Fat Quarter Handbag Tutorial

on February 9 | in Sewing Tutorials + Patterns | by | with 222 Comments

Jennifer generously shares some great sewing tips in this Fat Quarter Handbag Tutorial. Many of the handbags shown in the tutorial are for sale in Jennifer’s shop, so be sure to check it out!

The Simple and Sleek Fat Quarter Handbag from Jennifer

FQMJHsweettrees.jpg

Sweet Trees Clutch Purse

This simple and sleek fat quarter handbag is one of my favorite bags that I make. You know those days that are so hectic that you just want to go to bed feeling like you at least accomplished one complete task during the day? With a two year old, I have a lot of those days! This bag is a perfect way to complete an entire (and entirely beautiful!) project even if you don’t have a lot of time. With relatively few materials, the bag can be fairly inexpensive, as well.

For the basic bag, you need only a fat quarter of fabric in a print you love. Add in some coordinating solid fabric for the lining, a pair of purse handles, some thread, some interfacing for stiffness, and a magnetic snap, and you have a high-style bag on a low budget.

Basic bag construction:
1. With a straight edge, cut a two-inch strip off one edge of your fat quarter – this will be reserved for loops for your purse handles. Cut your remaining fabric in half to make the front and back panels of your bag. It usually doesn’t matter which direction you cut your fat quarter – experiment to see which way you prefer. Sometimes the print will be facing in one direction and that will determine your cut, but other times you can decide if you want your bag wider or longer.

2. Once your cuts are made, you can change the size of your bag, if you would like. Want it shorter or thinner? Cut away!
3. Cut two of the same sized pieces from your solid fabric for the lining of your bag, and cut four of these pieces from a stiff fusible interfacing.

4. Iron the interfacing onto the back of each piece of fabric and lining. It adds some needed stiffness to your bag.

5. Use the strip you cut off the edge of the fabric to make loops for your handles: the width of your particular loops will be determined by the size of the holes in your particular handles. Sew the strip with right sides together to make your desired width, turn the strip right side out, and press. Cut the strip in half and in half again so that you now have four. Loop them through your handles.


6. Pin each handle, right sides together, onto each printed panel of your bag (make sure they are centered!). You will want to adjust their height depending on your personal preference of how much you want them to stick out of the bag, your seam allowance (make sure you leave enough room for your zipper foot to get by!), and your particular style of handle.

7. Pin your lining fabric, right sides together, on top of your printed panel and handle. Sew this seam two, three, or maybe even four times. Your handles are a big stress point on the bag since they will be pulled so much – the stronger you make this seam, the better!
Tip: Use a zipper foot for this step, if you have one. It will allow you to get closer to your handles when sewing the seam. The larger foot tends to bump into the handles more and interrupt your straight line. Repeat this step with the other panel, as well.

8. Trim this seam to reduce bulk.
9. Add a snap to your bag, if you wish, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

10. With right sides together, pin your linings together and your printed panels together. Sew along all the edges of your bag, but leave a gap of about 4-5 inches in the bottom of the linings so you can turn your bag later.

11. Trim your seams to reduce bulk.
12. Now for my favorite part: turn your bag right-side out and see what you created!

Sew the opening in the bottom of the bag by hand, tuck your lining into the bag, and press for a finished look. Ta da! Isn’t it beautiful?

Variations:
The beauty of this bag is that if you use a fat quarter that you adore, you will automatically adore your bag! Its simple elegance allows your fabric to stand out. But it is also so easy to use the basic concept of the bag and modify it for some completely different, equally gorgeous, looks:

FQMJHgreenpink.jpg

Green and Pink Clutch Purse

  • Changing the bag’s shape is a simple, but effective way to get a completely new design. Instead of a rectangle, you can make your bag triangular. You can round the edges. You can even make your bag an oval shape.

    FQMJHbold.jpg

    Bold and Bright Clutch Purse

    Tip: fold your fabric panel in half vertically so that what you cut on one side will be identical to what you cut on the other side. Then your bag will be even. Use this panel as a pattern to cut your other panel, your linings, and your interfacings.

FQMJHnightday.jpg

Night and Day Clutch Purse

  • You can sew a piece of coordinating ribbon onto the bag as a focal point. Or, I like to add a contrasting ribbon for a funkier look. Here’s a tip: use a thin strip of fusible web (like Heat’n Bond) to iron your ribbon where you want it first. Then, when you sew it on, you will not have to worry about keeping it straight and sewing at the same time.

FQMJHscattered.jpg

Scattered Flowers Clutch Purse

  • Add a felt flower embellishment to one side of the bag. I always use 100% wool felt. You can sew the flower on by hand, or machine sew the edges for a different look.

