Make a Mandala Market Clutch
If there is one thing that I look forward to the most about spring, it has to be the outdoor markets! There is nothing quite like strolling around at the market on a sunny afternoon, shopping for unique crafts, fresh produce, and homemade treats. This project celebrates the spring market season; blending a beautiful mandala sunflower tribute with a fresh spin on cosmetic bags!
- Cricut cosmetic bag
- Heat transfer vinyl
- Teflon sheet (optional, but recommended)
- Digital design: Mandala Ornament, Font: Predators
- Embellishments (tassels, ribbons, flatback gems, etc.)
- Glue (for embellishments)
- Weeding tools
- Cricut Explore Air 2
- Cricut EasyPress and mat
Make Your Mandala Market Clutch – Cricut Design Space
As always, prepare your supplies and workspace before jumping into this project, then open up Design Space to get ready to start creating.
First, insert a square shape from the shapes library. This will act as your template for the clutch, so you can go ahead and unlock it in order to resize it to the same dimensions as your blank. I am using the large Cricut brand cosmetic bag which is 9.6” x 7.5” in size. Change the color to white for a more accurate preview of your finished design, then duplicate it so that you now have a template for the reverse side as well (this is optional, but who doesn’t love a reversible bag?)
You will also need a floral mandala SVG, which you can easily grab from Creative Fabrica in the freebies section. I used the Mandala Ornament one as it fits well with my sunflower theme which is perfect for a spring market tribute, but as always, I encourage you to get creative and choose the one that you like best!
Once you have your mandala uploaded, insert another square and place it under the mandala – then line the mandala up against the edge of the square so that only half of it is actually on the shape. Once you have it as centered as best you can, select both the square and the mandala then slice it. You now have half of a mandala. You can delete the square and extra slices as you won’t need them, just keep the half.
Now just resize it so that it fits nicely in the template, then align > left, and align > vertically.
- Design Tip: Make use of the Contour tool if your mandala has too many or tiny cuts. First, select the object and then click on Contour. In the pop up you can simply click on the cuts that you want to turn off. I used this feature in order to create a different effect for the front vs. the back.
When everything has been sized and aligned, open up Inkscape (or create a text field in Design Space) and create the text you would like. I used the Predators font; it’s quickly become one of my favorites. Not only does it cut flawlessly, but I find it such a great universal script that can be used in so many different kinds of projects.
Align the text accordingly.
You have just completed your design for the front side!
To create the reverse side, simply duplicate the mandala half. Have some fun with the contour tool to hide some of the cuts for either the front or back to create a lovely positive/negative effect. I also added a full, smaller version of the mandala to help emphasize the message.
This design is fairly simple to create, but because of the mandala artwork it really stands out against the white background of your bag. Sometimes simple is perfectly pretty!
- Glitter HTV: Be careful if you choose to use glitter HTV to create the mandala. The Cricut machine will struggle with cutting the smaller sections due to the thickness of the HTV.
Now that you have both the front and back of the bag designed, delete the square shapes, attach your texts, and then go ahead and click that Make It button!
- Remember: Don’t forget to mirror your designs!
Heat Press Your Vinyl
Normally I would suggest heating up the EasyPress while you are weeding your pieces of vinyl, but weeding the mandalas will take some time. Your best bet is to wait until you are finished.
Because this design is not as intricate as some other mandalas, it may be noticeable if you lose a couple of the smaller pieces while weeding. Just go very slowly and you should be fine. I do find weeding a little more difficult on patterned iron-on, due to some of them having a “no stick” factor, so keep that in mind too if you choose to use that type of vinyl.
Align your designs onto your cosmetic bag blank – it doesn’t matter which side you start with. I recommend replacing the mask on top of the already pressed vinyl, however, in order to protect it while you press the other pieces. I also recommend using a Teflon sheet for further protection against the heat.
Be sure to follow your vinyl manufacturer’s guidelines for temperature and pressing time so that your designs adhere perfectly (and don’t burn!) Repeat the same process for the opposite side. Let everything cool slightly before removing the mask – you don’t want to burn your fingers!
- Weeding Mistake Tip: If you do lose some tiny pieces while weeding the mandala, you can “cover” up your mistakes with flatback gems or other tiny embellishments.
While your reversible bag looks amazing right off the press, you still need to add some finishing touches that will bring it over the top! Grab some embellishments; such as a couple of tassels, ribbons, or just about anything that you want to decorate your new clutch with. You can even glue on some flatback gemstones or sequins, but just keep in mind that if you choose to do this you’ll want to put a piece of cardstock inside the bag first so that you don’t accidentally glue both sides together!
Once you have your embellishments on, you’re done! Allow to dry (if you glued on some gems) and remember to hand wash only, otherwise you risk losing the decorations. Bring your new market clutch with you to the next market and revel in your fabulous creation!
I don’t know about you but I’m going shopping 😉
Keep on Crafting!