Elizabeth’s Fabric Focus ~ April Bags

on April 27 | in Sewing Tutorials + Patterns | by | with 135 Comments

Elizabeth from Oh, Fransson! joins us each month to share a new project featuring one of our current fabric collections. Don’t miss the PDF patterns in Elizabeth’s Etsy shop and her series of fun tutorials on Oh, Fransson!Today’s beautiful April Bag Projects are available as a free PDF download.

From Elizabeth: This month we’re focusing on two collections from Jennifer Paganelli, Flower Power and Pretty Please. I’m always excited to see a new collection from Jennifer and these two do not disappoint! They both include plenty of lovely florals, scrolls and other fabulous patterns in wonderful, bright colors.


I thought these prints would look great on some simple Spring bags and opted to go with a quick and easy style with no pattern, no metal hardware and very little interfacing. In the past, I’ve used this construction method to make bamboo-handled bags, but thought it would be fun to try it with a fabric handle instead. The fabric handles have sort of a drawstring effect, which makes for some pretty gathering at the top of the bags.


The shoulder bag style is approximately 13″ high by 12″ wide. This bag is made from three Flower Power prints. The outside is the Loopy Vintage Floral in brown and the lining is Kate’s Wish in coral. The handles are made from the brown Zebra print.


The handbag is approximately 10″ high and 11′ wide. This bag is made from Flower Power’s Elizabeth Rose in Ivory.


The lining (Marie in butter) and the handles (Jackie in fuschia) are from Pretty Please.


If you make anything with Flower Power, Pretty Please or this free PDF tutorial, we would love to see the results in the SMS photo pool!

Join us for Spring Sewing. Comment this week to win prizes from Fiskars/Gingher. This week you can win Comfort Grip Scissors and a 12-in-1 Sewing Multi-Tool. We’re also giving away four $20 gift certificates to Sew,Mama,Sew!
Pin It

Related Posts

135 Responses to Elizabeth’s Fabric Focus ~ April Bags

  1. wendy says:

    Thank you. I made your bags for my grandaughters for holloween.
    I added fring and pumkin material and they were so cute.

  2. zebra bags says:

    I really like these bags! they are not only cute but also come in handy. The fabric design is simply lovely & the size is just nice. thank you for sharing this…

  3. Suzy says:

    I’ve just tried making the bigger bag (brown w/flowers), but when I turned the bag, it didn’t line up properly. I’m wondering if the measurement for where to put the dots (6.5″ from the top and .5″ in) applies to the larger bag as well, or if that’s just for the smaller bag?? I’m making this as a gift and need help a.s.a.p.! Thank you – it’s a really cute bag, and I can’t wait to finish it! Suzy, June 16, 2010

  4. Ivana says:

    I love this bag! I made it yesterday. It was very fast and easy to make and it was just what I was looking for. I made the small handbag but used the larger handles. It’s perfect for putting my wallet, keys and cigarettes in when I’m going out the door.

  5. Sabine says:

    Gosh – this is exactely what I am looking for! I have done know bags with bamboo handle, but I don’t like the handle so much and I have been thinking: there must be a solution with fabric straps and now I have found it!
    Thank you for sharing this and I will definetely sew this bag again 🙂

  6. Shannon says:

    Love this bag! Love it, love it, love it!

  7. Ali says:

    Beautiful fabrics, great pattern. I made a similar bag but with rope handles. The rope was the kind used in sash windows, which I bought from the hardware store. The tricky part was getting the rope ends to stay together. Your fabric handles are much easier!

  8. andrea says:

    I love that Loopy Vintage Floral fabric- thanks for the tutorial it looks like a fun bag to make:)

  9. Jennifer O. says:

    It says two 13″ pieces for the exterior and lining of the handbag – is that 13 inches square?

  10. crystalsews says:

    I made one for a lunch sack and I love it. Thank you so much for the pattern!!

  11. rebe says:

    Cool idea. I just got some fabric that I want to make into a bag. I think I may have just found my pattern!!!

  12. Kris says:

    I really like how the handles are on this bag! I will have to make this out of some of the fabric I’ve been hoarding!!!

  13. susaninfrance/texas says:

    this is so modern and clean. very cute.

  14. alisha says:

    I can’t get enough of the handbags! And I love the fabric selections.

  15. Cheryl says:

    My favorite is the one with the three fabric prints…..the ruffled look is just so pretty and feminine and girly…….so sweet. I want one right now……thank you for the tutorial. Your site is just the greatest.

