Sunday, July 24, 2011

not Vera

There are some cute things at Vera Bradley, especially the Dockside Canvas collection and the Cabin collection. It's rare that I like her signature style floral patterns - they're just too busy for me! If I had to choose a pattern, it would probably be the simple "twirly birds" print in navy and white or pink and white. I have one Vera ID case in "pinwheel pink" that I got at a swap meet, and I do love the colors in it. It's also very well made, and I appreciate all the thoughtful finishing details.

Inspired by that ID case, I decided to use some of my scrap fabric from this project to make my own! I didn't have any vinyl on hand for the see-through ID window, but I'm pretty pleased, regardless.
I cut a 6" by 4" piece of fabric to use for the main body of the little purse, and cut another piece of the same size to make interior pockets. I stitched all around the outside piece to keep it from fraying and added grosgrain ribbon to the outside. For the inside piece, I hemmed each of the short ends and added more ribbon trim. I then centered the pocket piece on the main body piece, right sides together, and stitched. I created a loop for the side with a 1" wide strip of fabric, folding and ironing each of the long sides in to the middle, and then folding in half to create a strong strap. I tacked it to the purse, and then I had to put it away until a zipper could be found.

I found an appropriately colored vintage metal zipper in my mom's stash, and cut it down to size (I don't recommend doing this with a metal zipper! So inconvenient). A few stitches later, and my project was finished!

There's space inside for a credit card in each side pocket, and my cell phone fits nicely in the middle.

Ta-da! That's my Vera look-alike.

I'll be doing a few things differently next time, though! As I looked at the original ID pouch, I realized that it's made of a lighter cotton fabric, not heavy decorator fabric like mine. The zipper (which has plastic teeth and a bigger pull tab) is not sewn in so close to the teeth as mine is, making it unnecessary to tack down the zipper fabric like I had to do in mine. The end of the zipper itself is finished with fabric binding made from matching fabric, and then sewn in. This keeps the zipper from unzipping too far (I had to stitch over my zipper teeth by hand to keep it from slipping too far). I should have measured the dimensions of the purse from the inside, since I just noticed that the whole inner seam is finished again with matching fabric binding. Corners are rounded, not square like mine. The vinyl adds a lot of stiffness, which I like. I'm not sure if I'll invest in any, but I do like it.I'm also a fan of the larger key ring and smaller loop.

Bottom line? I really appreciate the craftsmanship and would certainly pay the $8-$12 for another one... if I loved the fabrics! What if Vera Bradley collaborated with Cath Kidston? I would be so smitten!

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