Saturday, November 02, 2013

The Dog Ate My Wallet...

Really. She did. Actually it was a few years ago now that she chewed the corner off of it and it's been a source of embarrassment since. Nothing says classy like a wallet with a big bite out of it. Good grief!

I've been looking for a replacement for a long time, but never found one in the stores that I liked enough. So then last year I started looking at patterns and tutorials, but I always found something I didn't quite like about them. Fast forward to a little while ago when I found the Necessary Clutch Wallet from Emmaline Bags.  I was completely taken with it. Roomy, oodles of spots to put things and it looks darn good as well. I was sold.

It's taken me a little while to sew, mostly because I had to make the boys' knapsacks, my swap gift and the Halloween costumes. It was also a bit daunting to tell you the truth, only because I've never made anything quite like it yet.

The instructions that Janelle provides with the pattern are excellent though. Clear as can be, lots of photos, and really thorough. I was quite impressed.  I had cut out one set of fabric for it, but then going through my cottons fabric bin one night in search of something totally unrelated I came across the left over fabric from my Working Girl Laptop Bag and knew I really wanted to make a black and white wallet instead.

I started out one evening with great gusto. Well, that is until I got to step three where I had to put the locking clasp in. Eeek! Somehow it was more stressful than the one I did on my laptop bag.  I think the instructions should come with the first step of having a stiff drink! Cutting holes in fabric, fumbling with teeny tiny screws that are nearly impossible to find when they fall under the sewing desk, glue running everywhere... Yikes! But I had my trusty assistant Fluffy the kitten to cheer me on in his own special way of climbing on my head or sitting right on top of it all. Maybe stiff drink should also be the final step of that part too.  In the end I managed to conquer the locking clasp and oh what a beauty it is. The screw in plate, despite all my trials and tribulations, makes such a nice professional looking finish.

Look at that locking clasp looking all innocent
and not at all like it almost drove me to drink!
I had a few moments of frustration along the way, but nothing to do with the pattern. I tried several times to put in the card slot section of the wallet. My BFF the stitch ripper was my constant companion. After several tries I gave up. There's only so much I can take in one sitting. After I felt a little less like tossing the whole thing out the window, it occurred to me that maybe I should double check my measurements. Guess what?!? Even though I use a rotary cutter, ruler and mat with grid lines I had somehow cut the whole piece almost a quarter of an inch too narrow. The mind... It boggles. I cut a new set of pieces and lo and behold, problem solved.

I finished my wallet yesterday afternoon and I LOVE it! I transferred everything over from the overstuffed,  chewed up one to my brand spanking new Necessary Clutch and would you believe I have tons of room left in it? It's kind of like Mary Poppins' carpet bag. It doesn't look overly huge until the lamp gets pulled from it.  I won't likely carry that much in it, but nice to know I could easily stash my phone  right in my clutch wallet if I wanted to! I just can't say enough good things about the Necessary Clutch Wallet pattern. 

The Mary Poppins carpet bag of wallets!!
See, what did I tell you?! Look at all that room! There's a slip pocket on either side of each card slot section - which, by the way, has a total of twelve slots - then there's the zip pocket you can see there with the zip opened to give you an idea of size, and lastly a section in the middle that is roomy enough for my cel phone!  But even with all that room inside it all compacts nicely into an "easy to pop into your purse" size!

The Necessary Clutch Wallet
I wonder how many wallets a girl can have? I'm already thinking about that other one that's already cut out...

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