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I know I teased a lot with this tutorial, mostly because I made it so long ago, 4 months ago to be exact. I took the pictures the week I moved this little blog to WordPress. Since things got so busy after that I almost forgot I had it, until just a few weeks back. And finally today I have time to write this tutorial and hopefully, you'll get a chance to make your own ruffles handbag!

This is my first bag tutorial and I thought it would be nice to have a lot of steps, so you are warned, there are TONS of pictures :) maybe that's why it took me so long hehe

The Parts:

  • 2 pieces of 16×11 inches of main/outer fabric – I used home decor weight fabric for a better shape bag (pink, green, brown stripes)
  • 2 pieces of 16×11 inches of liner/inner fabric – I use a pink canvas
  • 2 pieces of 16×11 inches or bigger of lightweight interfacing – I use Pellon 808
  • 3 pieces of 7×3 inches, one of main/outer fabric, one of satin or the ruffle's fabric and one of interfacing – for the closure
  • 3 pieces of 2.5×24 inches, 2 of main/outer fabric and one of interfacing – for the strap
  • 3 pieces of 5×7 inches of liner/inner fabric and one of interfacing – for central pocket
  • 3 pieces of 5×10 inches, 2 of liner/inner fabric and one of interfacing – for double pockets
  • 2 pieces of satin (I used brown) of the following shape for the ruffles:


The Process:

[Click Images to Enlarge]

So as listed above you will need:
Main/outside fabric
Liner/inside fabric
Satin for the ruffles and closure
A set of magnetic snaps
A candle to burn the edge of the satin
Iron for the interfacing
1- Cut all your pieces according to the part's list and press interfacing to the back of both main/outside parts, one of the pieces for the strap, one of the pieces for the central pocket and one of the pieces for the double pocket.
2- Cut your ruffles and burn carefully all edges with the candle.
3- Once all edges are ready, with a matching thread and your machine set up at the longest possible stitch sew a line about an inch away from the edge.
4- Remember to leave a long piece of treat before and after sewing, because you will pull in one of them to make the ruffle.
5- Pull one of the treats at the beginning and even it out to have a cute ruffle.
6- Mark with a pin in the middle top and bottom of your main/outside piece (remember you had to already attach the interfacing at this point) and you will be marking the longer side.
7 – Now place the bottom of your ruffle in the center mark of your outside piece.
8 – Arrange the ruffle until it fits the length of your main/outside piece, pin the center so it doesn't move because you will need to sew on top of the line you sewed to make the ruffles.
9- Now sew a second line right next to the first one, I sewed it 1/4 inch away.
10- Repeat from step number 3 with your other main/outside piece and ruffle. Once both pieces are done place them facing each other and pin the outside.
11- Now sew 1/2 and inch away from the edge all the way around your bag, leaving the top open.
12 – Press your seems and the corners, you will need that to mark and sew the bottom.
13- Mark the bottom of your bag. I measure approx an inch away from the tip and made sure the length of the mark was 2.5 inches.
14- After that sew the marks on both sides. It will look something like this.
15- Now measure 3inches from the top on the inside of the front side, Make a mark so you can fit your magnetic snap.
16- Make both cuts.
17- Push the snap from the front and secure it on the back.
18-  Before securing the back make sure your snap is visible and not covered by the ruffles.
19- Now for the closure, you have both pieces and the satin has the interfacing in the back. I just drew a symmetrical curve on one of the edges for the snap.
20- To add more body and strength add a little piece of interfacing where you want your snap to be, I centered in the top of the piece. just make sure you have enough room because you will need to sew and then turn inside out.
21- Cut the interfacing excess and place the other side of the snap.
22- Place both pieces with the fronts facing each other and sew all the way around leaving the bottom open.
23- Turn inside out
24- with a matching treat sew all the way around to secure it.
25- For the strap. Place both fabrics with the fronts facing each other and sew on one side.
26 – Press the steam and fold the strap with the fronts facing out. Press the edges to the inside.
27- Here you can see how I pressed the edges to the inside.
28- Finally sew on top of both edges to secure it.
29- For the main pocket, you can add a label if you want, remember that one of the sides has interfacing in the back.
30- place both pieces facing each other and sew all the way around leaving the bottom open and cut the edges to have a better corner.
31- Turn inside out and press, press a fold in the bottom.
32- Repeat from step number 29 with the double pocket pieces.
33- Place one of the liner/inside pieces and center the main pocket.
34- Sew it together, I like the look of the contrasting treat so I sewed it double reinforcing the top edges.
35- Repeat step 33 with the double pockets and sew them as you like. I like to sew them double. Always remember to reinforce the top edges.
36- Place both liner/inside pieces facing each other and sew the sides leaving at least 6 inches open in the bottom, to turn the bag inside out later.
37- Secure the edges, I like to use a zig-zag stitch. Repeat step 13 in the bottom of both sides.
38- Now place the closure with the top facing inside and pin it to the opposite ruffle's side.
39- Pin the strap to the center of the sides.
40- and make sure everything is on the inside.
41- The pockets have to be facing in. pin all the way around the top to secure everything and sew around.
42- Extend and you will have this.
43- In the inside fold 1/2 an inch away from the strap (you can't  see it in the picture because the strap is in the inside, but you can feel it and mark to measure.)
44- Sew a 4 inches long line, 2″ below the center.
45- Sew 4 sides.
47- Turn bag inside out through the open in the bottom of the liner/inside.
48- You will end up with this.
49- Push the liner piece to the inside and sew all the way around the top.


