Flourish Clutch Sew-a-long, Day 5: Applying the Frame

This is the last day of the Sew-a-long! Thanks so much for joining me this week.  I really love this pattern, and hopefully you've enjoyed yourself and will want to make more!

Here are all the links for the sew-a-long:

November 14th: Fabric, Frames, and Interfacing
November 15th: Cutting out all the fabric and interfacing
November 16th: Sewing the exterior
November 17th: Sewing the interior, sewing them together
November 18th: Gluing or sewing on the frame

So here you are, purse all sewn together and your frame ready to go.  This is the part that you've probably been dreading.  While it's not my favorite part of this pattern, I'm here to tell you--it's not that bad!

First off, if you have a sew-in frame, I don't have any on hand that are rectangular, so I can't show you photos.  I'm actually going to be a little lazy here and direct you to the pattern and the pictures there. I would recommend you use thicker thread here, though normal thread will do too.  I have done it before with normal thread by doubling the strands (which are already doubled, so there were four strands).  That was a huge headache though.  So I would recommend getting some sort of heavy-duty thread.

If you have a glue-in frame, let's talk glue.  Some purse-makers swear by Gutermann's glue, but I've also heard it's getting harder to find.  (There's a frame seller on Etsy that sells a similar glue called Hemline, but I have not tried that yet). I have used a few different ones, and I keep going back to my trusty Amazing Goop.  If you are looking at glues, try to find something that says it works with both metal and fabric.  You don't want it too runny. I tried to find a glue once that didn't have awful warnings on the outside, since I was pregnant, but the ones I tried were too runny. I generally sit next to an open window with a fan on, or at least make sure I am in a well-ventilated space.

But before you even glue, this is probably a good time to check the fit of your frame.  I like trying to fit the edges of the my purse into the frame, just to make sure nothing is too thick.  If it is, I included tips for that in yesterday's post near the end.  1. Iron the edge. 2. Pick out the seams in your trouble spots (see the pictures from yesterday for a more thorough explanation).

So, now that you know your purse will fit, you are ready to glue. If your glue doesn't have a long tip for gluing, toothpicks will help you get the job done.  Start with just one side of the frame.  Once you get more comfortable, you can do two sides at once.  But for now, I'd just do one side. Start dabbing glue along the inside of the channel.  I try to keep the layer of glue thin and consistent, but you want to try to cover as much surface as possible. Just remember--if you have too much, then it will ooze out when you put the purse in.  But it will contract somewhat as it dries, which is how you can insert the purse without too much of a mess.

After you finish, you may need to let it sit for a few minutes.  My glue calls for that.  It's good to check the instructions on your glue.  I let it sit 5-10 minutes, which is actually longer than the instructions say, but I like to make sure it's tacky and not still wet. (And now we reach the part of the tutorial where I desperately wish for a third hand but must make do with two.)

Before you put the purse in, now is the time to pick off any excess glue from the frame.  At this point you can just peel it off, or rub at it a little and then peel it.  Check all visible parts of the frame.  This is easier now than when you have the purse in.

Now, time to insert the purse.  I usually stick one corner in first.  I use my trusty butter knife to help me push the purse in if necessary.  Then I like to move downward until that whole short side is done. Then I insert the other corner in, and move down the other short side.  After that, I use my fingers and knife to get the top in.  I like to use the knife to push along the top of the inside, then turn and push in along the outside, just to make sure everything is in nicely. Sometimes you just have to alternate pushing from the outside and inside until you have everything in.

Now, time to wait.  I would give it 30-60 minutes to really dry well.  (Okay, well, I would actually have glued both sides and inserted both at once, BUT, for your first purse, take it slow! Nothing is as frustrating as pushing one side in beautifully and then when you do the other, it starts pulling out, and you smear glue on the fabric).

Once your wait time is over, repeat the same instructions with the other side. 

I usually close it to dry, but you can also leave it open.  I then let it dry overnight before doing anything else with it.

And . . . you are done! Great job! I hope you enjoyed your Flourish Clutch, and that you'll make many more.  If you are interested in another frame purse pattern, I also have the Curvaceous Clutch pattern for a round frame. And the sewing for that one is even simpler!