We’re just under a month away from Valentine’s Day, and if you’re still looking for project ideas, today I have you covered! I used my trusty Cricut Maker to create this DIY girl’s heart purse tutorial, and you can make one too using your Maker and Cricut rotary blade! If you haven’t learned how to cut fabric with the Cricut Maker yet, now’s the time to get started with this fun DIY Valentine’s Day gift idea!
The best part? The Maker does all of the cutting work for us in this heart bag tutorial. From the fabric, to the interfacing, to the fusible fleece, the pieces are all cut with precision thanks to the rotary blade. I used two of my favorite lines for this purse, Chatsworth for Riley Blake and Blush by Dana Willard for Art Gallery. I couldn’t resist floral for the exterior – it reminds me of a baby version of our popular Free Heart Backpack Pattern!
And wow, my rotary blade has been busy lately. You can hop over here to see the scalloped zipper pouches I’m also sharing today, and get all the basic details (including a couple videos!) about my favorite tool over here.
As an added bonus, the Maker will even mark the pieces for us thanks to the washable fabric pen! This project doesn’t require a ton of markings, but it is so great to know that the ones that are needed are exactly where they need to be to make our sewing more efficient and enjoyable!
This little purse is perfect for toddlers through tweens – the strap is extra long so it can be tied in a knot for littler ones or left long for your older sweeties. And for more Valentine’s Day bag ideas, you can head over here!
To top off the sweet design, we’ll make an arrow zipper pull with one of my very favorite products to use with my Maker, Cricut genuine leather. I used a basic arrow shape from Design Space and used the weld tool to form it into a shape that could be used for a pull.
I used my favorite new technique that I also shared on our lip purse free pattern (how cute would these two purses be for siblings or little friends?!) for attaching the lining with this kind of zipper, and I think you’ll love it too! It’s easy to do and gives a nice clean finish that I love.
Ready to get started?
DIY Heart Purse Tutorial with the Cricut Maker Rotary Blade
Supplies: (affiliate links below)
Cricut Maker and rotary blade (you can find replacement blades here)
Cricut knife blade
fabric (main, lining and strap) – dimensions needed for each material are listed below
Cricut genuine leather
fusible lightweight interfacing – 1yd (20″ wide)
fusible fleece – 1/4yd (12×8″ piece)
Cricut fabric mat (12×24″): (if you have multiple fabric mats they’ll come in handy!)
Cricut StrongGrip Mat
Rotary cutter and mat
Cricut washable fabric pen
zipper: 6″ or longer non-separating
contact cement (formulated for leather)
key chain ring
Open the project in Design Space and click “Make It” in the top right corner after clicking through from the first screen. Change material size (excluding the leather mat), to 12×24″ to reduce the number of mat changes needed for mats of the same material that are split into two 12×12″ mats. Once that’s changed, there will be 7 total mats to be cut.
Use a rotary cutter and mat to cut each fabric to the dimensions below (the fabric mat can hold fabric up to 12″ wide, and I usually like to leave the fabric long and cut off the excess afterward to keep in my scrap pile, so the dimensions listed below are the minimums). Be sure to watch for directional prints as you’re cutting – the 12″ side should always be going across the print for this project.
(dimensions are width x length, colors refer to mat colors in Design Space, NOT to fabric colors)
Mat 1 (white): fusible lightweight interfacing – 12×24″
Mat 2 (white): fusible lightweight interfacing – 9×8″
Mat 3 (grey): fusible fleece – 12×8″
Mat 4 (pink): main fabric – 11×16″
Mat 5 (gold): leather – 7×2″
Mat 6 (orange): lining – 9×16″
Mat 7 (blue): strap (I used my main fabric) – 12×19″
Once you have your materials ready, it’s time to get cutting! Ensure you have the Cricut rotary blade installed in your Maker and grab your fabric mat(s) – they’re pink which makes it easy to find the right one! If you have multiple mats like I do, definitely use them as you can prepare the next material while one is cutting, and swap them out as each one is finished cutting. I like to have an assembly line ready with my 3 mats and it makes everything go so quickly!
Mat 1: Load the first material, fusible interfacing (larger piece), onto a mat. A great tip for getting the material smoothly on the mat is to roll it up, place the top edge on the mat, and then slowly roll it out while smoothing as you go. Make sure the interfacing is firmly on the mat and adjust the material setting to “fusible interfacing”. Follow the on-screen prompts to load your mat and let the Maker start cutting! Once it’s done, unload the mat and remove the excess interfacing, revealing the precisely cut pieces.
Repeat the steps for mats 2-4, paying attention to the material setting changes as noted in each screenshot.
Mat 4: This mat requires the washable fabric pen as well, so insert that in the Maker next to the rotary blade before cutting.
