Make a Bag Worth Bragging About!

Honey Katy frontI love this bag!  This is my ‘doggie bag’, which I made using fabric sheets and my inkjet printer.

Have you considered making a little handbag of photo treasures? It’s easier than you might think, it’s a great way to carry photos with you, and the bag is sure to be a conversation starter where ever you go. I used pictures of my dog Honey and her sister Sweetie for this example. Sweetie lives next door and the girls get together for play dates.  This is Honey taking a snooze.

I used one of our free project sheets that work with a number of our designs. I’ve prepared an idea sheet to use with fabric printer sheets and Microsoft Word to create your Brag Bag.

Click here for a printable version of this free tutorial.

I used our Katy Bags pattern #121 and letter-sized cotton fabric printer sheets. The project sheet includes directions on how to use the text box function in Microsoft Word to locate photos where you like.  You can use any bag design and incorporate your own treasures into the construction.

I decided to make this project to take with me for my trip to Tokyo, Japan, in May 2005.  When I had visited the year before, a number of people shared pictures of their pets via their cell phone camera. I decided that carrying Honey and Sweetie around with me would be a great ice-breaker – and it was.

On one evening, Carolyn and I went shopping at the mall. We walked into a store called ‘The Dog Depot’ and I held-up my purse for the staff to see. I was accepted as a dog-lover immediately.

Honey Katy

Here’s the back of the doggie bag. I had so many pictures that it was hard to choose.  So I used a bunch of little pictures.  I love the big picture in the middle of Honey and Sweetie sticking their noses between the rails of the deck at Sweetie’s house. Sweetie is on the left, Honey is sticking her tongue out. I placed small pictures of the girls all around the big center picture.

To get started, I first made any adjustments to the photos in my photo program.  I resized, cropped, rotated, etc.  Then I used the text box function to locate photos all over the print area.  The idea sheet includes step-by-step directions for working with Microsoft Word text boxes for photo placement. The handle shown is one of a pair offered by Clover, item #6333.

Electric Quilt Premium Cotton Satin Inkjet Fabric Sheets

I really like the feel of the cotton satin finish injet fabric sheets from The Electric Quilt Company. Here’s what the package looks like. They have a fabulous finish and a little more body than your basic cotton sheet. This will give your project a ‘richness’ with fabulous drape. I especially like the plastic backing which pulls off easily in one try and does not tear like the paper backing on other products.  I’ve had problems with the paper back ripping off in pieces, leaving little shards that are difficult to remove.

The cotton satin printer sheets from EQ are item #P-CS811, six sheets to a pack with good instructions. Visit EQ’s blog for tons of info.


Lazy Girl Designs

[tags]fabric printer sheets, small handbag, purse pattern, photo transfer[/tags]

Product image courtesy of The Electric Quilt Company.

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77 Responses to “Make a Bag Worth Bragging About!”

  1. Cheryl — December 5, 2006 @ 9:27 am

    Joan, now that I’ve seen the candid shots of Honey, I remember where I’ve seen her! I loved this idea when I first saw it, and definitely need to get a Darcy bag made ASAP.

  2. Rocky — January 23, 2007 @ 2:31 pm

    Absolutely adorable!

  3. Mary Baker — January 23, 2007 @ 6:30 pm


  4. jan l smith — March 28, 2007 @ 9:03 am

    i greally cute idea and grandparents pix is another great one for lil one brag bags. maybe call it grammy’s brag bags! that mite b a great idea . i just wanted to state it was a nice idea. jan

  5. Lisa Franklin — March 16, 2008 @ 5:29 am

    Oh dear me! Make that little one black instead of silver and you’ve got our baby girl, Brie!!! Your purse is fabulous!!!

    Would look great with Brie on the front and her older brother (our Devon Rex, Rebel) would look grand on the back. Then it would be “reversible”!!

    Brie is the only poodle I know who washes her face. She learned from watching our two Devons wash their faces, but no front paws for her. She licks her hind foot and then rubs her face and repeats the process till she’s satisfied she’s clean enough. And Rebel washes her face, too, although occasionally he’ll get his tongue hung up in the long hair from one of her ears! LOL!!

