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Interfacing Guide for Handmade bag in India


Today I want to share about interfacing. Not the famous brand, we don't have those branded interfacings here in India. I often receive a message asking what interfacing I used in my bags, Pouches, and Wallets.

Many of you probably already read interfacing guide by Sew Sweetness but since we - in India - don't have all those brands, we are back to square one, right?

I have been experiencing with many kinds and quality of interfacings. Which interfacing to use depends on what kind of project and what look that I want. Floppy, firm, sturdy, quilted, etc.

I recently purchase a roll of heavy woven interfacing and I am happy that I finally found it. It took me several trips to the wholesaler. He was kind enough to let me check through all kind of interfacings without asking  "what are you making, ma'am?" which is pretty much the habit of Indian (male) shopkeeper/sales person. And it always pisses me off, cos what I am making is none of his business ^^.
Anyway, I found what work best for my projects.

I use this very frequently to make small projects like small pouches or pencil pouch.  This will make cotton fabric feel like home decor weight fabric. Not as thick as canvas though. I used this to make the Phone Pouch and Kindle Cover, pencil pouch, and Tote bag.  With this interlining, adding batting to the pouch won't be a problem.

Black and Grey Phone Pouch with pocket and  detachable strap
Mobile Phone Pouch / Mini Sling bag
Result: Soft /floppy and wrinkle free, that means you can smoothen it with a warm iron.

2.  Medium Woven Interfacing

I discover this recently. It's thicker than all-purpose interlining. It gives a good shape to bag and pouch.

You can see the fabric print more prominent on the all purpose interlining
Medium = MCL 3001 Madura Coats India

I use this for a  pouch or any purse that I don't need it to be padded. Sometimes I use this interfacing for wallet or passport wallet too, combined it with Heavy Interfacing.

Heidi Mini Foldover Bag

This is also woven but heavier. This will make your fabric feels like canvas.

MCL 1616 (Madura Coats India)

I use this for my passport wallets and women's wallets. The result is a firm but soft wallet. Since it's cotton base, it makes the hand sewing less painful.

Quilting Family Passport  wallet, large passport holder, passport case, family travel wallet, family passport cover, 6 passport organizer

4. Buckram

This is my alternative if I could not get the heavy interfacing for my wallet. This is the one with papery feeling and it makes the fabric very stiff. I only use this for wallets. Since I don't have to do "birthing", it works out fine. You can read HERE to learn more about Buckram.

I remember I made a tote bag with buckram and it wrinkled beyond repair LOL. I used it for a shopping bag.

All the above are iron-on or fusible. Which means one side is glue coated. I normally spray the fabric with water and place glue side on the wrong side of the fabric, and iron it on a cotton setting. For lighter interlining use setting in between wool and cotton.

5. Lightweight Non-Woven Interfacing.

This transparent fusible interfacing is called "pasting" in India. I use this a lot for my wallet card slots, quilted pouches, and also applique.

It's good to give just enough thickness. But you have to be extra careful because it will shrink and wrinkled if the iron is too hot. I use wool setting while ironing this interfacing.

Card slot from Trifold Women's Wallet
if you're careful, you will get a nice and smooth result. 

I also use this for quilted pouches and bag, especially when I work with Indian Fabric.  

Quilted Zipper Pouch
Quilted Zipper Pouch 

That's all for today. 
Don't be scared to experiment. Make the best of what you can find locally.
I hope this simple guide will be useful for you. 

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Until then,


  1. This is really helpful, thank you so much..

    1. I am glad to help! Thank you for stopping by

  2. Where should I exactly get this in India. I am in bangalore...

    1. you can ask your local sewing supply shop. There are other brands too but the ones I wrote here are what I usually use and available in my city.

  3. This post was really helpful, thanks for writing this. I wanted to ask you regarding buckram fabric. What is the best possible way to get buckram in india? The link in the post didn't really link me anywhere. Would appreciate your advice. Ta.


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