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Thread: Bow Tucks Questions - Please help!

  1. #1

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    Hi, I am a newbie to the sewing scene, but I have somehow gravitated to making purses...so when I saw the pictures on the Quilting Board..I had to give it a try!

    While I did have problems understanding the pattern instrutions, I kept trying and I eventually got it! Of course, I sewed the button loop on the wrong side..but that was my fault for not being careful..newbies have to be very careful and review often..

    Anyway, I wondered if anyone else found the handles too short...my width of fabric was 42 inches long... so I made my handles 29 1/2 inches long..which is probably okay for me..but not standard.. I want to make this purse for relatives.. what is a good standard length for the handles..

    Also, I did not quilt my purse (but, I still love it!!). But, I read somewhere that quilting makes the purse more stable as after washing it keeps it more together instead of shifting around. What do you guys think?

    And, how do I quilt it, do I just draw lines that intersect using a ruler and marker?

    Finally, I am using 100% cotton. Is there a better fabric of choice? Some of the 100% cotton I have bought from Hancock's feels a little stiff. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    I just quilt straight lines sometimes horizontal sometimes vertical on mine, I felt it would help it hold up a little better especially if I wash it. My handles are just right. You could use about any fabric you wish, I am going to try some with upholstery samples.

  3. #3
    Senior Member B. Louise's Avatar
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    An easy way to quilt straight lines for a grid or diamonds is to mark your line with masking tape (blue) and then keep moving it over the width of the tape.

  4. #4
    Senior Member redpurselady's Avatar
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    I also use the blue painters tape and it so much easier to quilt it that way. I cut my handles at 26" - that means you have to cut 2 strips of fabric and fusible fleece for handles since you can't get two from one strip of fabric. I prefer the longer length since it really is more of a tote than a purse.

  5. #5
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    A couple of answers....Yes, quilting your fusible fleece to your fabric will make it a bit more sturdy and alleviate the problem of the fusible becoming 'unfused' and shifting on you. Not only did I quilt my outsides and lining, I also quilted my pocket pieces both for the inside of the bag and the outer pocket. On my purse, the botton fabric was a vertical stripe...I could have just followed the stripe, however, what I did was lay out my piece on my mat and draw a line from top left to bottom right on the 45 degree angle. Then, I turned and did the same thing so I had intersecting angles. Stich first on that line and then I used my quilting guide bar to stitch 1 1/2 inches on either side of that intial line until it was quilted. For my floral upper purse fabric, I free-motion quilted.

    As far as handle length goes...you can certainly make them any length you wish. Simply cut yourself another stip of width of fabric and fleece and cut them to the length you like. I think handle length is just a matter of personal preference. If I remember correctly, after cutting off the piece for the loop, I had 34 inches which cut in half allowed me to have 17 inch handles. I made the mini-Bow Tuck bag. I am not sure what the length is for the regular Bow Tuck bag.

    Regarding fabric choice...I used cotton fabric I purchased at my LQS...it is very nice to work with. Hope this helps you a bit!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    ...Finally, I am using 100% cotton. Is there a better fabric of choice? Some of the 100% cotton I have bought from Hancock's feels a little stiff. Thanks!
    Hancocks has some really great cottons, but they also carry some not so nice - maybe you got some of the lower quality cotton which often has sizing added to give it substance. Once you wash it, that sizing comes off and then the fabric may end up to "wimpy". There are also different weights of cotton - I've got some meant for drapery which is sturdier than quilters cotton, but still soft to the touch. So careful checking in the store to be sure you have what you want will help prevent this stiffness from happening again.

  7. #7
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    Did you perhaps get a heavier fabric than quilting cotton? like maybe kettlecloth or twill?

    This would actually work quite nicely for a tote as it is a heavier fabric.

    I like using home decor fabric for the same reason.

  8. #8

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    Thanks, that is good info!

    B

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Thanks, that is good info!

