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On a recent overnight visit to my grandparents' home, I left my make-up bag behind in their bathroom after taking my shower. My grandma brought it in to me a few minutes later and said, "Ken, Hon, you need a new make-up bag. This thing is terrible." I laughed because I have used the same make-up bag since I was 16 years old. I'll be 39 this year and my make-up bag definitely looks like I've had it since I was 16 years old.
Since my bag never leaves home with me other than in an overnight bag, I've never really cared that it's tattered and worn and pretty grungy. But my grandma inspired (embarrassed) a desire in me for a nice, new, pretty bag so I decided to make one. I'm also in need of a new coin purse so while I had my materials out, I made myself a new one of those, as well.
I'd share a photo of my old make up bag so you could see I used it as a pattern for my new one. But since my grandma who loves me more than life itself was disgusted with the old bag, I'll spare you!
The construction of the bag is very simple. The front, bottom, and back are one continuous rectangle of fabric and the 2 sides are also rectangles. So you'll begin by cutting a 14" x 9" piece of fabric and (2) 6" x 3 3/4" pieces. You'll need to cut the same pieces from contrasting fabric for the lining of the bag, leaving you with 2 large rectangles and 4 smaller ones.
If you want to create a multi-patterned large panel as I did, cut (3) 14" x 3 5/8" panels. Stitch the long edges of these panels together using a 1/2" seam allowance. Press the seams open.
Layer each piece (except lining pieces) over quilt batting and baste along the edges. Trim away any excess batting.
Create appliques using the Hearts Shape Template. I find the easiest way to work with appliques is to create a double-layered applique with the fabrics right-sides together and stitch along the outline. After cutting the shape out, make a snip in the back layer of the fabric and turn the shapes right-side out. Press the appliques and stitch them to the middle of the front of the large rectangle panel. The turning hole will be hidden when the applique is stitched to the bag.
Place the front panel on the corresponding lining panel, right-sides together. Stitch along the long edges (only) using a 1/2" seam allowance. Turn the panel right-side out and press. Do the same with the side panels but stitch around all the edges, leaving an opening for turning. After turning them right-side out, hand stitch the turning opening closed.
Locate the center of each long edge of the large panel, as well as the center of each side panel. Pin the side panels to the large panels, matching these center points.
Fold the sides of the long panel up and pin the edges to the side panels. Stitch all the panels together using a 1/4" seam allowance.
Using the zipper foot of your sewing machine, baste one side of a 10" zipper to the inside edge of one side of the bag.
Prior to basting the zipper to the bag, you can pin a piece of trim to the front edge of the bag so that when you baste the zipper on, it will pick up the trim piece as well.
Baste the other side of the zipper to the other edge of the bag, opening the zipper as needed (with your needle in the down position) to allow the presser foot to pass easily. Use 1" seam binding tape to cover the raw edges of the zipper and fabric panels. Cut (2) 4" x 2 3/4" pieces of fabric and fold and press all the edges over to the wrong side of the fabric 1/4". Fold the pieces in half long way and press so that you have (2) squares. Stitch these squares over the ends of the zipper to create decorative tabs as seen in the photo of the finished bag.
The coin purse is made similarly, only round instead of rectangular.
Using the 4 1/2" circle from the Super Size Shape Templates, trace (2) circles, for front and back, and (2) circles for the lining. Make marks 1/2" from the edge of the cirlces all the way around the circle to create a seam allowance. Cut the circles out using the marks you made as a guide. Create appliques using the Hearts template and stitch them to the front panel. Follow the instructions for the side panels on the make up bag to add quilt batting and assemble the panels.
Cut (2) 3" x 2 3/4" pieces of fabric and (2) lining pieces of the same dimensions. Follow the instructions for the large front panel of the make up bag to add quilt batting and assemble the pieces. You will have (2) short tubes of fabric. Turn the edges of these under 1/4" on each end.
Cover the edges of a 9" zipper using 1" seam binding tape.
Slide the short tubes of fabric over the ends of the zipper and stitch them to the zipper. Pin the 2 ends of the strip together and stitch them with a long zig-zag stitch.
Match the zig-zag stitched seam to the center of the panel with the appliqued heart. The center will be right below the point of the heart. Pin the pieces together, keeping the edges of the strip and the edges of the circle matched until you reach each end of the zipper. Stitch these pieces together using a 1/4" seam allowance, just as you did when stitching on the sides of the make up bag. Blindstitch the edges of the zipper/seam binding tape to the lining of the panel. The zipper will be recessed so it will not line up with the edges of the circles. Just take care to attach it evenly all the way around as you stitch. Repeat this process with the back panel of the purse.
Add embroidery stitches as desired.
When you're finished, you have 2 pretty new bags you'll be proud to throw in your purse or overnight bag!
Embroidery floss (optional)
Eyelet trim (optional)
10" zipper for make up bag
9" zipper for coin purse