Embellished bag tutorial.

I have had some problems posting the pictures for this tutorial on the Focus on finishing blog (link in previous posting), so I decided I would also post the tutorial up on my own blog too with all the pictures.


stitched piece, leaving a generous margin around the design. My design was 9 cm x 16cm (3 1/2″ x 6″) and I added a 1-cm seam allowances for this project
fabric of the same size - I tend to cut mine slightly larger
ribbon for the hanger
Beaded trim
sewing thread that matches.


ruler or measurer’s tape
(optional) pinking shears
seam ripper or small pointed scissors
chopstick or whatnot to turn your work inside out and make crisp corners
hand-sewing needle
Sewing machine (optional)

This is a very easy project, and while a sewing machine will make your work go quicker, you can do this by hand. Anyone can do this project

Step 1: Cut backing fabric slightly larger than stitched piece, For this particular design I have allowed 5cm from the edge of the design to the seam and 1cm for my seam. For the top allow the depth of your lace plus a further 5cm for turning over to make the top neat. - As you can see from my picture I didn’t remember to allow extra at the top and so had to make a cuff. Iron both pieces and turn fabric allowed for top over and iron flat.

Step 2: Either hand sew or machine stitch the 2 sides and the bottom together

Step 3: Trim the corner so that when you turn it to the right sides and gently push the corners out they won’t be bulky

Step 4: Turn the bag right sides out. Push the corners out gently.Iron your pouch - its not a bag til the handle is on!

Step 5: Measure the top of your bag (mine was 15cm) and cut your lace that size. Pin or tack your chosen lace to the top of the front of your back, then handsew into place only going through the lace and the front of the bag.

Step 6: Pin or tack your ribbon or cord for the handle (this should be cut to your chosen size), either to the inside of the bag where you can’t see the tails or to the outside of the bag where you will see the tails, then handstitch into place securely.

Step 7: Measure the size of the bottom of your bag and cut the beaded ribbon to size. Pin or tack into place on the back of your bag at the bottom so you can see the beads hanging down. Hand sew into place.

Step 8: I added some tiny glass beads to the ends of my lace for extra adornment. You could do the same.

This type of bag lends itself to all sorts of designs and sizes and trims. Let you imagination run riot instead of beads and lace you could add tassels and pom poms, ribbon and cording etc etc.

Remember too that this is my way of making these bags I’m sure there are other easier ways than this, but this is how I do them.

If you do make a bag please share it with us all so we can see, it would be especially nice if you could post your finished bag on the Focus on Finishing (link in previous post)blog.


Sally said...

Brilliant tutorial Su:) Thank you ofr taking the time out to post this. I'll be having a go when I have a suitable finish:)

Susan said...

Thanks for the tutorial - I was in a fabric store, and saw some lovely beading, and immediately thought of your (upcoming) tutorial, so grabbed some of it. I'm going to have a go at making my own bag in the next couple of weeks (I have to find a design that will go with the beading I bought!)

BeckySC said...

You do such lovely/delicate work, Su :) The bag is no execption! BEEutiful!

Erica said...

Excellent tutorial. Even I, the sewing dummy, could follow it. I might just have to try it with one of my unfinished pieces.

Thanks for taking the time to write this tutorial!

lena-lou said...

Great tutorial Su, your pictures are excellent too :-)

Von said...

It's a beautifully finished project and excellent tutorial, Su! Thanks so much for sharing your technique. :D

Wendy said...

Wonderful tutorial, Su! I love all the sweet little extras you added to your bag. The beaded fringe is perfect for it! I can't wait to try one of my own :-D

Anne said...

What a gorgeous bag Su--so pretty and dainty! Thank you so much for the excellent tutorial. I am going to try this technique.

Denisa Baltazar said...

It's a beautifully finished embroidery.

Anonymous said...

Well Su, Everyone before me has said it all really but, i have to add that I really enjoyed your tutorial. You're a birn teacher. It's very clear and easy to follow. I can't wait to stitch something suitable to make my own. Your work is gorgeous, as always :>)
Warm hugs, Angela

staci said...

Your bag is just exquisite!!! Thank you for the fantastic tutorial!

Passion Bonheur said...

Your webpage is very pleasant.
I like it.
This embroidery is beautifull.

Stéphanie from France

Chelle said...

Thank you for a great tutorial!

Carol said...

Fantastic tutorial - thanks Su!

Novice Stitcher said...

This is such a pretty project and looks very easy for a beginner like me. Thank you so much for taking the time to share it!

Claudia said...

Thanks so much for this soooo lovely tutorial!!!! The finished piece is awesome: I like it so much!!!

Paisley said...

Thank you so much for the tutorial! Your work is exquisite!

Catherine said...


I am French, and I 've discovereed your blog thanks to Argone's.
I love the models you've chosen.
Well done
I'll come back to see more.



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