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Help with Magnetic Snaps on Tote Bags

materialgirl | Posted in General Discussion on

I am making tote bags from hand embossed velvet. They are about 15″ wide x 14″ long unfinished.  I ordered some magnetic snaps for the inside as it seemed to “sag” in the middle and didn’t hang well.  I line them with a heavy upholstery trype fabric.

Do any of you use the magnetic snaps? My problems seems that they are so heavy for the velvet that I need to put something behind them.  ANy suggestions?



  1. kjp | | #1

    I have used two layers of very heavy craft fusible interfacing & it worked well.  If you're not washing the bag, you could also back it with a piece of cardboard. 


  2. sueb | | #2

    I make a lot of bags and use the magnetic snaps.  I use a piece of timtex interfacing behind each snap before I close the ends.  Timtex is the interfacing they use in hat brims. 



    1. materialgirl | | #3

      Sue, Would you cut a small piece , push the prongs thru the fabric then the timtex then close? Also, do you use some type of pliers to close the ends? I just ordered 100 of the snap sets and I guess I thought it would come with some tpe of explaination!

      1. sueb | | #4

        That's exactly how I do it.  I actually close the ends by pushing them against the side of my cutting table !  I do one side at a time and I close them inwards rather than outwards.  I've taken apart a lot of commerically bought handbags to see how they do it and some do it with the prongs towards the inside and some out so it's all on what your preference is.    I usually cut the timtex a little bigger than I need it to be and then trim it down once I've got the snap closed up. 

        Also, you don't mention where you bought your snaps but I've been getting mine from http://www.umei.com - they seemed to have the best prices and largest selections.  I actually get a lot of my handbag supplies from them.



    2. Hat | | #8

      how do you handle the linings on your bags.  Mine always look loose and ill fitting no matter how carefully I do the construction.  Do you use french seams to encase the lining in the bag?

  3. kayl | | #5

    Another choice, instead of a magnetic snap, would be to use a couple of stronger "rare earth magnets". They can have a lot of force for their

    size and weight. Radio Shack sells some that are 1/8" in diameter; though I wouldn't trust a pair as the only closure on a purse, larger,

    more powerful ones are available online fairly easily -- American

    Scientific is one possible source. Here's a set of three that have

    about 5 lbs force each, for instance:


    1. anneelsberry | | #6

      Just be careful if you're putting your wallet in these bags.  I've killed several debit cards by having them too close to the magnetic clasp on my purse!

      1. Jean | | #7

        Oooo, that's a good point!

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