I've been wanting to try this pattern since I found it several years ago, and let me tell you... it does not disappoint!
I even used a tiny bit of fabric from Ellen's Garden Collection to make the pockets, just because. :)
But the handles and hardware might be my favorite part. They look expensive, but guess what? They came from the thrift store! And you can watch me finding them. Check out the video I made below or on YouTube:
After you shop for the best handles and cut them off the old bag (see the video for that), you can use your thrifted handles for just about any purse or tote bag pattern.
These thrifted purse handles already had pretty silver rings attached. All I had to add were the green tabs and then I could sew them into the new bag following the tutorial. Here's how I did it:
Cut 4'' squares of fabric or faux leather (this is left over from my rockstar top). Adjust the width and length if necessary for your hardware.
Fold the edges to the middle, press, and then press in half again. I had to use a press cloth on the vegan leather.
Topstitch along both edges. I wiped a drop of oil across the bottom of my sewing machine foot to prevent sticking.
Then fold one tab through each ring and zig zag the ends together to secure. Easy!
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