Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Want a Firm Bottom? (in your purse!)

Sometimes, especially if you stuff your purse like I do, its bottom tends to be droopy and/or it loses its shape.  A firm bottom can solve this.

This type of bottom is ideal for the Zippy Hobo, Jamie Purse, Tailored Tote, and Charmer Tote.

I like to make a firm bottom out of very stiff cardboard, covered in fabric.  You can cover in the same fabric you use for the lining or use a coordinating fabric.

Remember this is a removable bottom.  Remove before washing bag!!

1) Measure the bottom length of the purse from seam to seam.

2) Measure the bottom side seam.

In this case, the measurement (4" x 11.75") is exactly the length of the cardboard backing of a notepad.  This is also the weight of the cardboard I like to use.  You can also use plastic cross stitch canvas or foamcore board.

3) Cut the cardboard with an exacto knife.  You want the bottom to fit snugly into your purse, so make sure the rectangle is square (no slanting sides!).

4) Cut a piece of fabric about 1.5" larger on all sides (7" x 14.75").  This does not need to be exact!

5) Use Tacky Glue.  You want a glue that isn't too runny, as it will be a mess (trust me I'm adhesively challenged).  A glue that is a little thicker will hold the fabric without having to have it anchored.

Run a bead of glue along one length of the cardboard.

Fold up the fabric margin tautly (wrong side to cardboard) and press into glue on cardboard to hold.

6) Place glue in a triangle on the end.  Fold down the corner onto itself.  

7) Run a bead of glue along short end of cardboard and on glued fabric corner.  Fold down fabric margin tautly onto cardboard end.

8) Repeat Steps 6 & 7, this time on long end (glue on fabric corner, fold down corner, fold fabric margin tightly to cardboard).  


9) For last end, place glue on fabric and fold in both corners.

Put plenty of glue on fabric and cardboard.  Fold fabric tautly to cardboard and press a few seconds until it holds.

At this point, you can cut another piece of fabric to cover the cardboard that shows and the folded corners (this is the wrong side).  Most of the time, I simply place the wrong side to the bottom of the purse (out of sight, out of mind).

Let dry thoroughly. Place firm bottom into bottom of purse, pushing into corners snugly.  Remember to remove the firm bottom before washing.

No more worries about a saggy bottom!  Sew It Tonight!!

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