Posted by: JoAnna | April 2, 2011

Handbag Organizer

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I’ve been so busy lately that I haven’t had much time to make projects, let alone post on this blog 🙂  This particular post is long overdue, and unfortunately I’ve forgotten most of the details, but I wanted to at least post pictures of a handbag organizer I made for my friend Tina as a Christmas present.  I got the project idea because she had been complaining about not being able to find her stuff in her two big tote bags.  At first I wasn’t set on making one myself, but I looked at a couple of different handbag organizers and they were pretty ugly.  So I had no choice but to dust off the sewing machine and take on this new project!

I didn’t use a pattern (the organizer is basically lots of different sized rectangles), but I did base the measurements off of a handbag organizer sold at the Container Store.

I ended up using two different fabrics, a solid for the outside and a pretty cotton print on the inside.  I decided on denim for the outside because I wanted a heavier fabric to give the organizer some structure.  I looked at some denim at the fabric store, but ended up recycling an old pair of my sister’s jeans and incorporate the existing back pockets (less pockets to sew!).

The end product ended up being 11″ long x 6″ high x 4″ wide on the bottom/1″ wide at the top (both sides are “pinched in”).  The organizer has two pockets on the outside (using the original back pockets from the jeans, but decreasing the distance between the pockets) and seven pockets on the inside — 3 pockets on each side and one big pocket in the middle.

If I did this project again, I would’ve decreased the size of the fabric panel used for the middle pocket.  I find that it gaps out too much.  Originally I wanted to put a zipper on the middle pocket, but I didn’t end up doing that.  If I did, I think the organizer would have had to be taller for this pocket to be functional with a zipper.  Also I also initially wanted to make the organizer adjustable in width (like the organizer from the Container Store was), by building snaps into the top on each side, but I ended up  permanently sewing both sides in at the top.

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Project Stats
Pattern: My own pattern based off the measurements of a handbag organizer from the Container Store
Time: 4 hours? (I really have no idea since it was so long ago!)
Fabric: An old pair of denim jeans and cotton quilt fabric (1/4 of a yard?)
Notions: Thread

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