Sunday, August 15, 2010

Handmade Wristlet Makes Running Around Town So Easy!

My new handmade wristlet!
I have a wonderful Coach wristlet that I love, my BFF gave it to me several years ago as a birthday gift. It's beautiful but I wanted one that was a little bigger and one I didn't mind sweating all over since I am now doing yoga all the time. In case you don't know what a wristlet is, it is a wallet that has a strap so you can carry it - on your wrist. It is like a mini - mini purse, usually only big enough for credit cards, money and a tiny lip gloss.

I prefer mine to be big enough for my phone, a wad of credit cards, cash and lip gloss. Yesterday I set my mind to making my own to fit all my stuff. I went to the store, picked out 4 complimentary fabrics and started piecing them together. My first few tries were not very successful. After making one that was too narrow and too tall, I cut parts off and adding parts and whola! found a good size.
Front and back are the same

Inside view

Here are the measurements and instructions if you want to make your own. If you do, please let me know how it turns out. I had a problem with the zipper so if you have a better process, please share.

4 complimentary fabrics - I got 1/4 yard of 3 and 1/2 yard of the lining since you use that for the outer piece and lining. (If you do one fabric, you will need to add the measurements together.)
7" zipper
rotary cutter
cutting mat
seam ripper (or at least I needed one!)

Pattern: (add your desired seam allowance to measurements, I used 1/2". Measurements listed are finished size.)

Outer Fabric (wristlet)
2- Band across top - 8" X 1 1/4"
2- End stripe - 1" x 3 1/2"
2- Middle stripe - 1 1/2 " x 3 1/2"
4- Center double print - 3" x 1 3/4" (cut 2 of one fabric and 2 of a different fabric)

1- Strap - 12" x 1"

1- Lining - 8" x 4 3/4"
1- Inside Pocket - 4 5/8" x 7 1/2"

Sewing Instructions: 
1. Sew the 2 center double prints together, finished piece should be 3 1/2" (plus your seam allowance).
2. Sew middle stripe to each side of the sewn center double prints.
3. Sew the end stripe to each side of the middle stripe. Make both the front and the back.
4. Finished piece should be 8" x 4 3/4" (plus your seam allowance all the way around.)
5. Sew band to the top of the piece.
6. Fold strap in half, iron flat. Open and turn in 1/4" seam on each side, iron flat. Folded piece should be 1/2". Top stitch closed.
7. Sew strap to front left side of the bag, just below the band, or on the band, whichever you prefer. I also sewed a basting stitch across the band about an inch in to make sure it would stay straight when I sewed the two pieces together.
8. Sew the front and back together, sides and bottom.
9. Fold the inside pocket fabric right sides together, sew sides. Flip inside out, iron flat.
10.Sew onto lining.
11.Sew lining together, sides and bottom, right sides together. Clip corners.
12. Fold under seam allowance of band, iron flat.
13. Fold under seam allowance of top of lining, iron flat.
14. Insert lining into wristlet, pin in place.
15. Open zipper, fold end down and put between lining and outer fabric. Using zipper foot, top stitch outer fabric, zipper and lining together.

**To sew the zipper in I started at the end, folded the tail of the zipper down, top stitched down the zipper, folded the other tail under, top stitched a tiny bit of the wristlet without the zipper, folded the other tail of the top of the zipper down and top stitched down the other side of the zipper. When I got to the end though, I couldn't finish top stitching, the zipper end was preventing the fabric to lay flat. I just hand stitched the rest of the zipper and wristlet together. I am sure there is a better way but that was what I did since I was at the end.

And there you go! Now you have a wristlet with a cute pocket on the inside, for what I don't know. I like to have options though a a pocket on the inside lets me put my id or something else I need quickly in a more accessible place rather than rummaging through my cards finding what I need.