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How to make Faux Leather (or vinyl) handle connectors for your Ingenious Tote

Ingenious Tote with Vinyl Strap Connectors

Hi Everyone!

You might have noticed a trend in my patterns more recently…most of them have options for leather or faux leather included in the pattern – The Peekaboo Clutch, The Hippo Hobo, The Panic Clutch and the Reunion Clutch.  I am really enjoying including these options in my patterns.  Knowing some of my older patterns don’t include these options doesn’t bother me…except for the fact that I really think the Ingenious Tote would look fabulous with some leather or faux leather accents too!  So today I’m going to show you how to make faux leather (or vinyl) connectors for the handles on your Ingenious Tote!

How to make vinyl connectors for the ingenious tote (2)

What do you need?

  • 4 x faux leather (7″H x 3″ W {17.5cm x 7.5cm})
  • Eraseable maker
  • Ruler
  • Double sided tape (optional – but it REALLY makes working with faux leather HEAPS easier!) – you can use clips if you don’t have access to double sided tape.

Lets get started…

connector2

1. Start by making markings on the height of one connector – ON THE WRONG SIDE. First mark 1 1/2″ (3.5cm)  {the centre point} this mark should stretch the entire length of the connector.  Then mark 3/4″ (2cm) from either side edge, ensuring that the mark you make stretches the entire length of the connector.

2. Now its time to make the markings across the width of the connector – again these are made ON THE WRONG SIDE. Start at the top, make a mark 1 1/2″ (3.5cm) down from the top edge, this mark should stretch the entire width of the connector.  Then mark 3/4″ (2cm) from the top edge, ensuring that the mark you make stretches the entire width of the connector. Repeat this process to make these same markings along the bottom edge of the connector.

connectors4

3. The last markings you need to make (ON THE WRONG SIDE of the connector), are diagonal ones shown above.  Draw a diagonal line from the 1 1/2” (3.5cm) line above the short raw edge to the 1 1/2” (3.5cm) line at the centre where it meets the short edge. Repeat for all 4 corners of the connector.

connector5

4. Cut your connector along the diagonal lines you made in step 3.

5. Place some double sided tape on the wrong side of the connector (at the 1 1/2″ or 3.5cm line), then after removing the backing paper from the tape, fold the tips of the connector back to meet at the line.

6. Repeating the process from step 5, place some double sided tape on the wrong side of the connector (at the 1 1/2″ or 3.5cm line).  Then fold the long edges of the connector back to meet at the line.

7. Topstitch using a 1/8″ (0.3cm) seam allowance around all four edges.

Repeat steps 1 – 7 for the remaining 3 faux leather (vinyl) pieces.
Continue with your Ingenious Tote pattern to install your handles and handle connectors.

finished1

You will notice that I also added the same faux leather (vinyl) to the side gusset and base of this bag, no changes need to be made to the pattern to do this (other than remembering to use clips instead of pins).

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial on how to make faux leather (vinyl) handle connectors for your Ingenious Tote.

I would love to see any Ingenious Tote Bags you make, so please feel free to share them with me via FB, IG, or T 🙂 or just use the tag #ingenioustote

If you would like to purchase the Ingenious Tote pattern, you can do so on Etsy or Craftsy.

If you do use this tutorial to make faux leather (vinyl) handle connectors for your Ingenious Tote feel free to use the tag #tutorialsbyemkie:)

I would love to stay in touch with you, so please sign up for my newsletter here.

Happy Sewing!
Emma

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5 Comments

  • Reply
    Robin Foldvik
    July 5, 2016 at 3:04 am

    Very nice! What do you use in the handle?

    • Reply
      EmkieDesigns
      July 5, 2016 at 3:36 am

      There is just fleece inside… the pattern goes though the steps on how to make the handles (with written instructions and photos 🙂 ) Glad you enjoyed the tutorial 🙂

  • Reply
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    August 2, 2016 at 10:24 am

    […] This is great when working with leather or vinyl.  You can not use pins with Leather or Vinyl and wonder clips (another favourite, but they didn’t make my top 5), only work when you can clip at the edge of the bag…but what if you need to overlay some vinyl or leather in the centre of a panel on your bag and said wonder clips can’t reach to hold it in position? Double sided tape to the rescue!  I love hemming tape in particular as it doesn’t gum up my needle, and once sewn you wouldn’t even know it was there😉 I also use double sided hemming tape to make these tassels and strap connectors. […]

  • Reply
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    September 27, 2016 at 7:16 pm

    […] vinyl/faux leather for your handle connectors, you might like to change how they are constructed to this method to ensure you have no raw edges. If you have used fabric, ensure when constructing the handle […]

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    December 7, 2016 at 8:35 pm

    […] How to make faux leather/vinyl handle connectors for your Ingenious Tote […]

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