Let's Get Creative: Velvet Drawstring Purse (Parsons x Teen Vogue)

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

        Hey, fashionistas!  I am coming at you with another "Let's Get Creative" post!  Last night I added the finishing touches to my latest creation, this velvet drawstring purse, for the Parsons x Teen Vogue Certificate Program.  In this post, I will be talking about how I created this purse and my design process.  Hope you all like it!   

        My Pinterest board, Modern Victorian Fairytale with a Kiss of Western Charm, served as a springing board for me to dive right into the creative process.  After collecting fabric swatches based on the mood of that board, I began to think of ideas for the structure of the purse.  I wanted to construct a petite purse with a vintage silhouette to stay loyal to my love of historical fashion, but I also wanted to give it a modern geometrical twist.  With that said, I chose to create a drawstring purse, much like Marie Antoinette's gambling pouch.  Her exquisite purse had a circular bottom, but I decided on a square bottom and a taller structure, so the ruched fabric at the top would be an ode to the high-neck collars worn during the Elizabethan and Victorian eras.  Also, this design mimics the pleated high-neck collared blouse I created for another assignment.  However, before embarking on the final product, I created a mock-up out of muslin.  At that point in the design process, I knew I wanted to add grommets to the purse and a fabric or chain to close the top, but I had not chosen a material for the handle nor how to attach it to the purse.  So, in the charts below, I estimated production costs based on only the fabrics swatches I chose and the grommets.      


        For my final purse, I decided on the burgundy velvet as the outside fabric and the nude satin for the lining.  To elevate the look, I added a gold chain to cinch the purse closed and two gold sphere charms at the ends of the chain.  That way, the chain would not slip out the grommets even when the bag is opened to its fullest.  Also, I added a removable round gold handle to make this purse a functional piece.  

         After I sewed the purse and threaded the chain through the grommets, I decided a sturdy metallic handle would look the best.  Since I couldn't find a gold handle that would suit this design, I opted for a gold metal choker that I turned into a handle.  It was an unexpected choice, but I loved the way it turned out.  As you can see, I attached it to the purse with chain links and two toggle pieces (one on each side).  I chose the toggles because it allows the handle to be removable, making this bag both a drawstring pouch or purse.  Also, it allows easy access to the inside of the bag.  

         Last, but certainly not least, I sewed lines on the purse with gold thread for an elegant striped pattern.  The touch of gold added a subtle hint of sparkle, giving the purse a cohesive look.  Below, I have calculated the production cost and presented it in a chart.  

        Hope you all liked my latest creation!  Let me know what you think about this purse in the comments below! Until my next post, I am sending you lots of love from my heart to yours!

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