Friday, September 2, 2011

The Irene Purse

Last week I noticed that my Bonsai Bag was looking a bit sad and dirty and just plain faded. (I suppose using it for a year straight will do that.) I figured I wouldn't have time to sew a new one though with school starting back up again and two more weddings to go to. Then! Hurricane Irene came along. Luckily our power did not go out, nor our roof blow off, and the first day of school was canceled due to the storm. So, stuck at home with no where to go, I started looking for tutorials and patterns for another purse. Low and behold I found a pattern in my drawer that I borrowed from a friend. Simplicity Pattern 2396 and sewed a new purse in the time it took Hurricane Irene to dump 9 inches of rain on us. I thought I should name the purse after her. Here it is, the Irene Purse:

The corduroy was left over from the Bonsai Bag, inside is lined with a plain blue sheet that was left over from the Peacock Quilt, and the polka dots are from Denyse Schmidt's line of fabric at Joann's; which I bought with no plan in mind just because "I had to have it!"

Don't blow away purse! I used the pattern for the pieces and then pretty much disregarded the rest of it and added details that I like to make it more personalized.

Here is the inside. The pattern says to just put a pocket but I made a zippered one to hold my phone and flash drive, which would go missing for days, or be scratched irrevocably if left to fend for themselves with the other inhabitants of my purse.  On another note the pattern says to make the inside just like the outside of the purse, meaning you would have to cut 4 pieces of fabric for the lining and also pin and gather it. I ignored this and just traced the outside section once it was sewn together onto the lining fabric and cut it that way. Much easier in my opinion. 

The pattern also said to add a magnetic snap to close the purse but I didn't have any at home and I couldn't very well drive 30 minutes to Joann's in the middle of a hurricane so I added this flop over thing. I think it looks cute and keeps the bag closed. 


Piping is the best.

The pattern also said to sew the straps into the purse but I added these metal loops because I think it makes it look fancier. I just wish I had made the purse straps a bit thicker, they aren't very sturdy with only one layer of interfacing.

I had this whole snazzy idea for a photo shoot but Charlie got annoyed when I kept asking him to take more pictures, he just wanted to identify trees in the yard, figures. This is the best one.

Not exactly what I was going for. But you get the idea. 

I'm going to enter it in the Purse Week Contest.



  1. yay i'm happy you used the pattern! I like your modifications! I'm really liking piping too now! Great Job Lauren!

  2. I tried to comment on this last night from my ipod, but it wouldn't work. and I was too lazy to get out of bed and come to the computer. but I wanted to say that the purse is really cute!

  3. I clicked over from the Purse Week flickr group... this purse is so cute!! I am feeling a need for a corduroy purse now. =)

  4. I love your blog, and your adventure photographs are incredible. You are quite the photographer!
    When I saw the photos of the blueberries you picked in Maine, I thought I should send you a link for a recipe for blueberry pie that I fell in love with a couple of years ago. When blueberries are on sale, I always make a couple of these pies! The link is

    Brother CS600i


Thanks for stopping by, I love reading what you have to say :)

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