Last Friday the hub and I stopped at our local DAV thrift store. It's not the best of places; you have to dig to find anything, if in fact there is anything to be found. But the pricing's great. Nothing is marked; you simply take it to the check-out counter and they quote you a price, usually quite low. This time, I stumbled on a couple of 20" pillows with down/feather inserts. That's all I paid attention to: the inserts.
The checker messed me up though; he told me to pay whatever I wanted. Dang him! I know I could have had them for a couple of bucks, but it's a charity, and the inserts would have cost a pretty penny retail so I gave him seven dollars. Still cheap, all things considered.
Once home, I discovered the pillow coverings were nice in themselves with a neat quilted front: a center medallion and paisleys on four sides. But the rust color wouldn't work with my interior.
Then I found this pattern on a blog I ran across while wandering around the internet.
I don't remember which blog it was, but you can find the pattern here. There's a charge for it--and stipulations on the pattern that it not be used for items to sell. That latter fact I wish I'd known before I bought it, but in the end I decided to use the pattern as a learning tool, and for that $7 is insignificant.
But my mind had started working: I wondered how the outer shell of the pillows would work as a handbag.
Not too bad, all in all. The pleats didn't turn out as definite in the quilted fabric as in the pattern picture. They might be more so if I ironed them down, but I didn't. I made a few other changes as well.
I put in a zippered back pocket and a magnetic clasp, neither of which were called for in the pattern.
I also added a cell phone pocket in the front. (The pattern included instructions for one open pocket.)
Because the length of my available fabric was limited to 20", I had to fudge on the shoulder strap. (The pattern calls for 24".) I used one 20" length, and a shorter strip with a vintage buckle on the end. Then I added a button instead of the flower--because the button's really neat and matches the color of the buckle. I also think a vintage pin would look good on this.
All in all, it turned out pretty well for scavenged materials. (The lining was something my sis was getting rid of. Of course, I took it!)
And now I have plans for making more. Maybe the next one I can complete in less than the three days this one took. And perhaps next time I can make it look like the original. Maybe if I just follow instructions--I don't know why that's so hard for me.
So now I've finished my second glass of wine, and it's time to join the hub. Ta, y'all.