Archive for the ‘handmade wallet’ Category

Now y’all know I really enjoy a great thrift store find, right? It’s true- and what defines a “great” thrift store find doesn’t always equal its monetary value. Sometimes it’s just how much I simply love it- and let me tell you- this skirt was love at first sight!

Just seeing the print made me happy. I didn’t know why at the time, it just did. But I didn’t buy it. Well, not THAT day.

I didn’t buy it because it wasn’t my size, and happy as it made me to meet such fun on a hangar, it’s just silly to buy something I will never wear.

Or is it?

A few days later it dawned on me: THIS is why I loved the skirt: it reminded me of my 1960’s era Yellow Submarine lunchbox (with matching Thermos, thankyouverymuch!)

The pink is THE pink.
The orange is THE orange.
The yellow is THE yellow.
The teal? Oh yeah. It’s THE teal!
And that’s why, fit or not, I needed to go back and rescue that skirt from the size 10 thrift store rack!
So I did.
And it made me HAPPY



And you know what I did next?
I cut it up.

Oh yes I did.
And I made THIS out of it:

Here’s another shot of my Happy Yellow Submarine purse: (I’ll tell you about that wall in the background a little later.)

Did someone just say, “SQUEEEEEEE!”?
Oh, sorry, yes, that was me. I’m still pretty happy over this whole skirt-doesn’t-fit-but-I-bought-it-and-made-a-stinkin’-PURSE-out-of-it thing.
If you wanna try to make one, here’s the recipe:
Shop the fabric – not the sizes- in the thrift stores. (Note: I also shop the buttons & lace parts of thrifty clothes!)
Bring it home. (You don’t have to wait for pleasant childhood memories to lure you back to the thrift store, where *GASP* someone may have bought it!)
Cut it as you wish. I cut the fabric about 1/2″ longer than the depth I wanted in the purse. I also cut a strip to serve as the shoulder strap and I cut the flounce off the bottom. If you happen to have a “flouncy” bottom on your skirt, just cut about 1/2″ above the ruffle so you can sew it back on later.
Once everything was cut, I took a deep breath. As much as I love the fabric, I didn’t want to be disappointed if my project didn’t work out! I decided that I could enjoy the fabric as a little pillow for the car, or maybe a scarf, or at the minimum, a pin cushion for my sewing table.
Once I figured out all-is-not-lost, I began sewing.
I happened to have some webbing in my stash, and it was just the right length for a shoulder strap.


I had to trim the fabric down a bit. Let me just mention that I really winged this whole thing- there was no “exact” measuring and when I cut the fabric, it was often uneven. This wasn’t a big deal since I was going to be happy regardless. (See car pillow, scarf, pin cushion above.)

I top-stitched and poof! We have a shoulder strap.

I needed a closure of some sort so I dug these out of my hardware stash:


And sewed them inside what used to be the waistband. I used a scrap of ribbon for added support. Oh, and that metal doohickey that goes on the back of the magnet? Yeah, I lost one. It’s probably in the carpet somewhere, but I was too busy being HAPPY to stop, drop and search, so I forged ahead!
Next, I actually had to UNDO this because my magnet was not strong enough to connect with fabric covering it.

It was time to add the shoulder strap. I decided I wanted the zipper on the side and since it’s nylon, I could sew over it. This would keep it closed.

I added the ruffle – flounce just below what was the waistband but is now the top edge of my purse. I simply sewed up the bottom of the bag and VOILA! Momma’s got a brand new bag!
Happy? Oh yeah. It’s got happy written all over it!

Here it is in a different pose:

And here it is at church: (we went to Saturday night service. We love the option of Saturday church!)

A few notes: this was simply a fun project. I didn’t sweat out stuff like accurate cutting or seams or fancy, clean finishes. I wasn’t sure any of it would work out but since it did, I’ll enjoy using such a fun bag!
Note also that the fabric puddles- it’s a poly blend and very slinky so the bag doesn’t have stability. I’ll use a zipper bag inside to keep the little stuff from spilling out.
Final note: that wall. Talk about things that make you happy?! My daughter and son-in-law faux-finished this for me as a Mother’s Day gift several years ago. I blogged about it HERE
Thanks for stopping by! God bless, thrift on and be happy!
Kathy Bo


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So I set out to make a new wallet.

I didn’t have a pattern, but had an old wallet that my friend Rebecca loaned to me. It was very much like this one except it wasn’t …


This is a sewing blog, and things don’t always turn out like we planned. I’m going to show you just how that happens, so sit back and get ready for the good, the bad and the pathetic.


I love this Amy Butler fabric and I had just enough scraps left over from another project to make this wallet. The zipper was one of many in a thrift store bag. So the cost of the wallet is less than $1.


People, I should be ashamed. What was I thinking? I have to confess here… I was a bit agitated the night I put this together. I think it was the wallet that was agitating me… that and the fact that somehow I completely sewed the dollar bill compartment shut.

The raw edges around the coin pouch are B A D. Bad, as in, why-didn’t-I-just-go-buy-a-stinkin’-wallet-bad. Bad, as in, I-can’t-believe-I’m-gonna-blog-this-bad. But you deserve to see the good, and yes, the bad. So here it is:


And now, so as not to disappoint:

The Pathetic:

I made a wallet last year… or longer… I have no concept of months… from an old Vera Bradley placemat (the blue one with the dorky flowers). It was ugly when I made it and it is ugly now. What it isn’t is pathetic. Like the one I just finished:

The zipper is sticking out too far on the right (and it will continue to do so, as I had to sew up the hole I left in it!) and that snap? Ok, I admit that my “snap” skills are right on par, but just like in real estate: location, location, location!

I put the stinkin’ thing too far up on the tab and put its connector too far up on the wallet. The result is a short snapper… is that a word? Snapper? Well, considering the fact that I’m having some wallet drama, it is now.

I should be ashamed to even share this but here it is: it looks like a tongue sticking out. “Help meee!” It says. And check out that curvey zipper! Just in case you think this is a “designer” effect, zippers aren’t really supposed to do that.

So what to do with my Most Pathetic Wallet. Ever.? Move in, of course! I wanted to use on a trip this weekend because of its size. It is Mostly Pathetic but it is also mostly perfectly sized!

So I moved in and will test drive it this weekend. If I like the location of the compartments (there are 7!) then I’ll incorporate those in the next version.

All moved in (yeah, my license is backwards behind that clear vinyl (and too short) window). My cards are all there, but the cash? Well, there’s not much of it, but it’s tucked inside a deep pocket just behind the green and yellow discount cards. You can just see the edge of the bills. In a perfect wallet world, they would be folded into the side like all self respecting bills should be, but I digress.

And I will now close up my Most Pathetic Wallet. Ever., stash it in my purse and enjoy what I can of it this weekend! Stay tuned: a new improved (OR a more pathetic) version is sure to make an appearance soon!

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