FQMJHpatchwork.jpg

Patchwork Clutch Purse

  • If you’re a quilter, you might like to cut different fat quarters into squares and make a patchwork for your main panel. I used 12 different fat quarters for this bag above.

FQMJHJfans.jpg

Japanese Fans Clutch Purse

  • I love the look of a pleated handbag! Right after you cut your main panels, you can fold pleats into them with your hands, and then just pin the pleats in place. I like to be symmetric – if I make a 1” fold on one side, I like to make another 1” fold on the other side. But you can experiment! Keep folding until you like the look of the bag! Once you have the bag the way you like it, you can press the pleats lightly for a little added stability when working with your bag (but keep the pins in so the pleats don’t move). To cut your lining pieces and interfacing pieces, just lay the pleated piece of fabric on top of your lining and interfacing and cut around the new outline – that way, your lining can still be flat but also fit the shape of the bag neatly. Now just treat the bag as you normally would– as you sew all your seams, you will also sew your pleats into place!
  • Give your bag a flat bottom. It’s a cute look, and it gives you extra storage space, too.
You will do this step after you have sewn around all the edges of your bag, but right before you turn your bag right side out. Take a straight edge and cut out a square of fabric from each corner (usually 1.5” to 2.5” wide– depending on your personal style). Pinch the corners so that the sewn seams meet in the middle. Sew across this edge several times (again, there will be a lot of stress at this point, so you want to make sure it is secure). Repeat this in all four corners. When you turn your bag right side out, you will now have a flat bottom!

FQMJHJume.jpg

Japanese Ume Clutch Purse

  • Sew,Mama,Sew! has some great fat quarters to use when making these bags! Definitely check out their new “fat quarter” section and get some inspiration. Here’s another secret tip: cloth napkins are very similar to fat quarters! I always check out the housewares section anytime I go shopping. One napkin can make a very cute purse!

FQMJHdamask.jpg

Red Damask

The possibilities for these bags are endless! They are one of my favorite things to sew. I would love if you checked out my shop to see these bags, as well as some more of my handmade fat quarter bags!

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222 Responses to Fat Quarter Handbag Tutorial

  1. Leslie says:

    I have had this tutorial bookmarked for quite a while, and finally got around to making it. It turned out GREAT! Thanks so much for this awesome tutorial :)
    Here’s what it looks like: http://www.facebook.com/#!/photo.php?fbid=1692804634340&set=a.1163945093182.2025418.1064495829

  2. Becky says:

    Thank you for sharing this great tutorial!
    I made this purse in approx 2 hours from cutting to the final press, mind you with an infant and preschooler in the house ;)
    I top stitched around the top of the finished purse for even more durability.

  3. Amy says:

    Thanks for the tutorial. I wrote about the bag on my blog: http://sewingbythebook.blogspot.com/2010/09/fat-quarter-handbag.html.

  4. coco says:

    I’m having a lot of trouble with this bag. My zipper foot doesn’t look anything like the one Jennifer is using. It has a longish adjusting bar at the side and the handles get stuck there. I have a Brother sewing machine, very basic, and the zipper foot came with it.

    What to do???

    Coco

  5. Very impressive,Thank you

  6. irod says:

    I am a true beginner at sewing, and while the first bag took me 6+ hours (fused the interfacing to my ironing board’s cover, misread the instructions and had to rip a lot of seams, assembled the magnetic snap wrong–you name it, I did it) I have made 6 other purses since. The last one took me less than 2 hours from start to finish. I got so excited about all the variations I was able to fashion that I realized, too late, that I didn’t have any wooden handles left for my last 2 fat quarters…so I made straps from lining fabric to match those handbags. They ALL look great! Thanks for your generosity in creating this tutorial. Your clear instructions and pictures have helped me develop confidence and skill and have, perhaps more than any other project I’ve tackled so far, encouraged me to continue sewing.

  7. Julia in WDM says:

    After months of thinking and thinking, I just made this. it’s the fastest purse pattern in the u.s. !! thank you from the bottom of my newly happy-ed heart.

  8. Leslie says:

    You’re a good teacher!

  9. coco says:

    The bag is beautiful! Wonderful tutorial too. But I have a question. To create a box at the bottom, the illustration shows only the outer fabric. Do you take the lining fabric together with the outer and cut squares in both, or just the outer fabric?

    Thanks!

    Coco

  10. Debby says:

    OMG, I love the purse. The one with the trees are my favorite. The red and white is the next one. Love you color choices.