    They’re not spoiled, we’re just well trained.

    Thanks for the great idea!

    Lisa in Louisiana

  6. Margi Borck — March 16, 2008 @ 6:36 am

    I just love your puppy bag! I so need to do something like that to show off my Sadie Mae (golden retriever who thinks she is a human) and Medusa (cat who thinks she’s a dog and human). LOL My animals are just like children to me, love them completely and totally. Off to investigate how to get them on a bag for myself! Thanks for the great ideas.

  7. Lisa Yoder — March 16, 2008 @ 7:21 am

    Hi, This would be great we just had a litter of puppies and I love to show off baby pictures. Thanks for the instructions..

  8. Pat — March 16, 2008 @ 7:26 am

    Well…if that isn’t the greatest idea! Maybe if I put my pup Pepi’s photo on a bag, he’d not sit on or burrow under my fabric (which is what he’ll try to do when I’m sitting and working on something!!!!) I love your designs and have done some of them. Keep up the good work!

  9. Sheri — March 16, 2008 @ 7:29 am

    love the doggie bag, would love to do one with my doggie. we have a good neighbor doggie that would be really cute there too. Very fun idea.

  10. Cindy Dickinson — March 16, 2008 @ 7:29 am

    Oh, I would love the purse with my cutie pie on it. Max the cat is very photogenic, and I have tons of cute pics. I am so glad Pat sent us to your blog!

  11. Rhonda Phillips — March 16, 2008 @ 7:31 am

    Love the bags! I don’t have any furry friends unless you count the cattle!

  12. pat sloan — March 16, 2008 @ 7:41 am

    How super cute is SHE!!! I miss my doggies so much!! What fun to have you join my ‘road trip’… thanks Joan!!

  13. Becky in Georgia — March 16, 2008 @ 7:51 am

    This is beyond cute! The picture of Honey just jumps off the page. Thanks for the recommendation of the EQ sheets for projects. I didn’t know they made one. Found your blog from Pat Sloan’s National Quilting Day posts. Thanks for participating with us!


  14. Meri — March 16, 2008 @ 7:58 am

    Tres adorable! How would my two crazy dogs, Moose and Rowdy, ever sit still for a photo? They wouldn’t! But maybe the cats…Penelope and Slinky just might! They’re always ready for a photo op!
    Thanks for all the tips on the printer sheets…another project to try!

  15. Monica — March 16, 2008 @ 8:01 am

    Love the bag! I had 3 furry friends and am down to one. Maybe I can find a pic of the queen, Chili, and make a cute bag to remember her by! 😉 I also have a friend who is a dog rescuer….she might like a bag also! Love it Love it Love it!

  16. carolyn clark — March 16, 2008 @ 8:02 am

    There is no doubt that i am a dog lover…..i have five of them
    but i also have a parrotlet and she would look great on a purse too!
    She is green so she would go with everything lol
    Found your blog from the Pat Sloan group….interesting

  17. lindabee — March 16, 2008 @ 8:10 am

    Love the purse. DD is a dog lover and a vet. Will have to try it for her. Also found your blog through Pat Sloan

  18. Christine Gibbons — March 16, 2008 @ 8:12 am

    Just love the purse. My daughter would love one to showcase her wonderful puppy Chester who is a shitzu/poodle. What a great idea

  19. Bobbie Bentneedle — March 16, 2008 @ 8:15 am

    Pat Sloan’s Road Trips lead us to the most marvelous places. I really enjoyed your tips about printing on fabric, and the pictures of your furry friends. I’m thinking that I need to make one of these for my MiL for Mother’s Day, featuring our Boxer, Ginger, and her miniature poodle, Toby – they have a lot of fun on their “Play Days” just as Honey and Sweetie do. Ginger loves to stay with “Grandma” and “Uncle Toby” – and since Toby weighs 5 lbs to Ginger’s 70 lbs, there’s usually a photo op in there somewhere!