    B
    I really appreciate all the answers. I think I am ready now to start my second bow tucks tote! I will quilt the outside and the inside lining using the tape technique. And I think I will free motion the upper half of the outside. As for the material..I will ignore the sales of the hard cotton and stick with the cotton that has a softer and slightly heavier feel ! I am good to go!

    B

  10. #10
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Thanks, that is good info!

    B
    I really appreciate all the answers. I think I am ready now to start my second bow tucks tote! I will quilt the outside and the inside lining using the tape technique. And I think I will free motion the upper half of the outside. As for the material..I will ignore the sales of the hard cotton and stick with the cotton that has a softer and slightly heavier feel ! I am good to go!

    B
    Sounds like you are ready for a second tote. Aren't they fun. I can't wait to make a second one.

  11. #11
    Junior Member Lilaciris's Avatar
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    I have only made one Bow Tucks purse so far and there are definitely a few things I would do differently.

    First, I would quilt the material used for the top half of the bag first and then cut it to size. I would do the same for the bottom piece. Then I would sew them together. The FMQing has a tendency to "shrink" down a little and I found that my pieces were slightly smaller than what the pattern called for.

    I made the handles a length that was comfortable for me. I don't think I even measured. I also used the cotton tubing that is normally used in making your own piping in upholstery projects.

    I would also make my loop for the button closure a little smaller.

    Oh, and I used blue jeans for the bottom piece.

  12. #12

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    Lilaciris, can you post a pic of your tote with the jean bottom?

    B

  13. #13
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    I make the handles longer then called for in the pattern because I like to be able to put my purse over my shoulder and have it comfortable at my side. I also put a strip of elastic in with batting before I stitch it to give the handles a little more stability. (The elastic doesn't make it stretchy, it just gives it a sturdy feel.)I love that purse pattern. So do friends and family ------- I have made at least 20 of them!! Oh, also, I don't use the button. I use a magnetic catch. Also, ordered a bunch of metal feet to keep the bottom off of the floor. Keeps it a little bit cleaner.

  14. #14
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    Oh, I like the idea of free motion quilting before cutting...don't know why I didn't think of that! I, too, am ready to make another one. My first was the mini-
    Bow Tuck and next I will do the regular sized one. I, too, am thinking the next time I will just do the magnetic closure. Very good ideas from everyone!

  15. #15
    Junior Member Lilaciris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Lilaciris, can you post a pic of your tote with the jean bottom?

    B
    Sure, here are a couple
    Attached Images Attached Images



  16. #16
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    2pedersons, where are you purchasing the metal feet from? I would like to use these also.

  17. #17
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    Everyone's purses are so pretty.

  18. #18
    Carol Carter's Avatar
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    very pretty

  19. #19
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    I found lots of different distributors online by putting "purse feet" into search. I don't have the name of the place I chose to order them from but, the feet were shipped from Hong Kong. There are several different sizes. I got the 14 mm ones. Also, different colors available. Hope this helps. Sorry I didn't keep the name and address of the company. I ordered 100 so figured I wouldn't need the info any time soon :roll:

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lilaciris
    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Lilaciris, can you post a pic of your tote with the jean bottom?

    B
    Sure, here are a couple
    Oh my! They are beautiful. I couldn't quite picture it..but I see how you did it! Hmmm... gives me an idea. I am almost done with my second bow tucks and will post pictures too...

    B

  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Quote Originally Posted by Lilaciris
    Quote Originally Posted by barbyq10
    Lilaciris, can you post a pic of your tote with the jean bottom?

    B
    Sure, here are a couple
    Oh my! They are beautiful. I couldn't quite picture it..but I see how you did it! Hmmm... gives me an idea. I am almost done with my second bow tucks and will post pictures too...

    B
    Okay, here they are. I must admit, they look better quilted!
    Attached Images Attached Images



  22. #22
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    Just an added note on the feet. Be careful ordering on line. There are some that are way overpriced. There are also some that are really reasonable.

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