This is the second purse I've made with this beautiful embroidered teal fabric. Sadly, it will be my last because I have none left! So I'm going to celebrate it here. This is an "Ellen" style of purse.
I collect fabric from all over, so I often forget where it came from.

While I'm a bit sad that it's gone, I'm also excited for the two people who now own purses made from it!

You can see the other purse I made with this fabric here.

One of the very cool things about Sew Much Cuteness is that most of my items are one of a kind (OOAK). No cookie cutter stuff here!

Look at this gorgeous closeup:

How about this lining? It's a quilting cotton in natural with aqua and teal. The darker teal flowers match the exterior of the bag. 

I like the splash of "earthy" this fabric gives to this purse.

The interior has 2 slip pockets, a pen slot, a YKK zippered pocket and a magnetic snap closure. 

This bag is super roomy because I gave the bottom a 5-inch gusset. I think of this purse as a tote bag with handbag features. 

The double straps are also double-sided with both fabrics. I just think that looks neato.

Here's each side of the interior:

Thanks for looking & reading! If you're interested in your own custom "Ellen" purse, please check out this Etsy listing. Thanks & have a super day! -- Rene
I've been wanting to make a new style of cross-body purse for a while! I decided to go totally different from anything I've done. I had seen bags with the criss-crossed, angled pockets, and I liked that look. I want to call it a satchel... it's like a messenger bag without a flap. I don't know! What would you call it? Here she is, along with my new mascot, "Eyelet" the owl!: 
Yeah, I know the owl is cute! But don't let that distract you from the bag. Well, I'm distracted too -- my aunt gave it to me at Christmas time. It's from World Market. I think I'm going to use Eyelet as a prop in lots of my photos. Now back to the bag!
This bag is about 12 inches tall, 10 inches wide, and has a 2-inch gusset around the entire bag. It's a rectangular, boxy shape. The full top zipper curves a bit down each side, so the bag opens up nice and wide. You can fit a lot of stuff in here!
The three front pockets are nice and deep -- each goes to the bottom of the bag. You could carry books, e-readers, diapers, glasses or even owls in there! I really love the piping -- it matches the lining and gives the pockets a nice pop!
One side of the lining has a deep zippered pocket that goes all the way to the bottom of the bag. You can store a lot in there! I purposely put that pocket on the opposite side of the front zigzag pockets, to even out the weight. 

The other side of the lining has a nice phone pocket. It has darted corners, so it's got some volume to it. Eyelet the owl thinks it's a cozy spot!

Here's another shot of the phone pocket, before the lining was sewn into the bag: 

See the pocket? It's kind of camouflaged. I really enjoy the shape. 

About the lining: It's a chocolate brown quilting fabric with a light blue floral design.

As usual, I interfaced the fabric with Pellon Shape-Flex. It's my favorite interfacing for purses and most projects. It strengthens the fabric and gives it a bit of structure, but the fabric still drapes like fabric. 

About the exterior fabric: It's a home decorating cotton canvas from Premier Prints. The chevron design is in village blue/natural. The blue is like a cornflower blue with a touch of gray in it...not as bright as it appear in the photos. I found a photo that shows the true color at the Premier Prints site.

The strap is meant to be worn across the body. It's nice and long! If you want to wear it shorter, it is narrow enough to tie in a knot at the shoulder. 

When I custom-make these, I can change the strap length if needed for your height. This one has a 27-inch drop. It's just right for me at 5'7" -- the top of the bag sits just at my low hip.

Another feature I can customize is the interior pockets. Want more or different pockets? Just let me know. I love making bags to suit your needs!

Now, back to Eyelet the owl!

She wants to show you a nice closeup shot of the chevron fabric. It's a "slub" fabric (an unfortunate word), which  means it has lines and texture that resemble linen. I like it, and I have a lot of Premier Prints fabrics like this. If you check out my Canvas & Heavyweight Cottons photos, you'll see a lot of this fabric.

Premier Prints has a lot of different colored zigzags
Here's my prototype of the Zigzag Bag. I used a vintage cotton canvas. It was kind of my  practice one and there were a few things I tweaked the second time around. 

A friend and customer of mine fell in love with this bag and bought it right away! I'll be making her a matching wallet in the vintage fabric. Yeah -- wallets are another new project for me! I've been wanting to try them for a while. 

I used a bright orange zipper and lined the bag in a natural cotton canvas. 

I can't wait to make more Zigzag Bags in many different fabrics!

Want to order one?

Please don't. Not until Feb. 1st, because it's going to be my featured item for February! What a way to debut it! Instead of its regular $50, it will be $43 in the month of February! 

Check my Etsy shop tomorrow (Feb. 1) or anytime during February, and place your order for a Zigzag Bag. Here are my fabric options to get you started. Thanks! -- Rene
Thanks to my kind friend Lisa, I had a 30% off (regular AND sale) coupon for Joann!

I had a pretty long list of things I needed for making purses, plushies and other things. I also decided to stock up on things I always need, like cotton batting, fiberfill and fabrics. But HOLY cow, did I get a lot! Buttons were 50% off, so I bought a bunch -- mostly these adorable flower-shaped ones that I plan to use on the outside of a new purse style. 

Look at my big pile of goodies! (The sewing machine is not new.) I've been wanting some wooden racks for my thread and bobbins, and I got a great deal today. 

I am absolutely addicted to fabrics and almost everything was on sale. I got some home decorating fabrics, which are perfect for the outside of purses, for 60% off -- and then another 30% off with my coupon!
It's kind of dangerous for me to go to Joann's with no time limit. I was there for 3 and a half hours -- my record, I think! Is it ridiculous that I had the time of my life??

I spent over $200 but got more than $500 worth of stuff! Woohooooo!

Now I'm going to photograph these luscious new fabrics so I can post them on my Flickr photostream

Have you checked it out yet? I have all my fabrics neatly organized and labeled for your viewing & selecting pleasure. It's working out really well so far. 

-- René 

**NEW** Want to check out my fabric stash?? I have photos of many of my fabric options in my Flickr photostream.

I have only  just begun to photograph all my fabrics, so please check back often! I have an eclectic collection of new, vintage, ready to be repurposed, children's, home decor, and many cotton fabrics -- but quantities are limited. So if you see a fabric you like, let me know ASAP! I'll make you something super out of it.

I hope this will make custom orders easier. The majority of my projects are custom, and I want you to love what you order from Sew Much Cuteness!

- René

I got a lot done today, so I rewarded myself by drooling over fabric. I have a large stash in my home studio, but there's an endless sea of softly draping beauty out there! 

Just for kicks, I made an Etsy treasury featuring some fabrics I'd love to make purses out of! If your idea of eye candy is the same as mine, you'll enjoy! 

By the way, that's my favorite color right there -- and my favorite shade of it. Leafy green. Mmmm.


    Rene Smits

    Welcome to my passion! 
    I specialize in creating high-quality custom purses and bags. Feel free to contact me with your custom requests. I also sell my ready-made pieces on Etsy: Sew Much Cuteness.

    Etsy shop

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    Flickr (fabric options):


    Cross Body
    Cross Body
    Custom Orders
    Ellen Purse
    Emily Bag
    Fabric Stores
    Jill Purse
    Lunch Tote
    Madeleine Bag
    Messenger Bag
    Sewing Studio
    Tote Bag
    Zigzag Bag


    April 2013
    February 2013
    January 2013