mending

Small Purple Bag Mend

I had really hoped my first official post would be full of lovely pictures after moving into my studio, but life has been crazy and I couldn’t put off my mending fever until getting in there!
Deciding to record my mending with photos has been eye-opening to me, I never realized how second-nature mending was to me until I had to remind myself that I couldn’t just pick something up and fix it without documenting the progress.

I love this purse, I’ve had it since 2013, but when the strap finally broke I tucked it away to deal with later. While cleaning I found it in the bottom of a box and I just had to bring it back to life. Below you’ll see several shots of the damage, lots of tears and fraying on the strap, which had broken off on one side completely and tons of little snags in the weave of the fabric, likely caused by this redundant velcro I ended up removing in favor of the decorative button it has.

First, I started by removing the broken part of the strap, to do this I opened the side-seam it was stitched into and pulled the old piece out. About a third of the way up the strap I also removed a large chunk that was so frayed it was barely hanging on. I could have replaced the entire strap, but it’s so soft and worn in that I wanted to keep it, and I definitely like a challenge, so I chose to experiment with patching it. I reenforced the side that was still hanging on, attached the cut segment back together, as well as proactively covered some new fraying with lovely blue patches, and then re-attached the newly clean-cut side back into the seam I’d previously opened. All-in-all I only lost about 3 inches from the strap in its repair

Next I decided to remove the velcro that caused all the snagging in the weave of the outer fabric, because it has a button, the velcro was redundant anyways. Hopefully this will minimize snags in the future. I’ll save the velcro for some other project.

Next, the mend that felt like it would never end – there were what felt like hundreds of little snags in the weave of the fabric. To hide and protect these, I used a small crochet hook to pull them between the decorative weave, and the lining of the bag.

All-in-all I’m really happy with the results, and I get to use my favorite bag again. I used a combination of visible (the strap) and invisible (the snags) mending. Here are the results,

Would I do anything differently? I think I could have saved about an hour on this repair by using a sewing machine on the patches, but cleaning my sewing table seemed like a far more daunting task than hand-stitching the mend.