Pretty Pleated Purse Pattern

It’s been a minute since we dropped a new Hot Mess Mommy tutorial on you. Why not, it’s mother’s day after all right? Don’t we deserve a little DIY treat? This is a clutch/shoulder bag that I thought would be fun for summer walks – just big enough for an ID, a granola bar, a wipes case, and a diaper.

If this purse isn’t up your alley, you might still enjoy learning how to make a purse strap, which is useful for any bag (or even belt) you might want to whip up.  This one is made with Tanya Whelan Dolce Lana and Dolce Marilyn in orange from trusty Fabricworm.

Get the full Pretty Pleated Purse Pattern & Tutorial after the jump…

Pretty Pleated Purse Pattern

1. Pre-wash, iron and cut your fabric. For this purse you’ll need the following:
Fabric A will be on the pleated base of the purse, Fabric B will be on the flap. You can change up how to arrange the fabrics or just use all one fabric, but this will replicate what I did:
For the strap: 24″X4″ piece of fabric and 24″X4″ piece of lightweight interfacing
For the lining: Two pieces 9″x6″ of Fabric A, 2 pieces 9″X8″ Fabric B
For the outside: Two pieces 18″X8″ Fabric A, 2 pieces, 9″X6″ Fabric B
2 pieces lightweight interfacing 8″X5″ and 2 pieces 8″X7″.
You’ll also need a coordinating zipper 10″ or longer.

2.  First we’ll create the strap.  Iron your interfacing to the wrong side of your 24″ X 4″ piece of fabric:

Fold in half and iron:

Fold each side to the middle and iron:

Fold in half again and iron:

Sew along the open edge:

Then sew along the other side:

Set your strap aside.

3.  Now we’ll create the lining.  Take one 9″X8″ piece of fabric B and lay it right side up.  Lay a 9X6″ piece of fabric A face down, aligning the 9″ sides. Sew in place with 1/4″ seam allowance.

Repeat with your other set of lining pieces.

Set your lining aside.

4.  Now on your 18″ X 8″ piece of Fabric A draw marks 3″ apart along both 18″ sides, on the top and bottom:

Now draw marks 3/4″ to either side of each of those marks:

Lift the fabric towards you until the two outer marks are aligned and the inner mark is right at the center (you’re creating a pleat)

Fold it over to the right and pin in place at the top and bottom:

Repeat across the entire width of the fabric:

Baste (a basting stitch is a straight stitch set to the widest width your machine will allow, usually a 5) along the top and bottom, 1/4″ from the edge:

Now at the point, you can trim 3/4″ off each side if you want to, or you can wait until later.  It was just easier to show you how to measure the pleats this way, but you do have 3/4″ extra width on each side.  Repeat this process on your other 18″X8″ piece of Fabric A.

5.  Now you can fuse your 8″X7″ piece of interfacing to the wrong side of the pleated panel.  Then grab your 9X6″ piece of fabric B and fuse your 8X5 piece of interfacing to the center of the wrong side:

Lay your pleated fabric A right side up, lay the fabric B right side down on top with the 9″ side aligned with the center of the pleated panel and sew in place across the top with a straight stitch.  Make sure you are sewing inside the basting line on the pleats.

You have assembled one outer bag piece:

Repeat to complete the second outer bag piece.

6. Now to construct our purse. Lay one outside piece face up, pleated panel on the bottom. Lay your zipper facedown with the zip to the left with the top edge of the zipper lined up to the top edge of the fabric. Now lay a lining piece facedown on top, with top edges lined up, like so, and pin in place:

Sew in place using your zipper foot:

Now fold your piece with wrong sides facing, it will look something like this:

Lay your other outer piece right side up with the pleated panel at the bottom:

Now lay your zipper and assembled pieces with the outside fabric face down and the lining fabric facing up as pictured. The zipper will be face down with the zip to the right this time. Make sure all the top edges are lined up:

Now lay your other lining piece right side down on top, also lining up the top edge and pin in place:

Sew together with your zipper foot:

Flip all the pieces around and unzip the zipper more than halfway:

Now take your strap.  One one outside piece, pin each side of the strap centered over the area where the two fabrics meet.  The unfinished edges of the strap should face out and the body of the strap should be in the center, on top of the fabric, like so:

Flip the panels around so the lining pieces are right sides facing on one side of the zipper, and the outer pieces are right sides facing to the other side of the zipper.  Your strap will be sandwiched between the two outer layers.  Pin in place all the way around:

Starting near the center of the bottom of the lining side, sew all the way around, across the zipper and back with 1/4″ seam allowance, leaving a hole for turning and back stitching at the beginning and end:

Trim your seam allowance and clip all your corners.

7.  Reach in and grab the strap and turn the bag right side out (carefully remove the pins holding your strap on):

On the lining side close the hole by sewing with a straight stitch (or you can slip stitch if you really can’t stand the idea of visible stitches in your lining):

Stuff the lining into the bag, push all the edges and corners out and iron:

DONE! Flop the top down to one side. Here’s the back view:




Soooo cute! Just got my sewing machine out of the shop and am itching for a few project. Think I'll make the strap longer, so that I can wear it crossbody.


Love it! I'm linking to this on my Craft schooling Sunday linking party. I see you're just too busy creating to stop by! all the best,


I am sort of confused on one little part. when starting the lining, do you sew all the way around fabric A when attaching it to the slightly larger fabric B?


I’ve just finished sewing this beautiful little purse and I absolutely love it. This is a great project! Thank You a millions for sharing.

Love Liane


I just finished making this little purse and think that I did something(s) wrong. Are the raw edges of the lining supposed to be showing? I got confused on the parts that say: Flip the panels around so the lining pieces are right sides facing on one side of the zipper, and the outer pieces are right sides facing to the other side of the zipper.


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