So the flex frames have been a bit of a hit... but the most commonly asked question is "How do you use them?".... This afternoon I pulled out a scrap of pattern card and did this.
The bottom shape was just drawn freehand. You could make it any shape you want - oblong, square, completely abstract... as long as the top section is 4.5 x 8.4mm (give or take a mm). Fold the card in half and cut the shape out.
Cut 2 pieces of felt from this shape.
When I made the scarlet purse (in the top picture) I used beautiful Winterwood wool felt, so I only needed these outside purse pieces. With this burgundy purse I wanted to test cheap acrylic felt squares (from Spotlight). This felt is weak and thin, so I folded down the top 2.5cm of the pattern piece and cut two lining pieces in a contrast colour.
Using basting spray, stick the lining to the outside purse pieces.
Do some simple embellishment...
As simple as you like...
And as quick as you like...
Using the top of the lining as a folding edge, turn the top of the purse over. Give it a gentle press with steam so that it sits very flat.
Stitch the turning down to create an open-ended casing at the top of each purse piece. The backtacking at each end must be very secure here.
The two pieces are then stitched together (right side out) about 4mm from the edge - again with super-secure backtacking.
You can then either trim the edges with straight scissors (so that all the layers are level) or use pinking shears. Alternatively, this could all be lovingly handstitched - or blanket-stitched by machine - and there would be no need to trim edges at all.
Thread the frame through the casings at the top of the purse.
Line up the open end pieces and push the hinge pin in....
...and fold over the ends of the hinge to hold the pin in place. Use pliers, the sides of your scissors or whatever works to fold these ends over. (I'm yet to find my ultimate hinge-closing tool!).
Admire your purse....
...and squeeze it to open and close it.
Cute huh? And really quick. Quicker than it took me to write this tutorial.
A quick note on the frames: We've had to add a little packing surcharge on the single frames (it's those itty-bitty pins that take all the time!). The single frames are now $3.90 each (CODE: FLEX90) or a packet of 5 for $18.15 (CODE: FLEX90/5).