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A Mabel Handbag Sewing Project with Extra Features!

After I made my first floral Mabel handbag, (free pattern from Swoon) I decided to follow up with another one.  This time I am using one of these great case handles I had bought, adding another divided slip pocket and bag feet.

I had the handle in red so I chose a great cherries on navy fabric print I had been given, and a red and white polka dot for the lining.  I followed the instructions to prepare the flap as normal.

Then measured and marked the position for the handle's washers.  It was pretty tight, this is definitely the smallest flap it could fit.  The pins have to be bent outwards as they are too long to bend in over each other.

The instructions are simple and pictorial as you can see, and easy to follow but MAKE SURE YOU MARK THE SLITS TO MATCH THE FIXED PINS,  i.e. vertical not horizontal.  The finished result is sooo good, I love it!  

Once again I added a full width slip pocket, using the pattern piece for the lining body with two inches chopped off the height.  I stitched the pocket pieces right sides together with a 1/2" seam, pressed the seam and turned it right sides out.

Then I top-stitched along the sewn seam, basted the raw edges with a 1/8" seam and pinned it in place on the lining, matching the raw edges.

I basted the pocket to the lining piece that will be at the back of my bag.  I toyed with the idea of adding a zippered pocket but decided against it.

I drew a line up the centre then stitched up to the top, left the needle in and pivoted to take one stitch across, then stitched back down to the bottom to divide the pocket.  The lining is then assembled according to the instructions.

Next I wanted to add bag feet.  To give the bag a good stiff base I used some black corrugated plastic I had kept from some packaging and cut it to shape with the pattern piece.  I found the centre and measured out 1 1/2" from the side and 1/2" in from the front and back, marked the positions for my bag feet, then punched four holes.

My feet came without washers so I made my own by cutting up a margarine tub lid.  I used the black plastic base liner to mark the positions for the feet on the base of the exterior, cut four slits and treated the cut edges with Prym Fray Check. The feet are pushed through the exterior, the base liner and the washers, then split open.  I added a strip of Gaffe tape to protect the bag lining from wear by the pins.

So now for the finished bag, here you can see the case handle fitted on the top.  I just love the red with the cherries!

Here is the inside, gotta love red and white spots, and you can see the full width divided slip pocket as I used the exterior cherries fabric.

Here is the front view, I fitted an antique brass twist lock to match the brass fittings on the case handle.

Here they are together, my original floral Mabel handbag, and the new Mabel in cherry fabric.  The Mabel pattern is free from Swoon Patterns

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Comment by Karen on September 25, 2017 at 10:40am

The case handles are on sale from if you want to grab one before they are gone!

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