  11. Marcelle says:

    I love these bags, hope I can try to make one :)

  12. Dede Storer says:

    These bags could not be more adorable. The instructions are very clear. Query. Where do you get these fabrics?

  13. rein says:

    very cool tutorial. thanks. too bad i’m not very good with my hand but what the heck, i think i’ll give this a try anyway. :)

  14. Michelle B says:

    I have a question please. These directions are magnificent but I’m having a hard time trying to get it in my head when you sew the lining and panels together. I understand leaving the “hole” in the bottom so you can turn it inside out but how do you attach the very top. do you sew around that first, then the sides? Your wisdom is much appreciated :-)

  15. Heather says:

    I love these bags SO much. Thank you for sharing

  16. Dana says:

    I made one of these bags today after reading Jennifer’s tutorial. Mine’s not exactly like hers, but I like it and I’m sure I’ll get comments on it. I posted a picture on my blog if you want to take a look. Cheers and thanks for the tute.

  17. Holli S. says:

    Thank you! You’ve made my day, and I now have a new project to dream about! You can find a blog post about your tutorial here: http://www.hollisampson.com/2010/02/inspirations-home-made-handbags/ along with a link to your store. Tweets and facebook posts also.

  18. Nancy says:

    These are fabulous handbags. I want to try to make some handbags for my personal use. Thanks for the tutorial. I know I’ll get lots of comments and compliments on the bags I’m going to make.

  19. Kaye says:

    Thank you so much for this step by step tutorial! Please check out my website for the purse I made using this exact tutorial! I love my new purse and have had the accessories for a year but nothing was at my level, this was perfect! Thanks for sharing!

  20. Carol says:

    Those bags are beautiful and it is oh so wonderful of you to share step by step for us. I now have a great and inexpensive gift that I can give. You are a blessing!

  21. deirdre says:

    I just loved your bags. Thank you so much for the tutorial.

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  23. venus says:

    hi Ms. Jennifer…i love ur bag… im just a begginer in sewing i’m inspired w/ur bag…thanks!

  24. Sigrid says:

    I love how this simple style can be made in so many variations! I’m inspired, thanks!

  25. Jennifer says:

    oh oh!!! i’m in love this this bag and it’s many variations!! i will definitely have to make one, two or a few more for myself and friends.

  26. Mandy Harvey says:

    Great tutorial.

  27. Andrea says:

    I am just resuming sewing after 20 years!! I dug out my old dusty machine and it works…so far anyway. I feel like I have forgotten everything I once knew about sewing, I need a little encouragement and a super easy purse pattern. Any ideas?
    Thanks your purses are awesome.

  28. cheryl says:

    I love the versatility of this bag pattern. Quick and easy too!! I have loads of fat quarters in my stash and my fingers are itching to begin. Thank You!!!

  29. Sue says:

    Thanks so much. They are so cute and look simple to make. Again thanks

  30. Laura says:

    Fantastic, Fabulous, I love it!!!!

  31. Sara Amrhein says:

    Beautiful bags! I only wish it was that easy for me. I’ve been trying all day long to make a little clutch! No where near as nice as yours. Well done, I’m going to keep practicing. Thanks for the help!

  32. Tami says:

    ssooo CUte!!!

  33. Tami says:

    I just made my first stylish tote bag with a few things I had laying around!! It was pretty simple and alot of fun SO I am super excited to try a few of these out they look great!!!

  34. Nadia says:

    this is so cool I will try it! will they hold alot of stuff like cell phone, watch, keys etc or are they for show

  35. Steph says:

    I’m actually a papercrafter but am really keen to have a go at these fab bags!! Thanks so much for the tutorial and showing different versions of the bag! I have managed to find some material but where on earth do I find these handles?! lol I have googled bag handles but can’t seem to find anything like these! Thanks again for the fab tutorial – I’m dying to have a go!! :) x

  36. Gill says:

    Hi I love your bags, but can someone please tell me what a fat quarter is?

  37. Llewellynne Stonebraker says:

    I really like your bags. Can you please tell me how to download just the tutorial and leave off the comments. I don’t want to print 30pages. Thank you, Llewellynne

  38. Tiffany Bird says:

    How lovely! I linked to this tutorial on my site, http://www.simplymodernmom.com

  39. sonia says:

    Wonderful tutorial!!! It was what I nedded! Thank you soo much

  40. DIYBagLover says:

    Hi there!

    i have link ur tutorial in http://diybaglover.blogspot.com/.

    Hope u dont mind :)

  41. Amanda says:

    Super cute! I just found your site and am in love with all these fantastic tutorials. Thanks so much!

