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making a purse stiff

Ki_Ramsey | Posted in The Archives on

I’ve been trying to make a purse stiff. it’s about 9 inches high by 12 inches wide made in semi stiff fabric about upholstery weight. I’ve backed it with fusible hair canvas. Not stiff enough. I’ve backed it with buckram. Impossible to turn right side out after sewing right sides together. I’ve used needlpoint plastic to line the bottom. Still to flemsy. I’ve tried sewing layers of flannel to my fabric and then sandwhiching the buckram in the middle by “sliding” it in after sewing. didn’t work to well. I’m trying make kind of a Kate Spade stiffness. Any suggetstions would be well appreciated. Thanks


  1. sanderson | | #1

    Don't know what Kate Spade stiffness refers to; the sandwich idea could have a lightweight plywood filling inserted before the top is closed/

    1. lynn_d._warner | | #2

      *Ki, I've been wanting to try the same thing for a couple of years and have been stopped by exactly this problem! I asked a sewing teacher who didn't have any specific answers, just suggested checking a tailor's supply catalog for suitably stiff material. If you do figure this out, I'd dearly love to hear your solution.

      1. Kimberly_D'Auria | | #3

        *[email protected]@[email protected],There is a product out there that is called chip. It comes in many weights to line or base your handbag. It is like a pressed cardboard but is grey in color.Also you can use bonded leather but that has a little more flex to it. That comes by ounces.I hope this will help you. K

        1. Marion_ | | #4

          *I haven't tried this but I read an article written by someone who had taken apart some ready-made purses to see how they were constructed, and she found ordinary cardboard had been used for stiffening. I don't know if it was glued to the fabric or just slipped inside. Wish I could remember where the article was -- probably in some book I got at the library. There were patterns and instructions. Maybe you could find it.

          1. Jan_Beasley | | #5

            *There is a stiff interfacing called Timtex, which is usually mentioned to use as the stiffening for baseball cap brims. You can use one or two layers. I'm not sure about a supplier, but I would try Judith M, Birch Street Clothing, or The Rain Shed. The first two have web sites.

          2. karen_morris_ | | #6

            *ki, i wonder whether the side of a 1-gallon milk bottle is as large as your purse? plastic from a milk bottle makes a great stiffener for something like that(you have to cut away the curved part of the bottle, and just use the flat part). i would sew and turn the thing, and then slide the plastic inside. you could even use two layers, if needed....

          3. Marion_ | | #7

            *If anybody uses any of these ideas, would you let us know how they turned out? I'm especially intrigued with the milk bottle one.

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