Sallie Tomato Faux Leather Tour

Today we have the pleasure of having a guest blogger, Christy Headings!  She's one of our lovely customers with 6 years of bag making experience!  We are thrilled to have her today.

When I was asked by So Sew English Fabrics to participate in the Sallie Tomato Faux Leather Tour, I was nervous but also extremely excited and grateful! I chose to sew Holly and am going to show you how I did it...a sew-a-long, so to speak!

I had options for 2 bags picked out but could only choose one for now (be on the lookout for the other one soon).

 Here are the fabrics, faux leather and hardware I chose:

  • Main fabric is Navy Chevron Double Brushed Poly from So Sew English Fabrics
  • Navy Pebble Faux Leather from Sallie Tomato
  • Lining fabric is Ruby Star Society Tiger Fly Brushed Metallic Pale Peach from Sallie Tomato
  • Sallie Tomato Holly Hardware Kit in gunmetal

*Just a little note about the faux leather: it is so pliable, easy to work with, it is very affordable and makes a beautiful bag!*

Let's start sewing!  *quick disclaimer-sometimes I don't sew each step in the same order as the pattern or leave steps out to suit my style*

Cut the fabric and interfacing per the pattern. I wanted to use the knit fabric I used for the main as my strap but knit is too thick so it needs to be backed with woven. My finished strap is 4” x 58”, to accomplish that I cut the dbp at 2.25” x 58” and the woven typically isn’t as wide as knit so you need 2 pieces that are 2.25” x 30”


Making the strap (this is where I go out of order because it’s my least favorite part): Lay the 2 woven pieces right sides together like this
Sew them together diagonally, trim off excess and topstitch.
Place the main and woven right sides together and sew down one long side using full seam allowance. Open it up and press your seam open. 
Fold both short ends in ½” and press. Now you will fold each long edge into the center, pressing as you go. Fold the entire strap over to enclose the raw edges, press and clip in place to keep from sliding
Topstitch the open side first then flip over and topstitch the closed side.
Add the slider to one end-you can use a rivet or simply stitch it...I chose a rivet for this one
YOUR STRAP IS NOW DONE! Set it aside for the last step
Strap anchors are made the same way you did the strap, except you don’t need to fold in the short edges because they will be sewn into the purse.
Attach the faux leather accent pieces to the main pieces. I like to lengthen my stitch to 3.5 when I topstitch faux leather or vinyl and I switch to a teflon foot. However, after I did this step I tested out my regular foot on this faux leather and it worked perfectly and never got stuck (this is huge!)!!! Topstitch all the way around but be sure to go slow around the curves.
Install the magnetic snap (I left out the vinyl circle backing). Fold your lining pieces in half and mark the center at top and bottom ~this will come in handy later~. Measure down 1.5” in the exact center, place a small mark that will be the center of your snap. I like to place my snap over that and mark the prongs so I make sure to cut the right spot, then I also mark the prongs on a piece of peltex or something else strong to stabilize the snap. Use small scissors to cut tiny slits on your prong marks and add your snap. Place your stabilizer on the back then add the washer that came with your snap and fold the prongs down.
Making the slip pocket:  Place your 2 pocket pieces right sides together and stitch together along the top edge only. Flip so they are wrong sides together and topstitch. Draw a line down the center. Lay it on top of one of your lining pieces and baste in place along the sides and bottom. Now you will sew down the center line you drew, make sure to backstitch at the top of the pocket.

Zipper Pocket

First you are going to draw your zipper box on one pocket lining piece. Find the center and draw a box that is 6.5” x .5”. Attach that piece to your other lining piece 2.5” from the top, make sure they are right sides together. Stitch all the way around.

I like to draw a triangle in the corners to guide my cutting. Use the smallest scissors you can find to cut into the corners, get as close as you can to the stitches but DO NOT snip the thread! After you do the corners switch to regular scissors to cut the length of the box. Once it is cut, push your lining through the opening to the back (your fabrics will now be wrong sides together).

Attach your zipper from the backside, I like to use wonder tape to hold it in place! Topstitch all the way around.TIP: your zipper foot helps you get very close to the edge!

Take your second pocket lining piece and place right sides together with the piece you just completed. You want to leave most of the bottom open for turning the bag later. Start at one bottom corner and sew up the side, across the top, down the other side and stop a little into the other bottom corner. Tip: I find it easier to sew around the pocket with the pocket pieces down and the body of the purse on top, then just flip it out of the way!  Clip your bottom corners and trim any excess zipper off. OPEN YOUR ZIPPER. Your pocket is done!


Gusset time! I am just going to tell you again how nice the Sallie Tomato faux leather is...I have used a lot of vinyls and faux leathers and have never been able to sew it this easily!!!

Place your two EXTERIOR gusset pieces right sides together and sew, then press your seam open and topstitch both sides of the seam.

Follow the gusset steps on the pattern(for both exterior and lining) to cut both sides so they have tapered ends.

Main Body of Bag

Creating the main part of your bag: The process will be the same for both the exterior and the lining!

Find the center bottoms on all 4 of your main pieces and both gusset pieces

Take one exterior main piece and the exterior gusset piece- match up the center bottom, then match up the top edges on both sides, clip in place all the way around. Sew around the edge using the full seam allowance, go carefully around the curves and push any bumps out of the way as you go. Make sure to backstitch the start and stop.

Attach the 2nd exterior piece the same way and stitch. This side is trickier since there are more layers to work with so take it slow!

*Repeat with the lining*

Clip your curves and trim seam allowance to reduce bulk. Flip the exterior only right side out, the lining needs to stay inside out.

Center your strap anchors (with rectangle rings attached) on each side of the exterior gusset and baste in place.


Place your exterior inside the lining so they are right sides together and clip around the top. Sew with your full seam allowance all the way around the top edge.

Pull the entire bag through the zipper pocket. Reach inside and push out all edges so it looks nice from the outside

Sew your pocket closed.

Tuck the lining down inside the exterior and topstitch around the top.

Attach the adjustable strap

Pull your strap through the rectangle ring on the right side.

This part is hard to explain (I hope the pictures help)! Take the end that you just pulled through and weave it through the slider that you attached earlier.

Now take that end to the other rectangle ring, you want to make sure you loop it around from the outside to the inside so that your end is toward the inside of the purse.

Topstitch or add a rivet

Your Beautiful Holly is complete!!!

I appreciate you all for being here to sew with me and can’t wait to see your projects! Here is a picture of my daughter being silly while modeling my Holly!

Thank you to Sallie Tomato and So Sew English for inviting me to join the faux leather tour!

If you loved this weeks post take a tour around the entire Sallie Tomato faux leather blog tour!

Monday 5/25 Hilary at
Tuesday 5/26 Isabelle at
Wednesday 5/27 Eileen at
Thursday 5/28 Reen at
Friday 5/29 Linds at
Saturday 5/30 Marisa at
Sunday 5/31 Christy at
Monday 6/1 Karie at
Tuesday 6/2 Charlotte at
Wednesday 6/3 Kate at
Thursday 6/4 Sue at
Friday 6/5 Elizabeth at
Saturday 6/6 Vanessa at
Sunday 6/7 Cecilia at
Monday 6/8 Cristy at
Tuesday 6/9 Sarah at
Wednesday 6/10 Ellen at

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