Embroidery Library

Mandarin Dress Bag

 

Be the talk of the town with this gorgeous Mandarin Dress Purse!

Use luxurious fabrics, shimmering metallic thread, Asian-inspired designs, and delicate details to create this beautiful bag.

So beautiful you will use it for every occasion. Make one for yourself and few more for girlfriends, daughters, nieces, granddaughters and coworkers. As a gift, it'll elicit oohs and ahhs at the party.

The purse has a finished size of 10 inches wide x 10 inches high x 3 1/2 inches deep.


Supplies needed:

** 1 yard crepe-backed satin fabric
** 1/2 yard brocade fabric

** Pair of 5 1/2 inch wide x 4 inch high bamboo purse handles (loop shaped)
** Cut-away stabilizer
** 3 1/4 x 7 1/2 inch piece of corrugated (thick) cardboard

** Polyester or cotton batting
** Air-erase pen
** Temporary spray adhesive
** Permanent spray adhesive
** 1/2 yard decorative piping
**
Masking tape
** Dressmakers pencil or colored pencil
** Frog closures (one large and two small)
**
Needle and thread for hand sewing

Designs Used:
** Chinese One-color Dragon 1 - Lg
   also available in or Sm
or Med
** Chinese One-color Floral 1 - Lg
   also available in or Sm
or Med


Click here to open a .PDF file of the purse patterns. The purse patterns are split into eight sections, which will print on eight pieces of paper.

 

Cut out the shapes from the paper. Be sure to cut out the notches on the patterns as well.

 

Align the numbered sections and lettered sections as instructed on the pattern and tape into place.

The pattern that includes Sections A-D will be referred to as Pattern A. This pattern will be used for cutting the outer shell and inner lining fabric.

The pattern that includes Sections 1-4 will be referred to as Pattern 1 and will be used for the front layer of fabric.

Lay the satin fabric wrong side up and pin to Pattern A on top.

Use a dressmaker's pencil to trace the pattern onto the fabric.

Print out full-size templates of the designs, using embroidery software. Trim the design to a manageable size.

To position the templates evenly from top to bottom, find the center of the fabric. Use masking tape to hold the design in place. Mark the center point on the fabric.

Poke a hole in the center of the template and mark the fabric. Also mark the horizontal and vertical axis lines. These lines will be used for hooping.

Hoop the fabric with cut-away stabilizer that has been sprayed with temporary adhesive. Align the marks on the fabric with the lines on the hoop.

Attach the hoop to the machine, and load the design. Move the hoop so the needle is directly over the center point on the fabric, and embroider the design.

In the project sample shown, we used black metallic thread. To learn more about embroidering with metallic thread, click here.

After the design has been embroidered, unhoop the fabric and carefully trim away the excess stabilizer, leaving about 1/2 inch of the stabilizer around the design.

Cut a piece of batting slightly larger than the fabric. Spray the backside of the fabric with permanent adhesive. Do not spray the "neck" of the fabric. Lay a piece of batting on top of the fabric.

Cut around the shape of the fabric. Do not cut the notches.

Trim away the batting from the top neck of the batting as shown.

Lay the satin fabric right side up, pinning Pattern 1 on top, and trace the shape. Cut around the pattern leaving 3 inches all the way around for easy hooping.

Print a template of the design and lay it at the bottom corner of the fabric; leave about 2 inches from the edge of the design to the edge of the fabric. Tape the corner and mark the center point and axis points.   

Remove the template and draw lines connecting the the axis points..

Hoop the fabric with cutaway stabilizer that has been sprayed with temporary adhesive. Align the marks on the fabric with the lines on the hoop.

Attach the hoop to the machine, and load the design. Move the hoop so the needle is directly over the center point on the fabric, and embroider the design.

After the design has been embroidered, unhoop the fabric and carefully trim away the excess stabilizer and cut out the shape.

Add batting to the back of this fabric as well. 

To create the front outer shell, pin Pattern A on the wrong side of the fabric and trace the shape.

