Nora SAL Day 1: Print, Cut, Fuse

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A bit about Nora before we begin the sewalong.

Nora is a classic doctor style handbag with a wide opening.

There are 3 size options for Nora:
Small handbag: 11″ x 8.5″ x 5.5″
Large handbag: 13.5″ x 10″ x 6″
Traveler: 17″ x 12″ x 8″

The cool thing about Nora is she does not require a bag frame!  The top casing contains boning in order to keep the shape.

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Time: 4-6 hours
Skill Level: intermediate-advanced

Materials:

  • 1/2 yard 44” wide woven quilting weight exterior fabric (1/3 yard for Handbags)
  • 2/3 yard 44” wide quilting weight or vinyl contrasting fabric
  • 2/3 yard 44” wide quilting weight lining fabric (1 yard for Traveler)
  • 3 yards fusible woven interfacing (Pellon Shapeflex SF101) (4 yards for Traveler)
  • 1 yard 20” wide foam interfacing (Pellon FlexFoam) (or 1/2 yard Soft & Stable)
  • 1/2 yard fusible stabilizer (Pellon Peltex 71F)
  • Four 1” rectangle rings (3/4” for Small Handbag)
  • One 9” all-purpose zipper (7” for Small Handbag)
  • One small turn lock
  • 1 yard 1/4” plastic boning with cover (1.5 yards for Traveler)

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Selfie with my large handbag Nora!

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Overall, Nora is a pretty easy, honestly.  Top stitching the sides can be tricky, very tricky.  Turning her is a pain and I popped a few stitching doing so.  Other than those two steps, you won’t have a problem sewing her up!

Now, let’s move on to the sewalong portion!

1st: Buy the Nora pattern.
2nd: Gather the materials:

  • 1/2 yard 44” wide woven quilting weight exterior fabric (1/3 yard for Handbags)
  • 2/3 yard 44” wide quilting weight or vinyl contrasting fabric
  • 2/3 yard 44” wide quilting weight lining fabric (1 yard for Traveler)
  • 3 yards fusible woven interfacing (Pellon Shapeflex SF101) (4 yards for Traveler)
  • 1 yard 20” wide foam interfacing (Pellon FlexFoam) (or 1/2 yard Soft & Stable)
  • 1/2 yard fusible stabilizer (Pellon Peltex 71F)
  • Four 1” rectangle rings (3/4” for Small Handbag)
  • One 9” all-purpose zipper (7” for Small Handbag)
  • One small turn lock (or magnetic snap)
  • 1 yard 1/4” plastic boning with cover (1.5 yards for Traveler)

2 Minutes 2 Stitch will be carrying Swoon hardware kits!

Other tips for purchasing the hardware:
1-boning is in the notions sections of your fabric store.  It’s typically in a bag in the aisles.  Boning is what is used in corsets.
2-There are many places on Etsy to purchase turn locks.  I bought mine through NingBags with excellent service and very fast shipping.
3-rectangles can be purchased through Strapworks.

For this sewalong:
SMALL HANDBAG measurements/instructions will be in red.
LARGE HANDBAG measurements/instructions will be in blue.
TRAVELER measurements/instructions will be in green.
Black instructions apply to all sizes.
Remember your color!

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Print out the pattern pieces on pages:
(ensure your printer is at 100% or actual size)
Small handbag: pages 19-22
Large handbag: pages 14-18
Traveler: pages 23-29

Cut out all the pieces along the black lines. Two of the pattern pieces need to be taped together.  Match line to line of the two As and the 2 Bs.  Tape together as above.

Before cutting-what material are you using for the closure tab?
There are two styles: vinyl or woven
Which ever style you will not use, set that pattern piece and stabilizer piece aside,  you will not need them.

Look at each pattern piece and cut out the fabric and interfacing requirements needed.  DON’T FUSE ANY INTERFACING YET!  Only cut materials!

In addition to the pattern pieces:

For the small handbag, you will also need:
Bottom Panel: 12.5″ x 5.25″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 lining fabric, 1 woven interfacing, 1 foam interfacing
Bottom Panel Stabilizer: 11.5″ x 4.25″ 1 stabilizer
Casing Stabilizer: 1″ x 10″ 2 stabilizer
Handle Connectors: 1.5″ x 34″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 woven interfacing
Handles: 3″ x 38″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 woven interfacing
Pocket Panel: 9″ x 12″ 1 lining, 1 woven interfacing

For the large handbag, you will also need:
Bottom Panel: 14.75″ x 6″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 lining fabric, 1 woven interfacing, 1 foam interfacing
Bottom Panel Stabilizer: 13.75″ x 5″ 1 stabilizer
Casing Stabilizer: 1″ x 12″ 2 stabilizer
Handle Connectors: 2″ x 38″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 woven interfacing
Handles: 4″ x 40″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 woven interfacing
Pocket Panel: 11″ x 14″ 1 lining, 1 woven interfacing

For the traveler, you will also need:
Bottom Panel: 18″ x 7.5″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 lining, 1 woven interfacing, 1 foam interfacing
Bottom Panel Stabilizer: 17″ x 6.5″ 1 stabilizer
Casing Stabilizer: 1″ x 15″ 2 stabilizer
Handle Connectors: 2″ x 44″ 1 contrasting fabric, 1 woven interfacing
Handles: 4″ x 44″ contrasting fabric, 1 woven interfacing
Pocket Panel: 11″ x 14″ 1 lining, 1 woven interfacing

SEAM ALLOWANCE IS 1/2″ UNLESS NOTED OTHERWISE!

Cut TWO pieces of boning
Small handbag: 4″ each
Large handbag: 5″ each
Traveler: 6″ each

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Find the two side panel stabilizer pieces and place non fusible side up.
Measure 1″ down from the lowest part of the top curve.  Draw a line.

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With the casing on the boning, pin the boning along the line you drew.  You will only be able to pin through the edges of the casing.

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Sew the boning to the stabilizer along the top and bottom of the boning casing.  You will probably need to use your zipper foot.
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Sewn on.

Everything cut out and stacked up!  For the additional cut list, I make labels.

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Now take your exterior side panels, the exterior bottom panel and the closure tab of your choice (mine is the woven style)IMG_3636

Fuse the stabilizer to these pieces first.

 

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Now fuse SF101  on top of the exterior side panel pieces (over the stabilizer), exterior main panels, handle connectors, woven closure tab without the stabilizer (if using the woven version), top casing pieces (if using woven fabric AND all of the lining panels.

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Take the exterior panel foam pieces and align the bottom and sides.  There will be a 1/2″ at the top that does not have foam.  Pin or clip in place.  Baste at 1/4″ down one side, across the bottom, and up the other side.  DO NOT BASTE TOP!  Repeat for the other exterior main panel.

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Repeat the same processing of basting the foam to the exterior bottom panel.  Baste around all 4 sides at 1/4″.

Done with day !