  16. Betty Allis says:

    I just wanted to say thank you to Elizabeth for sending me the pdf file for the very cute purses. I really appreciate it. I will be making these soon. Thanks so much again.

  17. Rebecca says:

    What a great summer bag – thanks for the free pattern!!

  18. michele m says:

    i think I may try to make one of these. very pretty. thanks for the inspiration.

  19. Patt Marcial says:

    This is the cutest bag I seen in a while. Thanks so much for the pattern. Am going to love making a few of these.
    Hugs Patt

  20. Erin says:

    I think I’m going to make these as gifts for the girls in my wedding. Thanks!

  21. Kelli says:

    Elizabeth is awesome, isn’t she? Thanks for the great ideas and beautiful fabrics…I had drool all over my keyboard. Flower Power and Pretty Please are already on my long wishlist, but after this post, they moved up the list a little!

  22. katie says:

    OK, I’m going to try some of these — quick and easy spring gifties! Thanks for the pattern.

  23. Rochelle says:

    This is the perfect purse pattern for such beautiful fabric! Makes me think of summer.

  24. Amanda says:

    I love Jennifer’s fabrics, too. This bag is adorable. Thanks for the free pattern.

  25. LittleA says:

    Beautiful bags! I need a sewing tote to take my embroidery to go.

  26. Katie says:

    So sweet! I can’t wait for the semester and final papers to be over so I can get sewing!

  27. Emily Kidd says:

    I had been wondering how to make a bag with a gathered top….and guess what I come to check out whats new on sew, mama, sew and its a gathered bag! Im very excited to try out this pattern!

  28. Jessica T says:

    What a smart looking bag! I love the brown with the pink lining, that’s a great combo.

  29. Rachelle says:

    This bag is so great, the key is to find time to make it!

  30. Carla says:

    Very pretty. Shame the brown zebra print is out of stock.

  31. sally schaffhausen says:

    The fabrics are beautiful and the free pattern devine!!! Love this site above all others. So much good information from such wonderful people who are all willing to share so the rest of can fell good about our selves. Thank you all.

  32. Shellei says:

    SO cute and looks like it comes together so quickly! I love somewhat instant gratification!

  33. Java Jane says:

    Patting myself on the back for order some darling fabrics from Sew Mama Sew just this morning. Keep the inspiration coming folks!


  34. Sylvie says:

    I love these bags, and the flowery fabric makes them look so romantic.

  35. karen l says:

    thanks for the tute! Digging in my stash ASAP …. Looking forward to more summer tops!

  36. Sharron says:

    Let’s see….how many bags can a girl use? Hmm. I’d like to find out!

  37. Kirsten says:

    This pattern is great for some upcoming May birthdays. Thanks for yet another idea!

  38. Shannon says:

    These are sooo pretty!! Thank you so much for sharing! I really need to make one for me and maybe good gifts for sis & mom for Mother’s day! Thank for you always sharing great ideas!

  39. Sarah J says:

    Great PDF – thank you, I will certainly be trying this project

  40. very cute little bags 🙂 i am inspired to sew a new bag for myself!

  41. Shannon says:

    So cute! I love your tutorials and your quilts and your blog!

  42. Michelle says:

    LOVING the fabrics in these. The lining on both of them is divine.

  43. Brooke says:

    Really cute bag pattern. I have to add this one to my list.

  44. Emily says:

    Interesting construction. I think I would need to sew up the sides a bit more, though, or I would lose things out the sides of the bag.

  45. Pat says:

    Great bags, simple construction, and pretty fabrics, does it get any better than that?

  46. Bethany says:

    Ooo…pretty fabrics. And an interesting bag pattern…thank you!

  47. Becca B says:

    The best part about spring sewing month has been the tutorials!! Love them! Such a cute bag!

  48. Barbie says:

    I love them both. I can’t wait to make one. Thanks for the tutorial.

  49. Terriaw says:

    Great project! I have some fabrics from this collection, which I can definitely see using for a couple of these bags.

  50. Linda says:

    Really cute bag!

  51. ellen says:

    Cute bags….love the brown fabric.

  52. Trina says:

    Veronica- the fabric you like is a Paula Prass for Michael Miller fabric. I haven’t seen it online (haven’t looked much either) but my quilt store has it.


  53. Kristin Q says:

    Adorable pattern, thank you for sharing your time!

