Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Making Hermione's beaded bag

Kate asked me to make her a beaded bag for her Hermione costume, and of course I agreed to that before I had searched the web for pictures of Hermione and her bag.  And then gulped.  It was looking like a lot of work!  I found some fabric in a local charity shop and (as she knew) already have a large quantity of beads and threads, and decided that instead of making it in segments as some other crafters have done, I would make a circular design bag and add sections of velvet to that. 

Making a circle with pen, thread and drawing pin
I started with a large square of fabric, and used a pen on a string to make a circle of the required dimensions.  I then made another circle in a contrasting fabric for the lining, and sewed the two together, right sides out. I made a channel for the strings for the bag by sewing two circles about an inch or so apart, and cut a hole in the fabric to let me thread them through.

I started to bead and embroider velvet sections to go onto the bag - one of the youtubers who demonstrated their bought bag online kindly told me that the "official" facsimile bag has eight sections of velvet material and so I made those separately, and then sewed them onto the bag.

Once all the velvet sections were sewn onto the bag I began to embroider between the sections.  On the official bag these sections seem to be quite crude straight embroidery, but I made mine a bit more magical with swirls and spirals.

I beaded every other one - I was beginning to worry about the weight of the bag, which is bigger than the facsimile and of a heavier more sturdy material.

I made a base plate out of cardboard covered with fabric and joined a tassel to the middle of that and embroidered it.  I had a lot of problems working out how to attach it.  From looking at the facsimile I think the sections are gathered a bit before being attached to the base plate, but that looked terrible, so I just went for a straightforward attachment.

I'm leaving the silken cords very long for the moment.  Kate is coming to stay tomorrow, and so I will check with her to see how long she'd ideally like them.  Apart from some extra beading around the baseplate and the edge, I think it is more or less done!

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