  42. Linda peckford says:

    Could you please tell me where I can purchase those handles

  43. Melany says:

    Just letting you know that I made a couple little purses using your tutorial this weekend. You can see pics on my blog! They turned out super cute!

    http://www.pilarinasboutique.blogspot.com

  44. Kelly says:

    I love all of these cute bags. I will have to try one of each. Thanks so much for posting!!!

  45. Melany says:

    Really cute! i’ve had something like this in mind to make for my sisters for months now. I think this is the perfect little purse to make! Thank you for sharing!

  46. Renata says:

    Thanks for sharing, going too look for a nice fabric, the handles and going to make one for me! I’m also giong to put a link to your blog on mine (I’m from Belgium but live in Italy).
    Thank you verry much for your kindness! Renata.

  47. apple cyder says:

    just catching up on your blog. this is brilliant!

  48. san says:

    thx jennifer for sharing. awesome bag !! I really love the sweet trees cluth fabric. Who is the fabric designer ? thx in advance.

  49. Julie says:

    Loooove your bag – I was just wondering where do you get your handles from or what brand are they? I just love the different designs. I am in Australia so if I could find out any details on them I would greatly appreciate it!
    Thanks

  50. Paula says:

    I love this bag so much! I’ve already made 3 with a stack more on the way for our sewing groups charity fundraiser. I even made the pretty FQ I had go a super long way by adding just a strip of it to my bag, hard to explain but I blogged about it here. http://sewlittlefabric.blogspot.com . Thanks again, super super tut!!!

  51. Thank you so much for generously posting this tutorial – it is very inspiring to see how to make something so beautiful and useful. I love bags! Where did you find the lovely wooden handles? I have only found plastic ones which don’t look half as nice as yours. Thanks again – I will be making one or two of these (or three or four…)

  52. Tania says:

    These are wonderful! I’ve been making a few and it has inspired me to venture out into new territory. Love it! I’ve made a few and posted the pictures on my blog here: http://www.picklesnpopcorn.com/2009/02/bags-bags-and-more-bags.html

  53. Mandy says:

    they are so beautiful…i am trying to sew a bag. would love to try it out when i have the time.ha

  54. Mary Anna says:

    I just finished my handbag and I’m smitten! I’m trying to plan tomorrow’s outfit so I can carry it to my MOPS meeting!!!!

  55. Where do you purchase your bag making supplies from? (Handles and clasps)

  56. Meg says:

    These bags are darlin’! Thank you so much for the excellent tutorial; I can’t wait to make one. Or twelve!

  57. Pam says:

    I love your site. I showed this to my daughter because it looks like a good project for someone just learning. It is so much fun looking at all of your projects and I was able to make a couple of them for presents already. Thanks!

  58. Victoria says:

    Absolutely LOVE each and every one of these bags!

  59. Kathleen G. says:

    Love this project!! So chic! Thank you for sharing all these fantastic projects to make using a fat quarter!

  60. Tammi says:

    These are so great! I can’t wait to try one!

  61. Sarah says:

    I just made one of these. Thanks for the great tutorial!! It was easy to follow and my bag is GORGEOUS! I don’t have any handles in my stash so I made some fabric straps and I can’t wait to make another!!

  62. Dawn-Marie says:

    These are so cute! I guess I know what my next project will be!! Thanks for sharing!!

  63. CodeCrafter says:

    Great tutorial! Thanks!

  64. Kay says:

    Those bags look really, really nice. And so many options for varying each and every bag =)

  65. Kandie Hicks says:

    Jennifer, I went out the same day you posted this tutorial and bought two gorgeous Moda fat quarters in red, the handles, the interfacing and the thread and snap, and I finished the purse last night. I had a pocket template from another pattern that I used in your purse, and I have to truly say it’s my new favorite purse, and I plan to make many more. Thank you so much for posting this tutorial. Now all I have to do is figure out how to post the photos!

  66. Sam Juggins says:

    What and excellent tute and so many variations!!! I will be making a few of these over the weekend. I have an excellent cat fq that I will now turn in to a bag for my friend! I will be popping back to see what other fq tutes you have this month. I love the slippers and the baby booties too!!!

  67. Lisa says:

    Hi Jennifer and SMS — This is the perfect project for a lovely FQ I have been holding on to for a year (yes, a year!)…thank you for providing the perfect project.

  68. Valerie says:

    What a great bag! I can’t wait to try it out.

  69. adrienne says:

    Thank you, Jennifer for the great tutorial! One of my favorite things about the SMS blog is the insightful and creative comments from other readers. All arounf happiness for this post!

    =]

  70. Rose in Arizona says:

    Inspiring tutorial. Thanks so much. You have us searching through our stashes.

