Draw and Stitch a Purse Kit

Draw and Stitch a Purse Kit Instructions

Thank you for buying the Studio ND 'Draw and Stitch a Purse' kit. This is my favourite kit! It really gives you the opportunity to get creative and design something personal. This project can take as long as you need to create a design you are happy with. The stitching and finishing will only take an hour or so.

The options are limitless when it comes to a pattern, look around you and online for inspiration and make a few sketches first. You don’t need to be an illustrator to get some really professional looking results. Make sure you have a play with the dye pen on the demo piece before you get started as this will help give you an idea of what you can achieve. Start by opening the box and familiarising yourself with the tools and materials, be careful with the dye pen as it is permanent!

purse making kit
  1. Remove the brass sam browne stud from the purse by unscrewing the back. Place it aside, somewhere safe. Try not to handle the leather too much at this stage as it will mark easily and any oil from your fingers will stop the dye from absorbing as well. Practice your design on the test piece of leather until you feel you are ready to draw on the purse.

  2. Draw your design, being careful not to smudge the dye as you go. Keep your hands and sleeves away from anywhere you have just drawn. Leave the purse somewhere safe to dry for at least two hours, preferably over night.

burnishing purse

3. Next you are going to be burnishing the top and bottom edges of your purse. Burnishing is the process of polishing by rubbing. It stops your edges from fraying and makes them look professional. The video below will help you understand the process.

Dip the dauber into the edge finisher and remove any excess. Brush the edges lightly, being careful not to let any finisher drip down the front of your purse.

Place the purse flat on a cutting mat or chopping board and bring the edge you are burnishing to the edge of the mat so they are flush. Working in sections of 5 to 10cm, rub the canvas backwards and forwards quickly, pressing down with your index finger and in from the side with your middle finger. Repeat the process on the other side.


4. Finish the surface of the purse with the finishing creme. Apply lightly to the surface of the purse using the cotton piece and work it in to the leather in circular motions. Leave to dry for a few minutes and then buff with a dry piece of the cotton. Wash your hands after handling the finishing creme and work in a well ventilated area.


5. Re-attach the sam brown stud and tighten the back using a flat head screwdriver. You are now ready to stitch. You will be doing a ‘saddle stitch’ which is done with one thread and two needles at the same time. Thread the needles using the technique below. This will ensure the needle doesn’t slip off as you are stitching.


Threading your needle ready for saddle stitch

  1. Snipping the thread at an angle makes it easier to thread. Thread one of the needles leaving a tail of about 8-10cm.

  2. Unravel the thread in an area about 4cm from the end and push the needle through.

  3. Pull the thread back through the eye so the pierced area slides down the needle and over the eye creating a knot under the eye.

  4. Apply pressure and twist so the threads fuse together.

  5. Do the same for the other end of the thread. You should now have one length with two needles at either end.


7. Follow the stitching instructions below and use the video to help you along the way. When you have finished stitching, burnish the edges on both sides using the same process as step 3. The only difference this time is you will be burnishing two pieces of leather together. The two edges should fuse together as you burnish them leaving one shiny edge.

saddle stitch instructions

Your purse is finished and ready to show off!


Photos and video credit: Heather Birnie Photography