For this mat, I was short on fabric – I didn’t have enough width needed to cut the fabric as Design Space layed it out, so I clicked “edit” and adjusted it by shifting the bottom piece down (so I could have a split in the fabric pieces without worry that the rotary blade would need to cut there), and moved the zipper tabs below as well. It worked like a charm!
For Mat 5 you’ll need to swap out the rotary blade for the knife blade. If you’d like, you can skip ahead and cut Mat 6 and 7 first (just click on the Mat 6/7 image in Design Space) so you won’t have to swap out your blade twice, but otherwise remove the rotary blade and install the knife blade to cut the leather.
Place the leather good side down on a StrongGrip Mat and tape the edges down with masking tape. Move the star wheels to the right before cutting. Once cut, remove the negative leather. I never get tired of seeing the perfectly detailed cuts!
Mat 6: *Remember to re-install the rotary blade if you cut Mat 5 (leather with the knife blade) with your last mat.
Great job! Now that the Maker has done all of the cutting work, it’s time to fuse the interfacing to each corresponding main fabric piece. The interfacing pieces are a bit smaller than the main pieces for easy fusing. I like to use my EasyPress 2 because it fuses the interfacing so quickly and evenly – it’s a serious interfacing game changer and takes all of the annoyance out of getting each area of the interfacing fused to the fabric (you know what I’m talking about, right?).
Next, fuse the fusible fleece to the interfacing on the main fabric pieces, centering on all edges (to keep the fleece out of the seam allowances, the pieces are approximately 1/2″ smaller on all sides. I use my EasyPress 2 for this step as well, but after placing the fleece, I flip the fabric and fleece over and press from the fabric right side to avoid melting the fleece.
Now that our pieces are all cut, it’s time to get sewing!
If your zipper is longer than 6″, measure and mark it 6″ from the top stop.
Place one zipper tab right sides together with zipper, with edge of zipper tab 1/2″ from top zipper stop. Stitch tab to zipper, 1/2″ from edge of tabs – you’ll be stitching right next to the top zipper top but be careful to not stitch through it! Press zipper tab away from top stop. Repeat with remaining tab, aligning stitch line with 6″ mark on zipper. Trim zipper ends (do not cut tabs).
Sandwich zipper between front bottom main fabric and lining, with zipper and main fabric RST. Zipper tabs will extend past edges, and zipper should be centered along top of bottom piece.
Pin together, matching straight raw edges of main fabric and lining with edge of zipper tape. Stitch along pinned edge, 1/4″ from raw edges.
Place wrong sides of main fabric and lining together and press flat along seam.
Repeat steps above to attach opposite edge of zipper tape to front top main fabric and lining. Trim corners at zipper tabs to follow shape of back piece.
To make strap, stitch all three strap pieces together along short ends. Press seam allowances open.
Fold strap piece in half, matching long edges, and press. Fold each long raw edge to center and press.
Fold strap back along pressed lines and press. Topstitch close to each long edge.
Place straps horizontally as marked on back main piece and baste in place. Trim overhanging corners of strap ends.
Open zipper. Did you open the zipper? Good, then let’s move on… Right sides together, pin and stitch main fabrics front and back together around outside edge. Strap can hang out of zipper while stitching – be sure to not get it caught in stitches.
Is your zipper still open? Great, it should be! Place back lining and front linings right sides together and stitch around outside edge, leaving 3″ gap in stitches along one side. I find it easiest to allow the strap to hang out at the opening to reduce bulk while stitching. Trim seam allowances and corners, leaving seam allowances at opening untrimmed.
Press lining back seam allowance 1/2″ toward wrong side, curving to follow lining front stitch line.
Turn front and back lining right sides out through opening. Use ladder stitch or other invisible stitch to hand stitch opening closed (this is where the seam allowance pressing you did earlier is a big help).
Turn main fabrics right side out through zipper (because you left it open ;)) and press bag flat along outer edge. Tie strap in a knot at top if desired (perfect for my 4 year old to wear cross body, but an 8+ year old will likely need the full length to wear the purse cross body).
To make our leather arrow zipper pull, grab your contact cement and find a well ventilated area and some cardboard or paper to work on.
The middle straight portion of the arrows will be the loop to thread on the keychain, so we’re going to apply contact cement to all of the back of the piece except that middle portion. Be careful not to get any cement on the right side of the leather, and to follow manufacturer’s instructions if they differ from mine. Allow the cement to dry for a few minutes, until tacky.
Fold the piece wrong sides together (be careful, you only get one chance to stick them together!), matching all edges. Place under some books or other flat heavy objects while it dries.
Once dry (usually a good 24hr), thread the loop onto the key chain and the key chain onto the zipper pull.
Great job on finishing our DIY Heart Purse Tutorial! Now that you’ve learned how to cut fabric with the Cricut Maker, go ahead and fill it with some special treats for a special little someone in your life! It will be the perfect DIY Valentine’s gift that keeps giving all year long!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.