Oly*Fun Handbag Tutorial by SanjBDesigns

sanjb bag free pattern

sanjb bag

Hi All!

Welcome to my Handbag Tutorial made of Oly*Fun and faux leather.

I’m a self-taught sewist and handbag designer. I work a lot with faux leather but didn’t know much about Oly*Fun except when looking to see what colors it came in. When I received it, I was surprised at how paper thin the material was, and to be honest, I was a bit intimidated by it.

I was happy to discover that Oly*Fun is easy to use and durable as heck; waterproof, no tearing, no fraying…and it sews like a dream!

I love the end product and hope you enjoy making it as much as I did. 😊


  • Oly*Fun
  • Faux leather
  • Cotton material for lining
  • Polyester thread
  • Denim needle for sewing faux leather
  • Fleece polyester one-sided fusible interfacing (Pellon 987F or similar)
  • Ultra firm one-sided fusible interfacing (Pellon 71F or similar)
  • 1” adjustable strap hardware, qty 1
  • 1” rectangular strap hardware, qty 2
  • Metal snap button, qty 1
  • Hole punch for snap (1/16”)
  • Measuring tool
  • Ironing cloth


  • Top panels, qty. 2 (Oly*Fun) – 12 ¼” W x 7” H
  • Top panels, qty. 2 (lining) – 12 ¼” W x 7” H
  • Bottom panels and base, qty. 3 (faux leather) – 12 ¼” W x 3 ¾” H
  • Bottom panels and base, qty. 3 (lining) – 12 ¼” W x 3 ¾” H
  • Flap, qty. 1 (Oly*Fun) – 11” W x 8 H”
  • Flap, qty. 1 (lining) – 11” W x 8 H”
  • Top panel interfacing, qty. 2 (987F) – 11” W x 5 ½ ” H
  • Base interfacing, qty. 1 ea (housing base, 71F) – 10 ¾” W x 2 ½” H
  • Base interfacing, qty. 1 ea (lining base, 987F) – 10 ¾” W x 2 ½” H
  • Flap interfacing, qty. 1 (987F) – 9 ¾ “ W x 6 ½ “ H
  • Strap hardware tab, qty. 2 (Oly*Fun) – 2” W x 3”H
  • Strap, qty. 1 (Oly*Fun) – 4” W x 50” L


  • When fusing the interfacing (glue side facing down), place an ironing cloth on top of the interfacing. Firmly press (do not rub) the iron, holding for about 5 seconds until all sections have been heated and fused well. Once finished, flip the piece over and check for any lumps. If necessary, place the ironing cloth on the right-side of the fabric. Gently and quickly smooth out the lumps with the iron; this time in a rubbing motion, never leaving the iron in one place for too long.
  • It is best not to use pins in faux leather as they may leave visible marks.
  • Using a walking foot helps when sewing faux leather

* Caution must be taken when using heat on Oly*Fun and faux leather as they can melt *


Cut out all pieces of material and interfacing using template sizes listed above.

Step 1 – Create flap

step 1

Draw a line ½” away from the 3 edges of the flap panel then draw a curved edge on either side as shown. You can use the edge of a cup or plate or just freehand it. Anything curved will do.

Sew flap panel to inner lining flap panel (right-sides facing) by sewing directly on the lines created along the 3 edges. Cut or clip curved edges using pinking shears or scissors to prevent bulkiness in the corners.

Cut curved edges in fusible interfacing and bond as shown using an iron and ironing cloth.

Turn the flap panel right-side out. Use fingers or a curved tool to neatly form the curved edges. Use clips as shown to ensure the material is nice and smooth. Check both sides and adjust as needed.

Using a ¼” seam allowance, topstitch along the perimeter of the flap leaving the bottom edge open.

Find the center width of the bag. Measuring up 1” from the edge as shown in the photo, mark and punch the hole for your snap. Do not install the snap. It will be installed at step 10.

Step 2 – Prepare Top Panels:

Center and carefully fuse interfacing to top panels using an iron and ironing cloth.

Step 3 – Sew Bottom Panels and Base:

Sew the 1st top panel and the 1st bottom panel together (right-sides facing) using a ⅝” seam allowance.

Sew the 2nd bottom panel to the 1st bottom panel (right-sides facing) using a ⅝” seam allowance.

Sew the 3rd bottom panel to the 2nd bottom panel (right-sides facing) using a ⅝” seam allowance.

Sew the 2nd top panel and the 3rd bottom panel together (right-sides facing) using a ⅝” seam allowance.

Step 4 – Topstitch Top and Bottom Panels:

Using a ¼” seam allowance, topstitch the following seams (6 places):

Bottom edge of top panels

Top and bottom edge of bottom panels

Step 5 – Install the Base Interfacing:

Center and fuse the ultra-firm interfacing to the wrong side of the base panel as shown using an iron and ironing cloth.