  54. Christen says:

    I’ve been thinking that it’s time to get out a Spring bag- love these. Much better than what I see in the closet right now!

  55. katie says:

    Great sized bag- cute fabrics. Thanks!

  56. tea and cake says:

    I am a sucker for bag projects! And, this tutorial is really clear, thank you. I also love fabrics with either birds or butterflies on them – these are eye candy to me!

  57. heleen says:

    Lovely bags!!

  58. BethieB says:

    I need a new bag for spring, and I have so many fabrics I can see being used for one of each of these. Can’t wait to get started, but now it’s a toss up between a bag and the awesome ruffled top in the last tutorial…maybe I can be matchy matchy and do both! Thanks again!

  59. Raeann says:

    I am going to try this bag! I need a new one and this looks quick and easy! Thanks!

  60. JenR says:

    Love these! I can see many of these in my future. Maybe even adjusting the sizes to make a littler matchy-matchy one for my munchkin! Thank you Elizabeth!

  61. Love this bag. I like the fact that I don’t have to use purchased handles that I may or may not have on hand.

  62. craftytammie says:

    These look fun and easy too! Thanks!

  63. Liz says:

    Thanks so much for sharing your tutorial. I will definitely give the handbag a try. The fabric choices Elizabeth used are beautiful!

  64. helena says:

    Great little bag. Guess since schools are cancelled here, this will be on our list to keep my daughter busy. Thanks all the projects are great. keep them coming ;)!

  65. Katie says:

    Love the purses and the fabric choices – so pretty!!

  66. Haley Crumpler says:

    Love the bags! Wish there was a bigger one too!

  67. Sara R. says:

    I think this will be my next project…with that chicken fabric I’ve been saving…

  68. Christy says:

    I can’t wait to try it! Thanks

  69. Elizabeth says:

    I love the idea of using stiffer fabric loops instead of bamboo circles!
    Your purse full of fabric and notions makes me want to go shopping…

  70. Debbie says:

    The bags are lovely!

  71. Christine says:

    Beautiful bags! I like how the straps are wide but not very thick. Thanks for the tut!

  72. LisaC says:

    I can’t wait to make these! 🙂

  73. Julia in MI says:

    These bags are great! My favorite part is the drawstring handles. Love that!

  74. Sherri says:

    Thanks for the patterns. They are great!

  75. Beth says:

    Thanks for inspiring me : )

  76. Lisa says:

    Another bag pattern to drool over… I am ready to make a bag but deciding which one just got tougher. Drat, maybe I need to make two. But then, I will need to select fabrics for two…

  77. Danielle says:

    Love the size of the bag! Beautiful!

  78. Liz says:

    i like this strap idea!

  79. Martha says:

    Gorgeous! I think I will use this pattern for a bag for my daughter.

  80. Betty Allis says:

    I love the purse but unfortunately, When I try to download the pdf. It says the file is damaged and will not download.

  81. Mary on Lake Pulaski says:

    Very cute fabric for the bags and the tutorial looks pretty easy. It shouldn’t take me long to make a few of these.

  82. Pam says:

    I love these bags! I will definitely being making this bag. Thanks for the tutorial.

  83. Maple says:

    I’m lovin’ it! These look so simple and so cute!

  84. Michelle says:

    Ack! So easy. I love it. Thanks again, Elizabeth!

  85. CIndy says:

    I love keeping it simple–thanks for being so generous with the tutorials–I get a little kick everyday checking out what’s new on sew mama, I really look forward to it–more than checking my e-mail–really!–I love the fabrics too

  86. MaryAnn says:

    This is my excuse to make a new bag. I love the fabrics.

  87. MegVS says:

    I love it! Beautiful pattern!

  88. Ellen says:

    Thanks for the tutorial. Love the ivory bag.

  89. mishalee says:

    Thank you! I am a total bag lady…so excited to add these to my to do list!

  90. Trinity says:

    So pretty! Thanks for sharing yet another amazing tutorial, Elizabeth!!!

  91. Laura says:

    Love the flowers, this site has inspired me to sew again!

  92. christine says:

    oh, i just love the bag! thank you!

  93. Debra says:

    The bags are great. The fabrics are fantastic. Vintage with a twist.

  94. Samantha says:

    I’ve made bamboo handle bags like that too. I’ll have to give the new handles now. Thanks!

  95. Steph W says:

    Oh, wow!!

  96. Lorene says:

    Cute bags!

