PPC8- Leather Me Up


I know I mentioned in our last post in this series, that now it was time for me to crank out a few more show-quality samples.


smLeather1 I generally try to work up 6-8 show-worthy samples of a new design for two reasons:

  1. There’s usually a distributor or two that wants to display a sample in their booth and it’s to my advantage to supply one if I can!
  2. Some customers have a difficult time picturing a bag any other way than in the fabric in which it’s presented, so it’s to my advantage to make up samples in a WIDE variety of fabrics and colors for the website as well as for shows.

So… with this in mind,

by now I’m either looking for unusual fabrics to use,  (in terms of fabric type, color or print), or I’m trolling for fabrics making their debut at Market to take advantage of the cross-promotion thing!
I’ve got some yardage coming from a couple of fabric houses I normally work with, but it’s sometimes not ready to ship until very close to Market, so I thought I’d check through my stash and see if I had anything that fit the bill there, and that’s when I remembered that I had this delicious leather-looking material!

(You might remember that I used this material already in a Boho Baguette sample and it actually has turned out to be one of the more popular show bags ever!)

I have no idea where or when I bought it. Seems like its been in my stash FOREVER. I have no clue what it’s made of because there’s no selvage printing… heck, there not even a selvage to print anything on!

BUT- I can tell you what it’s not.

It’s not vinyl. I can press either side of this fabric at pretty high temps with no ill effects.

It’s not stiff. This fabric is soft and VERY pliable.

It’s EASY to sew with. It doesn’t stick to itself and it doesn’t fray at all.


The only thing I know for sure is that I’d really like to have a couple more yards of it. It seems to be just about as durable as real leather but with none of the unpleasant aspects of actually trying to make a bag with leather.

Maybe someone out there can identify this magical fabric for us?

That would be terrific, but in the meantime, let’s talk about this finished sample a bit.

I paired the brown “leatherette” with a leftover print and a couple of turquoise fat quarters for the interior lining. I can imagine that this Cosmo, made in this magical fabric would be especially durable over the long haul, making it terrific to use as a travel bag.



And this time, rather than trim the edge of the Pocket Flap as I’ve done up to now, I thought I might try just piping the edge and you know what? I kinda like this look. In particular, it seems to suit this particular bag exterior especially well, don’t you think?

So….now it’s YOUR turn!

Do you have any questions or comments about this sample?

And have any of YOU ever used this type of fabric in a handbag?
Because you need to know that we actually LOVE comments, so please feel free to leave any you might have in the space provided below and stay tuned for our next post in this series!

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13 Comments So Far, You're Next!

  1. It’s hard to see the grain exactly in the photo but looks like it could be from the line of alova suedes at JoAnn fabrics. They also have a couple of really great imitation leathers in the home deck section in our store that work up great in bags. Very supple.

  2. Love the purse pattern …Love the colors and would love to know the leather-type of material too !

  3. I really like the look of the piping with this fabric! It looks great!

  4. Looks very smart and sturdy. Ready for years of travel. Love the piping too.

  5. I have NO idea what the fabric is, but I love how it looks with the blue trim………..great. !!! good show !!! anita in Kernersville

  6. The piping on the flap is awesome! Definitely a more “commercial” appearance.
    Love it.

  7. Kathy, I was so happy to see that you use leather-look fabric. Thumbs up to you!

    But I love the looks of that fabric and would definitely like to know what it is and where you got it. I know most suede’s and fabric at JoAnn fabrics you can’t really iron so I am sceptical on that, but you never know. I have not bought all JoAnn fabrics for sure.

    The bags are insane looking. Anyone would be proud to carry either one of them!

    • I agree Donna
      Whatever this is, i can defintely iron it and it takes a press pretty well. For sure I keep the iron moving at all times, but I’ve never ever had a problem with melting etc.
      I really wish I could remember where I got it, because not its all GONE! 🙁

  8. Love it, I really would buy all ready made in this fabric.

  9. i like the piping. Material reminds me of homedec microfiber.
    I have some vinyl in similar color and been thinking about using on this bag. This way it would be water proof/ rain proof) since i love using back packs. and this bag is so much more.
    And i always like that color combination (actually are my bedroom colors).

  10. I think it could be waxed cotton.