Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Finished! Butterick B4409: Another Westie Bag

Last spring, I saw an ad for a purse with pink flamingos and naturally I thought it would be so much nicer with Westies on it. Then I remembered I had the perfect fabric remnant with Westies embroidered on denim in my stash, so another Westie bag was added to my project to do list.

The pattern I selected, Butterick B4409, contains 4 different purse styles. I chose to do View C with modifications. I did not use the contrast along the bottom corners or for the handle tabs. The style was a pretty close match to the flamingo purse, but when it came time to actually start making the bag, I realized it was much larger than I intended, so I needed to scale it down.

I decided to reduce the width by 3 inches and height by 2 inches. I did this by folding the pattern piece vertically in the center, measured 1.5 inch on either side and drew vertical lines. I matched the two lines together then creased and folded the excess to one side. I did the same to reduce the height. After reducing the width, I needed to re-draw the curve at the top; I used a french curve and just smoothed out the edges where the original markings met on the pattern. In hindsight, I probably should have raised the curve up a bit so it is more of a gentle curve and not quite so U-shaped.

Similar changes were made to the pattern pieces for the lining and the bottom. I did not change the size of the inside pocket, but I did need to re-draw the placement markings.

I made some other changes to the pattern instructions, too. Instead of sewing just a heavyweight interfacing, I attached fusible batting to the denim cover to give the bag more body. I also changed the way the inside pocket is constructed by sewing two pieces of fabric together, turning right sides out and then topstitching to the lining. The original instructions have just a single layer of fabric with the edges turned under and hemmed, which seemed a bit flimsy to me.

Here's my new Westie purse - front & inside views:

Butterick 4409 Butterick 4409
The finished purse measures 10 inches wide by 12 inches tall by 4 inches deep. The lining is made of yet another home dec fabric remnant from my stash.

Butterick 4409The strap was recycled from an old blue faux leather belt I haven't worn in years. I cut off the length I needed and used tiny eyelet grommets to secure the ends around the swivel clip hardware. I fussy cut the the tabs that attach the handle so that a Westie is centered in each tab.

The original instructions say this tab should be stitched onto the bag, but I felt it was too bulky so I used Steam A Seam to fuse the lower part to the bag and stitched across the top only. So far, this seems to be secure enough, but I may need to add some hand stitches or fabric glue to reinforce it.

Although I like the look of the blue belt strap, its a little uncomfortable and tends to slide off my shoulder, so I may be making a replacement strap from the denim fabric. If I can find more of the swivel clips, it would be nice to have an optional longer strap.

Of course, a new bag requires a matching Wonder Wallet:
Westie Wonder Wallet Westie Wonder Wallet Westie Wonder Wallet
Once again, I fussy cut the fabric so that the Westie would be centered on the front. I used a decorative snap closure this time, just to try something different. The inside has a zippered pocket and the back has an extra vinyl pocket for keeping coupons and gift cards handy.

I haven't made it yet, but I'm thinking about making a matching cell phone holder - View A of the same Butterick pattern.

And now it's time for the side by side comparison:

Butterick 4409

Not exactly the same, but pretty close!


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