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Thread: French Seam Purse Tutorial

  1. #1
    Power Poster Rhonda's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
    Salem Iowa
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    French Seam Purse Tutorial

    Here is the first step to making my French Seam Purse. It is an easy to make purse that you can make at any size you like. The French Seam just makes it a quick and easy project.

    I am primarily a miniaturist so my first purse was a pieced mini. but I also made a larger size with no piecing. The large one started with 12" squares. I used a fun print for the larger size.

    I pieced a mini quilt for the front of my little purse. I aimed for 5" to 5 1/2" for the entire front. This is the quilted block plus the borders.

    I used my Boston Blocks to make the quilt top.
    Boston Block directions - Rhonda's NEW UPDATED Boston Block Tutorial - No Waste Methods

    I made the Boston Blocks.
    then I sewed 4 of them together into a 4 patchU n
    I made 4 - 4 patch units
    Then sewed 2 of my 4 patches together
    I made a second half and then joined both halves to make the top.

    Then I added borders to get the size I wanted for the top.

    Now to continue --

    Here are my purses--

    The small one is 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" finished and the larger Minion purse is 11 1/2" x 11 1/2"

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    A french seam means you sew the seam and then turn it right side out and sew over the first seam to enclose it in the second seam. This puts all the raw edges inside the seams.

    You will need:
    for the front of your purse = [if piecing this is the whole of the piecing plus border]
    small size - 5" (choose your size) large size - 12" ( choose your size could be 18" etc)

    3 squares of fabric the same size as your front -
    Velcro strip to fit across the top of the purse.
    Cut it 3/4" shorter on both ends than the width of the front

    Here is my top for the mini purse. And the squares for the rest of the purse.

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    Sew on the velcro to two of the squares. I sewed mine on 3/4" below the top edge. And as you can see my sewing on the velcro is far from perfect. But no one is really going to see it.
    I like to sew around it at least twice and I backstitch on the ends several times to give it lots of stability and staying power.

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    Once you have both of your velcro sewn on then you need to sew one of them to the front section.

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    Repeat this with the other half. So now you have two halves folded in half with velcro on the inside
    fabric. I like to sew a finish seam along the top edge about 1/4" down from the top edge. This helps give it some stability and makes it look finished.

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    Now place the two halves together face to face. Pin in place.
    Sew along the sides and the bottom. I used 1/8" seam allowance on the mini but on the bigger one I used 1/4" for the first seam.

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    Now turn the purse right side out and pin in place.
    Sew along the edges and the bottom again. Use a slightly wider seam allowance than you used for the first seam. This will make sure the raw edge will be hidden inside your second seam.
    I like to backstitch several times at the top edge when you sew your seams. This will keep the seam from being weak and giving way with a lot of use. It makes it sturdier and will wear longer.

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    Here you can see the inside of the larger bag that I made. The raw edge is enclosed within the two seams you sewed. It leaves the inside seam clean and nice looking.

    I realized as I was making this one that you could make these reversible. You could use a tab and button instead of the velcro. I am adding a large snap to this bag.
    Also I didn't use any batting but you could add that in to make the bag a bit sturdier. FMQ would of course add to the look as well if you're so inclined.
    I made handles for this one but you could use webbing for handles if you don't want to make your own. Actually I just bought webbing so I could use it for the next purse!

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    So I hope you enjoy this easy project!
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  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Waynesboro, Tn.
    Thanks for the tute,Rhonda, great idea!! Now why didn't I think of that? Going to give it a try on my next bag!

  3. #3
    Super Member LoriEl's Avatar
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    Feb 2011
    Monroe, NJ
    Blog Entries
    Thanks. I have to remember this.

  4. #4
    Super Member gramquilter2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Somewhere North
    Great tutorial.
    I don't know how to do that.....YET!

  5. #5
    Super Member annette1952's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Harrison, MI
    Great tute Rhonda. Thank you

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Thank you for sharing everything!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Great tutorial. thank you

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