  20. Sarah Doty — March 16, 2008 @ 8:18 am

    What a cool purse. I love all of your patterns. Thanks for participating with the Sloanie group in our virtual retreat. I have the greatest picture of my brother and my childhood dog, Rusty, both looking down at a game board. It is so funny because they look like they are playing the game. That would look great on a purse!

  21. Myra Stuart — March 16, 2008 @ 8:27 am

    I read your blog every update and loved this bag the first time I saw it. I searched for your patterns on my outings yesterday and could only find the Gracie Bag – need to visit your website, my Lola would look great on a bag. :o)

  22. Jennifer — March 16, 2008 @ 8:39 am

    Very nice! I have four dogs that would look adorable on it too! Something to try…..thanks!

  23. Mary — March 16, 2008 @ 8:40 am

    Oh, I love that purse. What a wonderful idea and I have a perfect picture for that project. Love your site and visit it often. Mary

  24. Jean — March 16, 2008 @ 8:47 am

    Hi Joan
    LOVE your little doggie bag! And Honey is so darn cute!
    I am on your yahoo group, and also a Sloanie.
    We have three cats in our home. Sammy is an orange tabby and is diabetic. I give him insulin shots twice a day, but he is doing well. Felicity is a very fluffy, loving and BIG calico, and Molly is a white/caramel one eyed sweetheart. She was hit by a car when she was a kitten. She belonged to my mom, but we took her in when Mom passed away last year.

  25. Amanda — March 16, 2008 @ 8:48 am

    I love this bag, and the picture is so adorable!

    I rescued my dog, Sookie, on a quilting retreat at a convent. How funny is that? The Sisters loved the dog, but they really needed someone to take her home. We had been wanting a dog, but I really wanted one that would be free. There was a real devine intervention when Sookie came into our lives.

    I rescued my cat, Izzie, too. Two of my cats went mysteriously missing. My neighbor knew that I was having a hard time with it, especially when I went chasing her cat because I thought she was mine. The next day Jennifer brought a cat to me from her dad’s farm. Someone had dropped him off and all her dad was feeding him was cornbread and bologna. He tried, I guess.

    My best friends kids gave her a purse with all 8 of her grandchildren on the front. They paid a lot of money for it from a professional photographer. Everywhere we go people stop her about her purse. It’s so sweet! Now I can make me some with my real kids, my grandkids, and my furry kids!

    Thanks, too,for telling us about the EQ printable sheets.

    I visited you yesterday from another blog, and today Pat Sloan sent us your way! Thanks for participating in the retreat!

  26. Michele — March 16, 2008 @ 8:49 am

    I don’t have any pets at the moment but I have three granddogs, the purses are GREAT gifts. Love your purses…….

  27. Sandy C. — March 16, 2008 @ 8:54 am

    I love the pics of your babies on the purses! I definitely need to do that with my two boxers. Except maybe I would need to make a tote bag to be able to see all of them! 🙂

  28. Karey herriman — March 16, 2008 @ 8:56 am

    Love the purses, Pat Sloan sent me and I am so glad she did. I have 4 cats that allow us to reside in our house with them. We are convinced that they let us stay due to our having thumbs so that we can open food cans and start fires. Have a great day.

  29. Julie Drennan — March 16, 2008 @ 9:00 am

    Hey Joan – There’s light at the end of the washing machine tunnel! Serena’s responding to the new medicine. We might even risk an Easter vacation East after all.

  30. Darlis Johns — March 16, 2008 @ 9:01 am

    Don’t have any pets.
    Am enjoying Pat Sloan’s retreat.
    Love your bags.

  31. Patti Levine — March 16, 2008 @ 9:02 am

    Pat Sloan’s Road Trip sent me here and how adorable! I have 2 dogs and 5 cats and would love to “take” them with me everywhere on a bag. Great idea!