  71. Heather A says:

    Wow – you make this look so easy! I’m definitely going to have to give this a try!

  72. Heather B says:

    You make it look so easy – I might actual give this a try.

  73. Stine says:

    I am absolutely in love with the Patchwork Clutch Purse – the colours, the design, the everything. A new project is on my lists now.

  74. Bridget says:

    wow this is fantastic! I’m already thinking about which of my fat quarters to try this with

  75. Sarah Lemmon says:

    Adorable! I’m going to make this this weekend!!

  76. sally schaffhausen says:

    So very kind of you to show and tell us your sewing secrets. Especially since you sell the purses. To me it was like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. You are a generous person,and I want to thank you for you willingness to share with the rest of us. SHINE ON!!!!!! Thank you Jenn. I live 45 miles from any form of pattern and fabric department,so the idea that it uses a small amount of fabric is terrific.

  77. Liz says:

    There are so many different looks from one bag tutorial and they all look fantastic! My favorite is the Japanese Fans Clutch Purse- it’s gorgeous.

  78. karen day says:

    those bags are amazing. where can i purchase online handles like that??? i live in a remote town, so have to purchase online. thanks :D

  79. michele m says:

    ohhhhh i just love the black and white one

  80. DianeH says:

    Wow! I order 100 FQ’s last year and boy do I need ideas. This site is fantastic.
    Thank you!

  81. naomig says:

    Oh me, Oh my. That is adorable! I love it! I have some fabric I was eyeing this morning, and thinking I should make a handbag out of… and then I read this post… :-) So cute! love it!

  82. Kelli says:

    I was wanting to make a fat quarter handbag for a birthday party this weekend..thanks for the inspiration and ideas!

  83. Lorrie says:

    Oh, what a fantastic tutorial. Such an easy and pretty bag – easy to make in lots of different prints and colours for spring. Thank you so much.

    Lorrie

  84. HollyP` says:

    Love this! I just bought an Asian-inspired fat quarter I’m dying to use, and one of these patterns will be perfect for it. Thanks for posting it.

  85. I didn’t know making handbags are so easy. It also looks fun doing them.

  86. Danielle says:

    These are so cute! I’m adding them to my list! (and emailing the link to my friend; I know she’ll love them)

  87. sarah f says:

    Oh my god! These are absolutely stunning! When I saw it I was thinking I could never make one with an equally awesome print! But then i scrolled down and saw that the beauty translates to all kinds of prints and styles. Thank you so much for this!

  88. Jennifer says:

    I love these thanks for the tips!!
    and thanks for the tutorial..

  89. Jean says:

    All of them are so beautiful! That Kokka fabric is one of my favorites!

  90. Becky says:

    Thank you so much! I have a fat quarter that would be perfect for that pleated purse. Can’t wait!

  91. erica says:

    wow! amazing tutorial. i think even i can make this one.
    thanks so much! The one with the pleats, just make me want to stop everything and sew.
    Just the inspiration I needed today.

  92. shelley says:

    adorable bag and beautiful material!

  93. Trina – I’m usually a big fan of pre-washing, but in this case, I guess it wouldn’t really be necessary. Pre-washing is usually used so that when you wash your finished product later, it won’t shrink or bleed. In this case, since you have handles attached, the finished purse isn’t machine washable. (Just spot clean). So you would never have to worry about shrinking, so I guess you could skip the pre-wash step!

  94. Andrea says:

    How cute! What a great excuse to buy lots of fat quarters (for gifts, of course)!

  95. Alisa says:

    OK, this is a very good tutorial. Thanks so much for doing it for us.

  96. Sarah Bowers says:

    Thank you for the easy to follow tutorial. Great project!

  97. Kristin says:

    Wow! That’s a cute purse. I’m going to try.

  98. trina says:

    Thanks for this great tutorial – my skills are improving and I think I could do this! I have one question about fabric – as I have been learning, my mom (my only sewing connection) continually drills in me to wash ALL fabrics before beginning a project but in this case would it be necessary/beneficial? Probably a total newbie question but would help to know : )

  99. Julie says:

    I think I’ve been inspired to make myself a new bag! Thanks for the tutorial.

  100. Paula in NH says:

    Love it! Since I’ve started working at Jo-Ann Fabrics there are so many fabrics I want to try. This would be a great project for trying new fabrics. Thanks!

  101. amy says:

    Thanks for the great tutorial! Love the fabric!

  102. Elaine says:

    Wow! I have a few fat quarters that will work great for a bag like a couple of these. Thanks for posting!

  103. Ramona says:

    I love these handbags. I have some old napkins that I have been wanting to make into a handbag and now I know how!! Thanks so much for the tutorial.

