Earlier this year I stumbled across a great crafting web-site entitled www.craftster.org
The site offers help and tutorials for just about everything from soap-making to sewing. Well, being the novice sewer I am, I decided to give one of the tutorials a try. In fact, it was this one...
I didn't completely love the straps on the placemat purse (or the placemat the person used), so I decided to alter the idea to fit me. I fell in love with some fabulous and vibrant placemats at Target, and I actually purchased two thinking I would use them for something (albeit I did not know what). So, when I saw this tutorial...I knew I was set.
Here is a photo of the one I made for myself. I had it monogrammed after I made it.
I'm going to give some simple directions below on how to create the purse. Unfortunately, I did not take any pictures as I created this beauty. However, I am an extremely novice sewer. So, if I can do it...so can you.
1. Choose your placemat. Pier One and Target have some fabulous selections!
2. Fold the placemat in half inside out (width or length wise depending on what look you're wanting).
3. Pin the placemat on both sides. You should be looking at the wrong side of your fabric.
4. Stitch a straight stitch up each side of the purse. Make sure to go forward and backwards at the beginning and end to secure the thread. For extra coverage, you may want to do this twice.
5. This is the only tricky part. Fold one side to a point. Look at step 4 on this tutorial. There is a picture that helps explain.
6. Sew across the point creating a triangle. Complete steps 5 and 6 on the opposite side. This is going to create some width for your purse. Remember to look at steps 4 and 5 on the above linked tutorial.
7. Fray check all of your seams to ensure they stay together.
8. Trim away any additional thread.
9. Turn bag inside out, so the correct fabric is showing now.
10. Decide how you want to close your purse. Here are several options: (1) hand sew a magnetic closure, (2) hand sew a button on the outside of one side and a ribbon loop on the other, (3) add handles and don't have a way to truly secure the top, or (4) add a ribbon to both sides and tie.
I used option 1. It was the easiest for me at the time. So, the button on the front of mine is strictly ornamental.
Here are the two I made...one for me and one for a friend. If you have any questions, I'll be glad to attempt to answer them. However, I'll remind you that I am certainly a rookie sewer!