  32. Barbara Drake — March 16, 2008 @ 9:07 am

    Love the doggy bag, I’d like to make one with pics of all the dogs I’ve ever had. Thanks for the great ideas. The road trips Pat has been sending us in are such fun.
    Barb D

  33. Debbie NY — March 16, 2008 @ 9:07 am

    I love my cats. We have mama cat and her son abner. We got them from the shelter. They are as different as day and night. I love your purse patterns I have quite a few of them. Well off to sewing. Have a great day. Debbie NY

  34. Sharon Griffith — March 16, 2008 @ 9:10 am

    Wow I just love the little poodle you have there on your purse. I have a pomerian that would also look cute on one. Thanks for the tutorial. This is my road trip from Pat’s but I have been here many times before that…

  35. Diane — March 16, 2008 @ 9:11 am

    I so love your purse!!! It would be a big hit in the Horse World, too. I own two horses, an amazing pet goat, three cats, (one is a barn wonder), and a dog. I am very intrigued with the idea, and would love to give it a try. I have a lousy printer, but might entice a friend into printing for me 🙂 I’m so glad Pat Sloan sent me here, your blog is a treasure of information! I’m hooked!! Diane

  36. Brenda Travis — March 16, 2008 @ 9:17 am

    My what a beautiful bag and baby !!!!! My in laws were poddle lovers but they had teacups ( I think that it what they were called ) Really cute dogs !!! Yours is so sweet. I would take her home in a minute.
    Well have great day !!!

  37. Karen Martin — March 16, 2008 @ 9:17 am

    No pets but I’m an avid bird watcher. This is my favorite time of year–you never know what is going to stop at the feeder on the way through the area!

  38. Denny Shaw — March 16, 2008 @ 9:24 am

    I have no pets of my own, but do have one granddog and two grandcats. Does that count?

    Denny Shaw

  39. dottie — March 16, 2008 @ 9:26 am

    Absolutely adorable. Will have to think seriously about this one as DD has a cutie.

    So much fun.

    sewing with a smile, dottie

  40. Susan — March 16, 2008 @ 9:27 am

    Joan, what a cool idea! Now I could take my Sophie Tucker with me everywhere I go! And since she is getting very, very old, it will become a very special bag. Thanks for the great idea! susan

  41. Charlotte — March 16, 2008 @ 9:40 am

    Thanks a lot, Joan, for sending us to Pat’s site, already spent some money there!! Love the picture of your pooch on the bag. Will need to make one with “Ruby’s” picture for my daughter.

  42. Regina — March 16, 2008 @ 9:40 am

    If I could get my two kitties to sit still – and together – for a picture they would look great on a bag. But alas they are not cooperative!

  43. sharonmassena — March 16, 2008 @ 9:42 am

    I have Eclectus parrots and people are frequently asking me what they look like. You’ve just given me a brilliant idea. No more explaining,

  44. Nancy — March 16, 2008 @ 9:44 am

    That purse is tooooooo cute!! Maybe I will do this with my grandchildren… I don’t think Oliver (our Cocker ) will sit still long enough to have his photo taken….

  45. Sequana — March 16, 2008 @ 9:48 am

    Well, my family nickname is Honey, so I’m not sure how I feel about all this…..*L*

    However, I still want to be in the Sloanie drawing. I use EQ Printables too, btw.

  46. Gayle Grier — March 16, 2008 @ 9:54 am

    Hello Joan…love this bag as well as your others. I’ve made several and find the instructions easy to follow and result in perfection! I will have to try this to show off my kitties. Thanks for joining Pat’s quilt retreat!

    Gayle in TN

  47. Nellie Mueller — March 16, 2008 @ 10:02 am

    Hello, Joan! I’m a Lazy Girl and a Sloanie, too. Thanks for taking part in our weekend Sew Along. Your bag patterns
    are the best! Nellie

  48. tina — March 16, 2008 @ 10:03 am

    That is one cute pup and one cute bag! LOVE it, it absolutely inspires me to take pics of my dogs fresh from the groomer and create my own darling puppy bag! Fabbo!

  49. Jackie — March 16, 2008 @ 10:05 am

    I saw your website on Pat Sloan’s sew-along and love your pet purse idea! I have a dalmation named Maggie who’s my screensaver on my computer. A purse is an even better way to show her off. I’ve been to your site before and remember how cute your purses are.


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