Step 6 – Form Bag Housing:

With right-sides facing, bring panels together as shown. Be sure all seams on either side of each panel line up. Clip along the sides and directly on the interfacing on the base as it may start to separate from the material being bent.

Sew along both side edges using a ⅝” seam allowance.

While holding the bag housing in an upright position, place your hand within. Using your fingers, create a triangle at the base on one side of the bag as shown and clip in place.

Measure either side of the triangle (from tip to seam) to ensure they are approximately the same length, then repeat on the opposite side of the housing.

base seam

Look within the bag to see if the side seam lines up to the center of the base panel. If it does not look centered, repeat the previous two steps.

Using the base seam as your guide, sew across the triangle ¼” away from your base seam.

Tie off your loose wires well.

Remove excess faux leather and interfacing by cutting off approximately ¼” away from your new seam.

Step 7 – Turn Housing Right-side Out and Attach Flap

housing in bag

Turn bag housing right-side out so that the right side of the material is now showing. Insert your fingers within the bag and push out all around the base to ensure the corners are nicely shaped.

Center and clip the bottom (unsewn) portion of the flap edge to the top edge of the top panel with the lining facing up. Note: Be sure that there is equal distance ( approximately ½”) on either side of the flaps edge to the top panel side seams. If not, the strap tabs may not fit properly.

Sew the flap to the top panel using a ¼” seam allowance.

Step 8 – Stitch Perimeter of Bag Housing:

¼” seam allowance

Top panel side seams

Fold the top edge of housing over inwardly approximately 5/8” and clip in place. Doing so will automatically flip the flap into position.

Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the perimeter of the top of the housing.

Step 9 – Create and Attach Strap Tabs:

Fold the long edge of the snap tab material in half.

Sew along both edges using a ¼” seam allowance.

Add hardware to the strap tab and clip to keep hardware in place.

Position and center the strap tab on one side of the bag as shown. Place it at the height you want it to be (the strap tab in the photo is approximately ⅜” above the edge of the housing). Attach the strap tab by sewing directly on top of the stitching done in step 8. Repeat on the opposite side for the 2nd strap tab.

Step 10 – Install Snap Button:

Fold the flap over onto the front side of the bag. Using the hole previously punched in the flap and a marker, mark the position where the new hole in the front of the bag will be. It should measure at approximately 1 ½” from the lower panel seam. Punch a hole where marked.

Note: Be sure to place a pad within the bag to prevent damage from the hole puncher.

Install the snap in the flap and the mate in the top panel. Snap it closed to be sure that it works properly.

Step 11 – Create Liner:

Create the liner by following steps shown in step 3, step 5 (this time using the fleece polyester interfacing), and step 6 (this time using a 7/8” seam allowance).

Fold top edge over approximately 7/8”, then iron.

Step 12 – Install Bag Liner:

bag liner

Drop liner in bag as shown. Be sure that it fits well around the perimeter of the bag housing and has no gaps. The top of the liner should be approximately ⅛” away from the top of the housing edge and the seams of your inner liner should be in line with the seams of the housing. Note: If the liner is too wide or too narrow, adjust your seam allowance (at the top portion of the liner only) equally on both sides and recheck the fit.

It is hard to gauge the liner height at the back of the bag due to the flap. The edge of the liner should be approximately 6 ½ – 6 ¾” away from the edge of the flap.

Note: Be sure this measurement is equal along the length of the flap.

Sew along the perimeter of the housing this time using a ¼” seam allowance.

Step 13 – Create Strap:

create strap

Fold the long edge of the strap in half.

Bring the length of each long edge to the center fold line.

Fold the length of the two long edges together.

Clip edges in place and sew along the perimeter of the strap using a ¼” seam allowance.

Step 14 – Install Strap on Strap Hardware:

Insert one side of your finished strap through the strap hardware previously installed.

Clip as shown and sew together.

Step 15 – Create Adjustable Strap:

purse made with oly*fun fabric

Take the adjustable strap hardware and slide it onto the open end of your strap.

Insert your strap through the hardware on the opposite side of the bag as shown. Be sure that your strap has not become twisted.

oly*fun purse tutorial

Take the open end of the strap and slide it through the right hand side of the bar on the hardware as shown.

Continue bringing it through the left hand side of the bar on the hardware as shown approximately 2-3”.

Clip the end of the strap to the strap which is on the right hand side of the bar and sew together where shown.

Enjoy your Creation!

Have fun mixing it up and making it your own!

~ Sandra Wallace of SanjBDesigns, April 2024

Find Sandra on Instagram, Etsy, and GoImagine!

oly*fun purse tutorial by Sandra Wallace SanJBDesigns


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