Pattern Testing: The Presidio Purse!


For the life of me I can’t get an adequate photo of this project. Poor Erin. She asks for a glamour shot and this is what she gets. The worst photographs on my blog yet.

I have only made a couple bags and each time I really disliked the process and the product. So, when I got on Seamstress Erin’s list of testers for her fabulous new Presidio Purse pattern by accident, I wrote her an email saying as much. Before I hit send, however, the design won me over and I thinking that maybe I’ve changed in skill or attitude in the three years since I last made a bag. Caution was thrown to the wind, and my third-ever bag was made.

Worn with a brand new Renfrew that for some reason I wore with a navy camisole. I don’t know. Sorry, Erin. I would take photos again, but this is the third time and best attempt, believe it or not!

Well, I’m not a bag maker. The pattern was great, instructions were very clear, and I actually quite like the finished product, but ugh, there’s something about bag making that just doesn’t click with me! This is in no way a complaint about the pattern, it really is fantastic and for this style of purse I can hardly imagine you could do better.

Did the bag look a bit square? It’s because there are ice skates in there! It is the PERFECT bag to stash ice skates!

Erin calls this bag oversize, and she’s not kidding. It’s really big! As soon as I taped the pattern pieces together I got scared and reprinted at 80%, after trying to decide if this would make me an irresponsible tester. I figured that I wasn’t supposed to be testing it anyway, so why not experiment… and it worked all right! It’s still a huge bag, I mean, I put skates, a jacket, lunch, normal purse stuff, and a binder in there and it wasn’t quite stuffed, but I feel like the size fits my 5’4″ frame a bit better.

In conclusion, thanks to Erin for making such a great pattern!! I can’t wait to see what else she comes up with, and make all the women’s clothes!


10 thoughts on “Pattern Testing: The Presidio Purse!

  1. Wow – 80%! That must be one huge bag! I think you made the right decision!

    This isn’t a style I’d choose for myself, but you really did a good job on it, and I love the “menswear” fabrics you chose.

    1. I know, it doesn’t look too big when Erin holds it, but I’m just too small for 100%! This isn’t my usual style either, but I definitely reach for it on skating and library trips!

  2. I love the fabric choice you made for the bag – it was hard for me to see in the other photos I had, but the houndstooth and tweed(?) look understated and gorgeous! Thanks again for giving the bag a shot!

    1. Yeah, that’s was type of photo you get when you don’t finish until 1am the night before it’s due… I’m so sorry! That pattern deserved the best of testers!

  3. Ice skates?! Actually, I believe it! I’m sad so many of us have included the words “poor Erin” in our posts about these purses, especially considering how much care and time were put into the pattern drafting and instructions. Maybe December is a hard month to pattern test?

  4. Kudos to you for making a really cute bag! Like you, I’ve had negative/frustrating bag-sewing experiences so I’m not a fan of sewing them anymore. I can’t believe you shrunk the pattern down — the original must be huge! It’s good to see a smaller version to get a sense of its size — I’m shorter than you so I would definitely need to reduce the pattern as well. Have fun ice skating!

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