  104. Grace says:

    It’s amazing how such a simple idea can be so versatile! Definitely time to buy some fat quarters..

  105. Erica-Jane says:

    Oh my! Iove that tree fabric so much. What an awesome tutorial. Thanks so much for sharing.

  106. Shellyfish says:

    This is such a great tute! I can get down with this kind of project!

  107. Heather says:

    Those are beautiful… now I have another project to add to my ever growing list :) Thanks for the tutorial!

  108. RobinE says:

    Thank you so much for the wonderful tips and eye candy! I’m feeling so inspired right now– I need to go buy handles! :)

  109. Marcia says:

    Wow! They are all so wonderful…I’ll never look at a fat quarter quite the same.
    Thanks for so generously sharing with us.

  110. Jennifer says:

    I recently found your website, and am sooooooo addicted! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Such cute and fun stuff!

  111. Dot says:

    What a wonderful gift to give readers—-this tutorial is wonderful—-the pattern beutiful

  112. Liz says:

    how fun! i love the pleated one!

  113. Brooke says:

    Thanks so much for the great tutorial and the beautiful pictures of your great bags!!

  114. Shanna says:

    Wow. Lots of great ideas!

  115. Regina says:

    These are GORGEOUS!!!

  116. Kate says:

    Wow, the project is great, but seeing all the different options/ideas is fantastic! Thanks for the tutorial.

  117. juliecache says:

    Great fabrics! I like the small projects!

  118. Sarah D says:

    I think I have a project for this weekend!

    Love that first red fabric, btw.

  119. Stacy says:

    I love the variations! Thanks for this tutorial!

  120. Tabitha says:

    My daughter’s are already begging me to make them each one of these. Thanks so much for the tutorial!

  121. B says:

    I love this purse. For sure I am going out to buy some fat quarters now.
    I have my own giveaway going on, for a purse.
    Comes check it out.

    http://simply-b.blogspot.com/2009/02/great-funk-giveaway.html

  122. Sara says:

    Oh my, these bags are amazing! I never ventured into handbag making and I was just researching ideas for a friends wedding. Thanks for the great resource!

  123. Lisa says:

    That red fabric is so beautiful. If I can track some down, I’m going to make this purse.

  124. Kris B. says:

    Those are ADORABLE! I have a ton of fat quarters acquired during my I’m-going-to-learn-to-quilt phase. Now I have a plan for them! Thanks for posting this; I’ll be printing it out and tucking it away in my fat quarter boxes.

  125. Betsy says:

    I LOVE this bag! I’m wondering if there is a way to make it so that the bag can be detached from the handles and another can be attached – same handles, different bag. Your creativity is amazing!

  126. Becka says:

    So simple and so many great variations. These are all beautiful!

  127. Libby says:

    Great tutorial. I love your work. You really have an eye for what looks good.

  128. Mary says:

    What a simple looking project. Add that to the list.

  129. too cool!

  130. elodee says:

    I absolutely LOVE this bag! Once I finally take that sewing class..I’m shoo in for this bag! lol Great project!

  131. Baba says:

    This was a great tutorial and examples of different bag shapes. Thank you so much.!

  132. Kathy says:

    Can it be that easy?! We shall see . . .:)

  133. Helena says:

    love it. Can’t wait to make one.

  134. Kathy Lorden says:

    Hmm . . . did I miss the installation of the magnetic snap? I’m not great at that, so I was keen on finding out any tips you might have. Specifically, how do you cut the correct slit for the little tabs? My mag. snap pulled out after a bit . . . the magnet seemed sooo strong for the bag.

    That said, love the tutorial and hope to be as brave as you are at modifying the bag again and again. So cool!

  135. Great tutorial! You make it look so easy and the examples are gorgeous. I’m kicking myself for not picking up the bag handles I saw in the shop yesterday! Can’t wait to try this when I get home.

  136. Kate M. says:

    The patchwork clutch makes such a statement!

  137. Leah says:

    What a fantastic tutorial! This FQ month is piling up a long list of things for me to sew:-) Thanks so much for sharing.

  138. Mary Anna says:

    I’ve wanted to sew a handbag for a while but couldn’t find one that was a)easy enough, b)quick enough and c)cute enough. This is all three in one fantastic bag! And, I love the flat bottom instructions – something I am looking for in my bag!

  139. Esther says:

    This is awesome! Thanks so much for posting the tutorial. I have some fabric that would be perfect for this project.

  140. Amber says:

    This is a fantastic tutorial! Those purses are absolutely gorgeous!

  141. Serena says:

    Very cute.

  142. alison says:

    Really good tut! Nice pics and good explainations! Thank you.

