Amy Butler Cosmo Bag

Recently I was scouring the classes at my local sewing store, Stitch Lab, and I ran across one for an Amy Butler bag class.  I love her modern take on sewing projects so I signed up.  Of course I had to wait for a Saturday class a few months out.  In my head, the class was in May.  So I started getting excited about which project I’d work on in the class – they offer a couple of different bags depending on sewing skill.  Imagine my disappointment when I realized the class was in JUNE not MAY.  Sigh.

What’s a girl to do?  That’s right, I went to the library.  (I know, an 80 year old girl, but I tell you, my library is cool!)  How cool is my library you ask?  So cool that it not only had the Amy Butler bag book, but it was actually at my branch!  So I rolled on over there, checked it out for three weeks and went home to contemplate sewing projects.  The first project in her book is the Cosmo bag – it’s labeled in the easy category.  So I thought I’d start there.  I picked up my materials (6 1/4 yards of interfacing?!?!) and was ready to get started.

I scoured blogland to hear what others thought of this project and the overwhelming consensus was that was not exactly and “easy” project.  I did note that this bag is one of the options in my sewing class – labeled at intermediate.  Not intimidated, I set out to start making this bag.  I began cutting and cutting and cutting and cutting.  And then I did some more cutting and cutting and cutting and cutting.  I believe the technical term for the number of pieces in this bag is “a crap load” and after you’ve cut them all, they all get interfaced!  After hours of cutting and ironing, I had all the pieces!  Finally!  I was a little tight on the interior fabric, but I’ve got leftover exterior fabric (it’s because of those big pieces you need for both sides of the two pockets for the interior.)

The sewing itself is pretty straightforward – there were one or two places where I had to read the directions a few times.  It would be nice if she added a few more pictures or drawings to her book, but for the most part, not too difficult to follow.  In just a few hours I had both the exterior shells and interior shells assembled.

I fitted them together and started on the home stretch

I will say, sewing the two shells of the bag together was the part where I had the most difficulty.  I didn’t properly ease the difference in the two shells around the entire length of the interior handles which meant that I had a bit of extra material bunched up at the top band on the interior side – but the handles themselves laid perfectly!  Oh well, I figure it’s on the inside and no on will ever see it unless I put a picture up like this.

Dang it!  Why must I point out the flaws!  OK pretend you don’t notice that bunching by the loop for the button – you’re too busy checking out all that awesome pocket space.  So here she is in all her glory – my version of Amy Butler’s Cosmo Bag:

Overall, fairly easy pattern to follow to produce a really nice looking bag.  Cutting and interfacing will take more than half your time on this project so just know once you finish that, it’s all down hill from there!


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18 thoughts on “Amy Butler Cosmo Bag

  1. I think cutting out the pattern is the hardest part of sewing lol! sometimes- I wish it would just cut itself!!! I LOVE the bag though- super cute!!! I love the bag- maybe that will be my next project 😉

  2. OOH I love that!! I need a purse. I am still a beginner, though. Are there any easy projects to do in that book?

    • Michelle, this project was in the easy category and it was pretty easy to get together, but it’s huge for a purse. In fact, most of the bags in the book are pretty large. There is a pattern for a Perfectly Pleated Clutch, but it falls into the intermediate category and of course I love the Blossom Handbag/Shoulder Bag, but it’s in the difficult category.

      • I am missing a piece of my pattern was wondering if you could send me a copy on my email so I can print it off

      • HI – I have made many of her bags – some of the instructions just confused me and I couldn’t visualize it. I do love the bag and I will check out the shoulder bag you mentioned. Thanks.

      • To Bonnie – can you tell me what you are missing? I will be happy to send you whatever I can.

  3. Wow! I really love your bag! Great work. The interior and exterior pockets are super. And I like your choice of fabric colors and design. I was feeling anxious just reading about and looking at the photos of the process. Marilyn 🙂

  4. I LOVE your bag! I am signed up to make this bag in a few weeks and have been trying to get more info tips and tricks to make it smoother sailing :D.
    I think I will try to cut some of the fabric before the class so I can get as much done as possible. Thanks for the info and pictures!

    What fabric did you use?

    • Hi Jamie, thanks for the props! I’d definitely cut and interface the fabric before class as that part takes the longest. The assembly is fairly straight forward so I think your bag will turn out great! I’m sorry to say I don’t remember the name of the fabric – but I picked it up at the Quilt Store in Austin (

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  9. Ohmygosh! Been sewing for years, so I am definitely not a beginner… But geez! That is ALOT of pieces! I started this bag this morning and have yet to turn on my machine! Hoping the end result is worth the effort…yours is certainly encouraging :). Great job!!!

  10. Please help me with attaching the exterior and the lining – do I sew the inside of the handles too? or just around the outside – I sewed everything and left an opening but I can’t get my handles out the right way?

    • Hi Michelle, I’m sorry to hear you are stuck! You just sew the outside of the handles and turn through the inside. In step 6H-I you stay stitch, clip and iron down the inside of the handles. Then once you’ve turned the bag right side out (step 13C) you pin the inside of the handles together and edge stitch to finish.

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