I also made this other bag changing the measurements of the main pieces, making it a little big longer and smaller. You can make it just as big or small you want.

I hope you enjoy this tutorial and if you make it share pictures in the SewJoyful flickr group! I would love to feature your work too!

* This tutorial is provided for personal, use only. If you wish to sell items made with this tutorial please purchase a limited production license.
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Joy Kelley is a Chilean Designer & lettering Artist. Mom to 3 little boys. Crafter. Pattern lover. Color obsessed. Lemon pie dependent. And the hand behind the HowJoyful Studio & HowJoyful Shop. Read more about her & the blog here →

18 replies
  1. Amy
    Amy says:

    I love how detail this tutorial is! thank you so much I will definitely give it a try :) I will send you pics when I do.

  2. April (FlipFlopBride)
    April (FlipFlopBride) says:

    I just made my own version of this! Thanks for the tutorial. I’m going to try again, my first attempt didn’t turn out great, but cute anyways!
    You amaze me with all your talent!

    • Joy
      Joy says:

      Is so nice to hear form you!! and I’m glad you tried this! as people say practice makes perfection! so i hope your next try turns out like you want it! XO

      • April (FlipFlopBride)
        April (FlipFlopBride) says:

        I’ve come back to the blogging world after being away for months. I may start mine up again soon! Glad to see how well you are doing!

  3. Emily
    Emily says:

    This is so pretty. What a lovely design and detailed tutorial. I made a similar purse template a few weeks ago but actually made separate side pieces. I think your method of adding the gusset at the bottom works better; something I will try when I’m using a more flexible material.

  4. Natty L. Jacobson
    Natty L. Jacobson says:

    Wow, beautiful purse and wonderfully detailed tutorial and I can hardly wait to make this purse, this is the most detailed free project I have ever seen on the internet!

    Thank you so much for sharing with all of us!!!


  5. Christine
    Christine says:

    I am a bag designer in Australia and have recently started introducing my PDF bag patterns for sale and compiling tutorials and hints and tips for bag making, on my blog. My blog is relatively new and I am just in the process of trying to establish some links out there in the big wide world of BLOGS! LOL I am hoping you would like to exchange links with me?
    My Blog is:
    I would love to hear what you think and if you would exchange links with me? I will put your link in the sidebar if you are interested?…………
    ChrisW Designs

  6. fidelis
    fidelis says:

    i have liked the designs you have. i am not very good in sewing but i can join pieces. could you be having paper patterns for sale on the designs you have? and how much does each patter cost.
    keep the good work

  7. Cherie
    Cherie says:

    This looks simple to make. I make my own bags so I will add a couple of zippered compartments on the inside and one on the back panel for cell phone. In fact I think I’ll also make an overnighter and large shopper like this too! I love the ruffle in the front and it’s a great twist on a bag ! thanks!

  8. Nikell
    Nikell says:

    This is a really pretty bag! I’ll have to try this one out. Thanks so much for sharing (^_^)

  9. becky derry
    becky derry says:

    Thank -you for the tutorial.I just discoved your site today sure am glad I did and look forward to recieving your e-mails Thanks

  10. Patricia
    Patricia says:

    Thanks for sharing this instruction with us! Its beautiful! I have made my first quilt and would like to try sewing this.

  11. MissMary
    MissMary says:

    You are a gifted designer. I like both of your bags big bunches!

    Thank you for all of your hard work and for sharing it with us!


Comments are closed.