I’m not good with glue..

A lovely online friend has asked me make a clippy purse for her. You know the kind, one with a nice metal frame… I’ve told her I haven’t made one before, but that I’ll have a go… As I’m a complete beginner at the art of the clippy purse I decided to buy a kit from U-Handbag for my first attempt, because I wasn’t really sure where to start… and I have discovered that me + glue = an awful sticky mess + panic attack.  The sewing bit was fine, but as soon as tried to get the gluey fabric edges into the gluey frame, the cr*p hit the fan..  I just totally panicked and tried to shove the fabric in any old how, all the time worrying that the glue would dry…

It doesn’t look too bad from a distance – although it is a bit lop-sided.

It looks ok from a distance..
But close up there is glue all over the place, and the corners are really scrunchy.

Gluey purse

I have been working on scraping the glue off, but just as I think I’ve found it all, some more appears…

More glue and messy corners

So I am thinking about using a sew-in frame instead. As I am often am, I am really inspired by this gorgeous tutorial over at Annekata.  I had my doubts about sewing in a frame, but this one is just so lovely, I can really see the potential. Meanwhile, if you have any good resources for this sort of clip frame purse building, then I would be really glad to have your suggestions!

In other news, I have finally finished my Tova, for my blog-name-twin Kerry’s sewalong. It was odd the way that Tova-fever suddenly broke out on the little bit of the web where I hang around. I was looking for summer shirt patterns and pinned this and this, and this… then just a few days later, Kerry announced her sewalong, and it felt like fate! So here is my lovely new shirt:

My Tova

It’s by far the nicest thing I have every made for myself, and I owe a lot to Jenny Gordy who created this lovely design, and to Kerry, who has put together lots of brilliant additional info and tips for the nervous dresssmaker. But I’m also extremely pleased with my fabric choice, which is one of the beautiful organic handloom cottons available Ray Stitch. It was lovely to work with, and has created a beautiful, slightly sheer top, which will be wonderful as summer cover-up.

I’m off to London tomorrow for 24 hours of new baby greeting, partying with friends, and museum trips – will see you Sunday! Hope you all have equally lovely plans for the weekend.

31 thoughts on “I’m not good with glue..

    1. I actually made the Tova with a FBA. I’m a 34H and I totally agree, Ridiculous! Worked okay, but I wasn’t in love with it. I wear it to knock around in. My husband likes it on me though, so maybe it looks better than I thought. Good luck with yours. I’ll have to check your blog to see if you give it a go.
      Louisiana, USA

      1. Well, I downloaded it today and printed it out at my mum’s ( she was eyeing up the pattern too!), so wish me luck! I hope to squeeze a toile/muslin out of some blue knit that I picked up super cheap and hopefully it will be forgiving too.

  1. Well done Ali and remember to give yourself a few goes before you beat yourself up!! Two tips – before you put the fabric into one side of the frame, let it set for two minutes (I set the egg timer) – it is less goopy and less slippy slidey. Then I let that set for half an hour before i do side two. The other tip is that glue spots are almost inevitable – try nail varnish remover on a cotton bud – but try it first on spare fabric in case – i rarely find colour come off the fabric but ……..
    Forgive me if I am telling you what you already know!

  2. Yeah my first (and only so far) clip purse was the same- lopsided, scrunchy and glue everywhere. I think a thinner nozzle would help, and in my case NOT making my own pattern 🙂

  3. I was exactly the same with the purse kit – I loved the sewing but I swore a lot while doing the gluing! I do have a beautiful little purse now though and I would like to try more in the future.

  4. I’ve recently tried making some purses too, and my first one was a bit lopsided, but it still works perfectly for holding my phone charger and earphones. I was very nervous about the glueing, but realized that you have more time than you think before the glue sets, and I found that I could get the excess glue off by rubbing gently on it just after the glue was set. The second purse turned out much better than the first one, and now I’ve just bought a sew on purse frame too, so this seems to be quite addictive!

    1. That’s all we can do really isn’t it! It’s such a quick project to do until you get to the sticky stage – I feel that if I could just sort that bit out then I could make quite a few clippy purses..

    1. Oh thank you! My clippy purse looks a lot better in the photo than it does in real life (which is rare!), and so I decided to keep it myself.. My friend will get my next attempt, which hopefully will be a bit less wonky..

  5. For a first try, the purse is petty awesome. It’s adorable. And I love your blouse. The fabric is too awesome. It looks like something I would want to wear every day. ( I am wondering what a Tova is though. I’m in the U.S. so maybe it hasn’t made it this far? 😉

      1. Hi Ramona – thanks for your lovely words about my Tova – I pretty much did wear it every day after I made it. Sadly I had to wash it though. I definitely need at least 2 more so that I can have spares for washing day!

  6. You’re going off partying? Shocking behaviour 😉

    As for the purse, you don’t need much glue, and you can work pretty slowly. I use a screwdriver to ease it all in, getting the top first, then the sides

    1. Thanks Katy… that’s really helpful… in the pattern it said start at the sides, but that didn’t seem to work at all, and I did end up starting from the centre of the top section, so it’s good to know I wasn’t totally off message!

  7. Such a cute clippy purse! I like the slight imperfection, it makes it ‘handmade’!!! I had a similar experience, I still have a WIP glasses clippy purse in my sewing box, which is such a shame as I made it with Monaluna Scooter fabric. I love your Tova too, I’m still planning on making the ‘dress length’ one in white linen. All gorgeous!

    1. Oooh Emma, a beautiful white linen Tova, how gorgeous that is going to look. I’d like to make another plain one which I’d really like to embroider.. I have all these plans and too little time!

      1. Sometimes my head spins with the sewing ideas I have. I end up buying patterns, books, fabric and notions for one project and then never get round to it. I’d love to see your embroidered version, that would be divine!

  8. Where to start? No help on the purse frame but love your Tova and the fabric is gorgeous. Also VERY envious of your weekend London plans. They sound bliss.

    1. Thanks Annabella, I love the fabric, which was actually a bit of a fluke because I chose something else in the first place, and it had a fault.. I really recommend the Tova as part of your dressmaking project – it’s nice and straightforward with a couple of tiny tricky bits to keep you interested. London is going to be very fun – shame it’s only 24 hours 😉

  9. Your Tova is absolute heaven! The fabric is my favourite clothing colour too! If it’s any consolation, I know a 63 yr old, highly skilled seamstress who has been sewing all her life, who is currently having exactly the same problems gluing into those purse bits as you are…I think perseverance may be the key 😉 Your first attempt is actually far more successful than hers, so take heart and don’t give up.

      1. Oh, thank you Kerry. I’m wondering when I am going to be brave enough to try a fussy cut version like your beautiful voile version. But I think I am going to go with Liberty next, now I don’t feel too afraid to muck up the fabric. Or maybe another plain one with added embroidery. Choices choices!

    1. I’m so glad you like the colour, I love it. I am a red addict, which is probably a good thing because it looks ok with my fair skin and dark hair. I am wishing lots of patience and a bit more dextrousness for all of us who are struggling with gluing fabric!

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