How To Make a Bandana Purse

The colorful and very useful cotton bandanas that go well with blue denims can be turned into many things. These square bandanas in dyed in solid colors printed with paisley designs in white, usually with a border pattern and a smaller central square with another pattern can made into a very handy and cute purse that can be used by little girls and teenagers.

  • Lay a bandana with the wrong side up on the table. Fold the lower edge over until you have reached seven and a half inches. Cut the excess material and put this aside as you will use it later.
  • Fold the right side of the bandana over to the left side to get the middle point. Mark the spot with tailor’s chalk. Measure five inches from the mark and do the same for the other side. Mark these outer measurements and cut the excess fabric from both sides.
  • Open the fabric and lay it flat on the table, wrong side up. Measure one-fourth inch around the edges of the bandana and fold it over. Fold the side edges once again and pin in place. Sew the long side edges only.
  • Cut two ten-inch lengths of fabric from the excess bandana material that you have set aside for the handles. The width of the fabric should be about one and one-fourth inches. Measure one-fourth inch all around and crease. With the wrong side of the fabric up, fold the fabric, aligning the long right edge with the left and iron the folds to keep it straight. Sew along the sides, about one-sixteenth inch from the edge.
  • With the right side of the fabric facing you, position the handles over the wider side of the purse, below where the top seam will be, one in front and one at the back making sure that the ends are spaced evenly apart from the middle of the purse and pin them in place. Mark at least an inch from the bottom edge of the handles and sew around the handle, and then sewing diagonally to make a big X.
  • Find the vertical midpoint and make a big box pleat or two smaller box pleats, one on each side from this vertical midpoint on the top and bottom edges. Iron the pleats so these will be clearly marked before pinning them in place.
  • Measure three-fourths inch from the left and right sides and run the iron over the fold to ensure a straight edge. This will be your sewing guide to close the side seams. With the fabric turned right side up, fold the bottom edge over until it aligns with the upper edge. Pin the two sides of the purse together and sew the side seams, and locking the beginning and end stitches. Open the seams and sew each seam edge on to the side of the purse.
  • Fold the purse flat. Measure one inch vertically and horizontally from the bottom and left corners of the bandana purse. Draw a line from the top to the bottom marks, creating right-angled triangles. Sew the fabric along the diagonal lines. Lock the stitches to prevent them from unraveling. This will give your purse one and a half inch wide sides and bottom.
  • Fold the top edge to make a one-inch seam and sew around. Take care that you do not include the handles when you sew the top seams and the pleats are neatly aligned.

Turn the purse inside out to view the finished purse. You can now add a button in front below the top seam, and a fabric loop at the back of the purse so you can have a closure for your purse. Add other embellishments that you like to make your bandana purse more personal and unique.


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