I have had a number of inquiries as to the best way to put a turnlock in a felted bag. In fact, in a workshop last year some of the participants chided me for not having done a video or blog tutorial on this subject. I took the pictures below at that workshop as we were working through the steps. So, thank you to the participants in the bag finishing workshops at Ann Marie’s shop Yarn Diva. What follows is a step by step explanation of the method I taught in that bag finishing workshop, and the same method use in the bags I make myself.
First, gather your materials: The turnlock flap can either be the flap of a bag – the Dinner Party Backstage, for example, could sport a turnlock instead of a fancy magnetic snap – or a narrow flap made specifically for the turnlock – this is the case here.
You will also need newspaper to protect your work surface, a damp paper towel for clean-up, a bottle of fabric glue or Locktight Superglue, specifically the Extra Time Control formula (sorry, not pictured!), a pen to mark the turnlock flap, a small screw driver, scissors. and, of course, the turnlock itself.
Step 1: Place the turnlock
First, you should place the turnlock in the center of the turnlock flap. You may want to measure with a tape measure to make sure it is where you want it.
Step 2: Mark The Spot for the Lock
I recommend using a black pen or Sharpie to mark the location of the turnlock on the front or back of the turnlock flap. While we show it on the front of the flap here, it may be better to mark up the back just in case you need to revise the placement.
Now you will need to cut the felt, so be very careful and deliberate. The image will you have drawn on the back of the turnlock flap will be just slightly smaller than the actual hole needs to be. Cut to that marked size and then slowly shave a milimeter at a time until the lock housing fits through the cut out without any buckling or tightness.
The turnlock will be held in place best if it is glued in place. First, apply your fabric glue or Superglue to the “front” of the turnlock housing as shown below.
Put the front (right) side of the turnlock flap down on the wrong side of the turnlock face. Press in place with your fingers for a good stick.
In order for the flap to be thoroughly held in place in the turnlock housing, apply glue to the cut edge of the felt once the front side is face down on the turnlock front housing.
Use the damp paper towel you have at the ready to clean-up any glue that got squeezed out and then polish the exposed metal front and back of the lock until shiny and free of glue.
Before you put the turnlock flap on the bag itself, lock the lock and then position the flap on the bag. Only at this point do I actually baste the flap itself in place on the bag.
Once the flap is basted in place and the flap itself allows to fall to its resting place on the front of the bag (with all parts of the turnlock on the flap–that is, the lock, too), press the prongs of the turnlock “lock” into the bag (so that the prongs are now on the inside of the bag) where you want the lock to sit.
Next, unlock the lock and, holding just the lock itself, press the lock prongs the rest of the way through the bag front. Put the little metal sleeve on the prongs and press the prongs toward the center to secure.
With the lock still unlocked, now you can rivet or sew the turnlock flap in place permanently.
This part of the process is finished!
Still have questions? Ask them in the comments section below and I will answer either in the comments or another blog posting.