Monday, April 9, 2012

Repairing and Adding Shells to a Summer Straw Bag

Hope everyone had a fabulous Easter!
 With all the sunshine and warm weather we're having I have really been getting the summer bug!
Recently I did my winter/summer wardrobe swap.  That's where I pack up all the heavy winter sweaters and boots and bring out all the swim suits and summer accessories.  Am I the only one that doesn't have enough closet and drawer space to keep all my clothes in the closet year round?

Anyways, I have several straw summery purses that I love for spring and summer.  I forgot how badly worn this one had become last summer before I packed it away.
All four corners were damaged like this.  I was about to throw it out when I realized I really like this straw purse and it was paining me to part with it.  So I decided to add some binding to the top edge to prolong it's life.  Although it looked just fine with the newly bound edge, I decided to add some shells to the top edge as well.
If you have a summery straw bag that needs some repair or you just want to add some shells, here's how I did it.
First I dug through my scrap fabric bin and found a color that I thought complimented the the purse.  My scrap wasn't very wide, so I had to cut 2 bias strips in order to have enough to go all the way around the top edge.  Hopefully you will have enough to cut one continuous strip.  I cut my bias strip 2 1/2" wide.

If you're not familiar with how to cut fabric on the bias, I've done a tutorial in the past that you can find here.
Since my bias strips were so short I had to seam two strips together.
I pressed my seam open.  Then I pressed my bias strip in half lengthwise.
Open out the bias strip and fold under 1/2" on both long raw edges.
Place the center fold over the edge of your bag and pin the edge along outside of the bag.
Using strong thread, hand sew this edge to the straw bag, going all the way through the bag.  Straw is pretty soft and I did not have any problems getting the needle through it.  
I joined my seam at one of the corners.  I left a 1/2" seam allowance and I hand sewed the seam making small close together stitches.
After you have the banding stitched to the front of the bag, wrap the remainder to the inside of the bag and pin about every 4".
Hand stitch this inside edge making your stitches about every 3/8".
This is what the edge looked like when I was finished putting the banding on.
I decided to add shells to the top edge like a fringe.  The shells I used were off a shell necklace I picked up at a thrift store.  I took the necklace apart and used the shells for this project.  The nice part was the shells were already pre-drilled with holes.
I used a heavy clear fishing line, you definitely don't want to use a cotton thread for this because the shells will wear away at the thread and it will break.  I placed the shells about every 1/2".
Easy huh?!

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19 comments:

  1. very cute - great tut! thanks for sharing and hope you enjoy your straw bag for many days to come...off to the flea market you go!! xo

    www.NorthernCottage.net

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  2. I'm a big fan of the summer straw tote, too! nice job!

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    1. Gina,
      Just bought a few more straw bags and I'm planning to do some more tweaks to them.
      Jules

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  3. Very stylish - I love straw bags! I have a few that could use a revamp like this. Yours looks like a Kate Spade design now.

    My best- Diane

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    1. I was happy with the way it turned out, glad you liked it too!
      Jules

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  4. Love it! Thank you for sharing the tutorial as well. xo P.S. I'm your newest follower!

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    1. Katherine,
      So glad you liked it. Thanks for following!!
      Jules

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  5. Thanks for a terrific idea, and an excellent tutorial. I'm a straw bag lover, too, so I know I'll be using your idea.

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    1. Your welcome. I would love to see pics of your straw bags when you are done!
      Jules

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  6. Looks like you are ready for the beach!! Thanks for linking to Things I've Done Thursday!

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    1. Melanie,
      I'm almost ready for the beach and summer, I still have a few more projects.
      Love your blog!!
      Julie

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  7. What a great way to update your bag and it looks stunning!

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  8. tres chic! i'm jealous that you've already brought out the summer stuff!

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  9. Thanks!
    When does summer weather begin for you?

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  10. find a great selection of straw bags here:
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/fluteofthehour?section_id=15754495&ref=shopsection_leftnav_2

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  11. find a great selection of straw bags here:
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/fluteofthehour?section_id=15754495&ref=shopsection_leftnav_2

    ReplyDelete