  143. alisha says:

    I love every one of them! I think I’m going to have to pick up some wooden purse handles the next time I’m in the fabric shop.

  144. all8 says:

    WOW! So pretty and fun. I recently bought some fat quarters that don’t “go” with anything I already have but they “spoke” to me. DD says that she needs a new purse, I have new FQ’s and then you post this great tutorial. Pure providence. Thank you, Jennifer!

  145. Clara says:

    Wow so many ideas. Thanks.

  146. Southern Gal says:

    Can’t wait to try my hand at this.

  147. Lesley Stenning says:

    great tips, thanks, I’ve been wanting to try a pleated handbag…

  148. Mary Ann M says:

    I am definetly inspired to try one of these purses.

  149. kristine hanson says:

    thanks for sharing!!

  150. Jen says:

    I love this tutorial – all the different variations on the original design are wonderful!

    I also have to say I think it’s wonderful to see someone who is not afraid to disclose how she makes something in her shop. It’s refreshing – so, thank you Jennifer!

  151. BCQuilter says:

    What a wonderful tutorial. I really like how you showed several different styles, but all from the basic pattern.

    -Alice

  152. Shannon says:

    Thank you so much for sharing!! I love them all!

  153. Tracy says:

    What a beautiful assortment of bags. Thank you for the clear instructions!

  154. jackie says:

    i love them all! and the fabric…swoon

  155. donette says:

    I will definately be making one of these!

  156. Esther says:

    Thanks for the reply Jennifer – sensible and practical suggestion! I like a bag that holds it’s shape too, so that layer of interfacing is a wise extra step… (I think I was just hoping to be lazy and still get the good results!)

  157. Anna Luna says:

    Wouldn’t it be cool to add a snap or perhaps velcro or something to the handle loops on the bag body so that you could use the same handles with various bags? Do you think that would work? Perhaps if we don’t carry bricks around in our bag! Thanks for the great tutorial.

    Anna

  158. Cherie says:

    It looks so easy I might even try it! Wonderful! Thank you so much!

  159. Heather says:

    Jennifer,
    So many variations on this theme–thank you for sharing with us. Do you think it would work with some bamboo circles? I might have to try and share how it comes out.

  160. wendy says:

    Absolutely gorgeous! Thanks for sharing :)

  161. Emily S says:

    Those are so gorgeous! Going on my to-do list right now!

  162. Barb says:

    Great tutorial…I’m looking forward to making one for myself. Just have to get some handles…

  163. Melanie says:

    Great tutorial, thank you! I love the night and day clutch, great fabric.

  164. linda says:

    Thanks so much for your tutorial. You are very talented.

  165. julia says:

    fantastic!!! All I need is a set of cute handles…ya-hoo.

  166. Fabulous tutorial!

  167. Leigh says:

    These bags are great!!! This will be my new favorite use for all the fat quarters that follow me home from the fabric store! :D

  168. Margie says:

    Oh Thanks so much. Your bags are beautiful. You can never have enough bags & they make wonderful gifts!

  169. nikko says:

    Why haven’t I ever thought of doing this? Brilliant!

  170. Jodie Hickman says:

    Super tutorials and what beautiful bags you have made.
    It really inspires me! Thanks

  171. Anya T. says:

    Thanks so much. Love all the bags.

  172. jessi says:

    Thank you, thank you thank you!

  173. Jennifer says:

    I love this bag! I can’t wait to make one!

  174. Shelley C says:

    Now these are way too cute! Need to get a project out of the way (after taxes :( and I can start on one of these! THank you so much for sharing!

  175. jessica m says:

    this looks almost DECEPTIVELY easy. I’m excited since I just did some stash shopping yesterday and I have four new fat quarters that I”m in love with. Now…I just need the handles.

  176. Mary says:

    I’m normally not into making bags, but I think I have been inspired to try now!

  177. Kay says:

    Great instructions with photos!

  178. Jeannine says:

    Fantastic!

  179. Swati says:

    What a great tutorial! I love your bags and am happy that now I can make them too!

  180. Alison N says:

    These bags are so cute! I could totally make one!

  181. lesley says:

    What a simple and sharp looking tutorial! I can’t wait to try some of these hints out! Thanks!☺

  182. Thanks so much for all your sweet comments, everyone!

    Esther – to answer your question about interfacing – I usually still use interfacing even if I use home decorator fabric since I like a pretty stiff bag. But a good test would be to hold up the fabric and your lining together and wave it around a little bit. If it stays pretty still, you are probably fine. If it moves around a lot, I’d add interfacing. I hope that helps!

