How to make a cork purse

Step up your sewing game and try something new with Lou Orth’s tutorial for a mini cork purse.

how to make a purse

Team Mollie are big fans of cork accessories so we’ve got all the heart eyes for this mini cork purse, which is hard-wearing enough to survive even the most junk-filled handbag. Cork is a super versatile material (we’ve got everything from cork planters to DIY cork boards here on Gathered) and is really affordable too. Lou’s cork purse pattern is lined with bright floral fabric to add a splash of colour but you could also use it as a business card holder, impressing people with both your skills and your craft smarts at the same time. This adorable little cork purse is also a great stash buster project too because it’s small enough to use up scraps of fabric and cork. Whip up a whole bunch of these mini cork purses and gift them to all your friends and family. We think little ones will love this as their first purse too, it’s small enough for tiny hands and pocket money!

Lou sourced her cork leather from www.frameyourbag.etsy.com. Once you’ve punched a hole in it with a needle or pin it won’t disappear, so take it slowly when sewing, and use binding clips to hold your fabrics together. If you’re new to the world of sewing don’t worry you can still use Lou’s cork purse pattern. Head over to our sewing for beginners and how to use a sewing machine guides to help you master stitching.

how to make a purse

You’ll need

  • Cork leather, 12.5 x 20.5cm (5 x 81/8“)
  • Cotton lawn fabric, 12.5 x 20.5cm (5 x 81/8“) (we used Dashwood Studios Cotton Candy in Tulip)
  • Fabric marker
  • Rotary cutter
  • Ruler
  • Cutting mat
  • Binding clips
  • One pair of heart-shaped Kam Snaps, 1cm (3/8“) diameter
  • Snap pliers

How to make a cork purse

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You Will Need

  • Cork
  • Fabric
  • Cutting mat

Total time:

Step 1

how to make a purse step 1

Measure and mark the centre point along one short edge on the wrong side (WS) of your cork leather. Mark 4cm (15/8“) down on either side from the top edge, then repeat with the cotton lawn.

Step 2

how to make a purse step 2

Line up your ruler along the centre mark and one side mark on the cork, then cut along the line. Repeat with the mark on the other side to create a point, then repeat to create a point on the cotton.

Step 3

how to make a purse step 3

With right sides (RS) together, sew the cork and cotton using a 1cm (3/8“) seam allowance, leaving a 5cm (2”) gap along one long edge. Trim the seam allowance at the corners, then turn through to the right side, pushing out the corners using a knitting needle or similar.

Step 4

how to make a purse step 4

Top stitch around the outside of the purse, roughly 0.5cm (¼”) in from the edge, making sure to neatly close the gap for turning when you sew over it.

Step 5

how to make a purse step 5

Fold the bottom edge up to the WS by 6.5cm (25/8“) and clip either side to hold in place as shown. Top stitch over your previous line of stitching along either side of the purse to secure.

Step 6

how to make a purse step 6

Attach your press snap top to the middle of the point on the flap using the pliers. Position the bottom of the snap centrally on the front of the purse, roughly (1¼”) up, closing the purse to check the placement before you attach it.

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Cork purse complete! May your pennies never be lost again. For more cute purse patterns check out our 30+ crochet purse patterns along with our macrame purse tutorial.

Meet the Maker

Lou is a self-confessed fabric addict from Oxfordshire. Sewing is her passion, and she blogs about her projects and inspiration, as well as posting tutorials. You’ll also find pics of her makes on Instagram @louorthdesigns