This is just a reminder of the original insert.
This almost looks like leather in the scan but it's actually a synthetic slick two sided fabric that was kind of a pain to work with. I tried machine stitching the insert in and that didn't work at all. I didn't have much control, even with pin basting, and it got all wonky on me so I ripped it out. Thinking that might be the case, I had used the machine's basting stitch so it wasn't all that bad to rip out. So then I hand stitched it to the fabric.
The sides puzzled me. I had the bag too wide so had to find a way to make up for the shorter width of the insert. I sewed a strip down each side but even that was tricky. I couldn't sew over the lace for fear of catching a thread from the insert so I waited until I put the white fabric background behind the insert and then stitched around it all covering the ends of the insert.
For this one, I cut open the space for the insert and handstitched around the edges, trimming the fabric when I was done. I actually stitched a border of French Knots around the edge in the same thread the insert was tatted but it looked really REALLY amatuerish so I took them out. The knots looked good on their own but I couldn't get the spacing right and the color just threw everything off.
Here's a close-up. I haven't attached a fastener on either of these. I think I will make a buttonhole and add a pretty button to the top one. This one has a casing for a cord or ribbon though I stitched the seam wrong for that to work. I should have stitched the seam before I stitched the casing but I'll make it work. It will just be more time and trouble. I'm also thinking about tatting a simple edging for the top.
So...two more to go! And this is why I don't want too much length. I get too wrapped up in variations and then it takes me forever to use them the way I want to. Inserts typically go on table mats or linens, perhaps clothing if you're inclined towards that. I am, but I don't have the time or focus to do it right now. This is only the second time I've tried to stitch a tatted motif as an insert. I'd forgotten how frustrated I was the last time! I'm sure the more you practice, the better you get.
I'm really anxious to do the next two. I think one will be a pincushion....maybe both. I think you'll like them even better. I really need to open an Etsy shop!