  97. KT says:

    I have been eyeing some of that fabric. Now I really want it! Great bags!!!!

  98. Samantha says:

    I love this bag design- can’t wait to make it! I’ve been saving some beautiful vintage sheets for just such a project.

  99. Margie says:

    Such a gorgeous bag! I can’t wait to make a few & your fabric choices are TDF!!

  100. Tabitha says:

    I love the bag. Thanks for the pattern!

  101. Trina says:

    Super cute!

  102. Looks simple enough – I just might have to try it.

  103. Tina Kay says:

    I love it!!! I am in need of a new handbag. I have been looking for a bag to make. Nothing was speaking to me……until I saw this. Thank you!!

    Tina Kay

  104. Ananda says:

    Those bags are georgous! I love the fabric combonations.

  105. Mirza says:

    Cute!!! Want to make some of these!

  106. Kari says:

    The large one looks like it would be great to take to a farmer’s market. I like the construction. I’ve never thought of making a bag that way before.

  107. brittany says:

    love the shoulder bag!

  108. Mrs. JP says:

    These are so cute…I especially like the brown one w/ pink lining

  109. amy says:

    Such cute bags!

  110. Rachel Bates says:

    Its much classier with the higher quality of the handles. I would like to figure out how it could be reversable.

  111. Tracy says:

    I’ve been looking for something to make my niece for her birthday, and this is perfect. Love it!

  112. Liz B says:

    Absolutely gorgeous, and a great use of materials; sometimes you just want to knock out a cute bag without dealing with snaps, handles, etc. Thanks for the pattern Elizabeth!

  113. Annie says:

    These bags are beautiful! I cannot wait to try them today, thanyou.

  114. Shai says:

    Thank you so much for the pattern! I know a few friends that would enjoy a bag like this. It’s too cute not to have a few myself.

  115. Michelle Price says:

    Gorgeous fabrics! I love the bright colors in many of the spring projects!

  116. Kaye Prince says:

    Awesome pattern Elizabeth; thanks for sharing! I also read your blog, and really loved the over-dyed fabric tutorial that you shared. Keep up the great work!

  117. Lynne in NC says:

    Wow! the fabric choices are gorgeous and I am so thankful for the tute! I’ve been ‘itching’ to have a new bag. Thanks!

  118. Deborah says:

    These beautiful spring fabrics give me a feeling of lightheartedness – I especially love the prints and colors of the Flower Power Elizabeth Rose bag. Thanks so much for the patterns AND the chance to win some lovely prizes!

  119. Amy Sp says:

    Great looking bags. The Elizabeth Rose fabric is beautiful!

  120. Barbara Sindlinger says:

    What a wonderful simple yet beautiful purse pattern. Thanks for sharing. I love your blog too.

  121. Joy S says:

    One of these will be a perfect Mother’s Day gift for my mother-in-law!

    Good timing and great directions!

  122. Grand dad says:

    Clever and useful, thanks also for the PDF!

  123. Katie says:

    Neat bag.

  124. Joy says:

    Cute bags!

  125. Anna says:

    Fabulous!!!!!! This will keep me busy, thanks for sharing 🙂

  126. Dani says:

    Very cool! I love how Elizabeth uses a plate for your cutting guide. I keep several sizes of plates available in my sewing room for such things. I even keep a pizza pan handy! I’ll have to give her pattern a try.

  127. Marlana says:

    Cute bags!

  128. Veronica says:

    Can you tell me who makes the blue-and-white fabric with the black dots in it that is in the bag in the final photo? I love that!

  129. Michele says:

    Wonderul! Thanks for the pdf.

  130. Barb says:


  131. Leslie Newton says:

    I love these purses. I could make a new purse everyday, if I had the time. I will truly use this pattern.

  132. Shawna says:

    I am so glad you put these up! I need to make a gift for someone for tomorrow and I couldn’t decide what to do. This is perfect:)

  133. Marilyn says:

    Pretty spring purses! Fabric store here I come…

  134. Christina says:

    Oooh, that’s so pretty!

  135. Natalie says:

    Very inspiring. I say “inspiring” in almost every comment, but it’s true. Is there another word for inspiring? How about a phrase? I got it: The house will never get clean now! Which means: I was inspired at Sew, Mama Sew!

« »

Subscribe to the sewmamasew.com newsletter

Sewing inspiration, projects, events and offers delivered conveniently to your email.


Get the latest sewmamasew.com news via