Sewing Midcentury style handbags

Last year I had a spate of sewing bags. I was kind of experimenting with ideas for new products I could sell but I didn’t get around to sharing them for opinions, so I thought I’d make a blog post out of them.

midcentury fortune cookie bag

retro style tie bag

The first one which I love is this fortune cookie style bag with a tie handle.

I think this could be really cute for a night out. Big enough to fit a purse, keys, phone and some makeup but also small and convenient enough to fit over your wrist (useful if you spend a lot of time dancing!)

midcentury fortune cookie bag

grey 50s fortune cookie bag

It has a zip opening and the handles just tie in a knot to make the handle.

The pattern was from a Butterick free pattern which I found years ago but I’ve managed to find a link to it here,

This one was really easy to make up, worth having a go if you are interested since it only uses a small amount of fabric too.

50s fortune cookie bag

The second bag is what I believe is called a Japanese knot bag although this was actually from a 1940s vintage pattern that I found on

midcentury knot bag

grey japanese knot bag

If you are a crafter or even if you are just interested in vintage in general,  pop over and check out Brittanys blog, she has lots of ideas for projects as well as vintage fashion, hair and makeup tutorials.

The bag closes by slipping the longer side of the handle through the shorter side and again will slip easily over your wrist on a night out.

knot bag handle

hand made bag in midcentury fabric

I found it a bit tricky to sort out the lining around the strap but I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out. Both these were made in my Monterey interior fabric which is a nice weight for a bag.

The last one I want to share I made in Sedona. I’m not really a brown kind of girl where clothes and shoes are concerned so I’m not sure I’ll ever use this one.

Maybe I’ll run a competition and give it away as a prize sometime when I get my act together and think about it properly.

50s hand made bag

50s carpet bag.

This one was made from a pdf download pattern that I bought on Etsy from this shop, 2nd Look Vintage,

1950s fabric bag

It was a pdf download pattern but pretty straightforward to print out. Making it up wasn’t quite such a breeze and I have to admit I did struggle with it.

I’m pleased enough with the results, and it is most certainly usable although I’m not sure I’d trust it to hold much weight. The straps are only held on with post rivets which I reinforced with copper washers becasue I thought they looked good with the fabric but I suppose I could also stitch them too.

I’m not sure I would make it again. The piping was an absolute pig to get right and I really struggled with the lining, but these things are usually easier the second time around aren’t they?

What do you think?

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