SILK PURSE BUT NOT OUT OF A SOW'S EAR!
WOW, silk is so much fun to work with. My daughter, Karen, brought me the most luscious pieces of silk from Texas last month. We both decided to cut out little purses to carry in the evening to dinner. They will hold our cell phones, one lipstick, and a few tissues. Such a pleasure.
Wanted to share mine finished. I used Christmas cording, plaited to make the handle. It called for a 7" zipper, but I only had a 12" one. I'm sure you know you can sew horizontally across any plastic zipper where you want it to stop, and then cut the rest away leaving only an inch. It will work fine. I buy zippers on sale, no matter what the length once I learned this trick!
If you've never tried ribbon embroidery, you must, I also used some scraps of trim that I had in my sewing box. I save pretty ribbons from packages to use in this way, too. Hand sewing all the little pearls and ribbons on is so relaxing. There are many websites that teach ribbon embroidery. Try it. It is great fun.