  183. Toby says:

    Love them! and thanks for all the ways to make them a little different!

  184. Chauntel says:

    Love the bags & your fabrics.
    Thanks for the simple tutorial, you can never have enough fat quarters or bags!

  185. v and co says:

    oh I LOVE THAT TUTORIAL thank you!!!

  186. Carissa says:

    I will definitely be making a few of these for me and my friends! Great gifts, who wouldn’t want a fun spring bag?!

  187. Anne says:

    Wow, these are so cute! I love the green+pink, and the japanese fans … heck, I love them all!

  188. Marilyn says:

    Oh so many variations and the fabric changes the look so much!

  189. katie says:

    Beautiful! And, great directions. Nice job.

  190. Irit says:

    Excellent tips! Thank you Jennifer!
    The bags are beautiful, and there’s no waste of fabric, which means no tiny remnants that threaten to take over the house… ;)
    I’m finally learning what a fat quarter is good for, and what’s the difference between that and a 1/4 yard. Thanks!

  191. em says:

    These look so fun and would make really great, simple gifts. I think I might become addicted. Thanks for sharing!

  192. Patricia says:

    So Cute! Thank you! I love them all!

  193. Andrea says:

    ooo NICE!

  194. Michelle says:

    Very cute! I will be trying this!

  195. Sarah says:

    I love these bags, what a great gift idea for all my girlfriends. Can’t wait to start making them. Thank you for the tutorial.

  196. alison says:

    Wow, these are totally awesome! What a fabulous and versatile project. I gotta go look at my fat quarter stash NOW!

  197. April says:

    I think this has to be my favorite of the FQ projects so far! These handbags are great and I will defiitely be trying one once I get some FQ in my stash!

  198. Shauntel Hart says:

    This red, white and black back is very sharp looking! I love Tutorials!

  199. Megan says:

    What a great tutorial!

  200. Tera says:

    Thank you so much for the tutorial! There are so many wonderful options to personalize a bag. I’ll have to try one soon :)

    Tera

  201. Joy S says:

    I have some family birthdays coming up including one for my sis-in-law who is
    a self-described bag lady. This will be the perfect gift idea for her!

  202. jodie says:

    Very nice! Thank you!

  203. Kendall says:

    This is such a great tutorial! I love all of these ideas for fat quarters–I had always thought they were just for quilters and passed them by. I will definitely be making more than one bag like this. Thanks!

  204. Sherri S. says:

    Thank you SO much–these are beyond adorable. If I weren’t supposed to be in bed (ahem) recovering from surgery, I’d drag out my machine right now and get started. SO stinkin’ cute! Love love love them.

  205. Ellen Lamb says:

    Hooray!!! I love bags! these are SO CUTE :)

  206. Carolyn says:

    The bags are super cute, but my primary concern would be the strength of the straps used to attach the handles. I have never been enthusiastic about making my own handbags because it seems that anything less than industrial-strength materials is doomed to failure. While the handles are certainly fashionable, is there a way to construct heavy-duty straps to make the bag last a bit longer?

  207. amanda says:

    Wowza. This is honestly one of the most amazing tutorials I’ve ever seen. Thank you!

  208. Whistlepea says:

    This is totally adorable!

  209. Ashley Ann says:

    Cute!!

  210. Danielle says:

    Gorgeous! Love them all!

  211. Shannon says:

    Ohhhhhhhhhh, I love them! I’ll make one of each please, a girl can never have too many purses or shoes.

  212. Pam says:

    I love these bags and have several fat quarters I can’t wait to try!

  213. Skulleigh says:

    Hmm… that looks super-easy. I might have to whip up some of these!

  214. Esther says:

    Perfect! Thank you so much – clear instructions, and some top tips about fitting those wooden handles in – would you recommend I still put the interfacing in if I used furniture (decorator’s?) fabric – or will it be sturdy enough on it’s own?

  215. Ellen B says:

    Your bags are lovely…thanks for sharing!

  216. Alissa says:

    Such a cute cute bag and wonderful tutorial! Can’t wait to make one or two of these!

  217. Bethany says:

    Wow, so many gorgeous bags, and so many more options to consider!! What an inspirational tutorial featuring inspirational fabrics as well!! This definitely gives me some ideas!

  218. Sarah Lee says:

    Love this!! Can’t wait to try it!!!

  219. Diane says:

    This is fantastic! I cannot wait to try several of these variations…off to the fabric store asap:)

  220. Katie says:

    all those bags are so sweet.

  221. Tarmy says:

    Great Tutorial. looks like I”m going to be doing some sewing!

  222. Stephanie says:

    Thank you Jennifer! I love your bags!

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