Cut out the shape.

Add the front outer layer fabric to the front outer shell fabric.  Lay the outer shell fabric right side up and lay the front layer fabric on top, batting side down. Align the bottom edges together, and pin in place along the sides and bottom.

Add the decorative piping to the to the top edge of the front layer fabric by folding the fabric over 1/2 inch and tucking the piping between the fold and the outer shell. Leave about 1/4 inch excess piping on each end, and pin in place. Pin through all the layers.

Use a zipper foot and sew a 1/2 inch seam along the fold, next to the piping. Continue sewing a 1/2 inch seam along the sides and bottom, sewing the the layers together.

Constructing the Bag

Cut a piece of fabric to 32 inches by 4 1/2 inches for the bottom and sides of the purse.

Lay the fabric right side up and mark the center lengthwise on each side, which is 16 inches from the end. 

On the wrong side of the fabric, mark the bottom on the center, which is 4 1/2 inches from the side.

Lay the side/bottom fabric right side up. Lay the front fabric, wrong side up, on top of it, aligning the center point of the front fabric with the bottom center point on the side/bottom fabric. Pin the fabric together starting from the center point and working your way up the right side only.

Sew a 1/2 inch seam along the pinned edge, sewing from the center point up. Stop sewing when you reach the top end of the side/bottom fabric, leaving 1/2 inch allowance. This allowance will be folded and sewn later.

Pin the other side in place, once again working from the center point up. Sew a 1/2 inch seam, leaving a 1/2 inch allowance at the top of the side/bottom fabric.

Mark the bottom center point
(4 1/2 inch from the side) on the back outer shell and align it with the center point on the open side of the side/bottom fabric with the right sides together.

Pin in place and sew the pieces together with the front fabric. Leave a 1/2 inch allowance of the side/bottom fabric at the top ends.

Create the bottom of the bag by cutting a piece of corrugated cardboard to 3 1/4 x 7 1/2 inches. Spray one side of the cardboard with permanent adhesive.

Turn the bag right side out and press the cardboard (adhesive side down) in the bottom of the bag.

Inner Lining

Create the inner lining of the bag by measuring 1/2 inch up from the dotted line on Pattern A. Draw a line and trim off the top of the pattern. This makes the pattern the perfect size for cutting the inner lining fabric.

Pin and trace Pattern A on the wrong side of the satin fabric.  Trace and cut two pieces for the front and back of the inner lining.

Cut a piece of satin fabric to 32 x 4 1/2 inches. This is the side/bottom fabric of the inner lining.

Measure and mark the center on both sides of the right side of the side/bottom fabric, which is 16 inches from the end. Mark the center bottom of both the front and back pieces as well
(4 1/2 inches from the side). Align the center points with the fabric right sides together. Pin in place.

Sew the pieces together with a 1/2 inch seam.  Remember to leave a 1/2 inch allowance at the top of the side/bottom fabric.

Fold the edges of the "necks" of the outer shell 1/2 inch and press in place.

These parts of the outer shell will be wrapped around the handles and sewn in place.

Sew a 1/2 inch seam around the top and side edges of the outer shell "necks".

Insert the inner lining into the outer shell. Fold the allowance of the side/bottom of the outer shell and inner lining in 1/2 inch and pin in place. Fold the allowances of the front and back of the inner lining in 1/2 inch and pin in place. Fold the "necks" of the outer shell over the handles and pin in place over the folds of the front and over the inner lining.

Use the zipper foot to a sew a seam right along the edge of the folds all around the top opening of the bag, sewing all the layers together.

Tack the inner lining to the outer shell by hand sewing each corner in place with a few stitches. Also, tack a few stitches along each of the side seams.

Last, add the frog closures to the front of the bag by pinning them in place and then hand sewing them to the front layer.

 

Ta-da! Just add your wallet, cell phone, keys and lipstick before you head out the door to try your funky new purse!

Click here for a printable version of these project instructions.

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Products used in this Project: