Friday, March 29, 2013

Organize In Style: Chic Pocket Laminated Fabric Wallet Tutorial

Show off your chic side with a custom made wallet.  One that can hold up to serious AND while keeping all your cash & cards organized.  Make one in less than an hour with some lovely laminated cotton and my Chic Pocket Laminated Wallet Tutorial!

I used to cram way too much stuff into a standard billfold wallet and had to pull it all out to find a single card.  Which is just a blast with 3 kids hanging off you in the checkout line. This wallet has any easy open snap closure and plenty of room for cards with 6 full size pockets.  Easy to see everything at a glance.  The laminated fabric adds a little extra grip to keep everything in place and add some stylish prints in the mix.  

There's even a bill fold section for all your cash (or in cases like mine a paltry dollar or two).  Now, let's get to it & make one.

You'll Need:
- 1/4yd Laminated Cotton Fabric (I used Urban Birds from Laminates)
- Sewing Notions (shears/rotary cutter, ruler, disappearing marker)
- Flat Clips (I use hair clips, but binder clips, bobby pins or Wonder-clips also work)
- Lip balm (this makes the laminate smoothly move under the presser foot)

First cut the wallet pieces: (3) 8.5in wide x 2in high strips for the card pockets, (1) 8.5in wide x 11in high piece for the wallet body, (2) 2in wide by 3in high pieces for the closure strap and (1) 8.5in wide x 8in high piece for the bill pocket.  You can also cut (2) 1in x 1in pieces for reinforcing the snap areas.  I like to use scrap bits of stabilizer, but either will work.

Stitch the bias tape along the top edge of the pocket pieces.  Now line up the first strip, bias taped side up along the center of the 8.5in x 8in piece and clip on sides.  

Run a bit of lip balm along the bottom edges of the pocket.  This will prevent the laminate from sticking under the presser foot and is easy to just wipe away when done.  Stitch on 1/4" from the raw bottom of the strip:

Layer second pocket over the first, 1 inch down from the top of the first pocket and repeat with stitching the 2nd & 3rd pockets into place.  Next mark a vertical line down the center of the pocket cascade and topstitch.  That's now partitioned the pockets into 6 card sized spaces.

Now take the 8.5in x 11in rectangle and cut it in half widthwise so there are two 8.5in x 5.5in rectangles to make the body of the wallet.  Since there are so many rectangular pieces, I found it easier to cut this now so nothing would accidentally get mixed up as I worked.

Now fold the pocketed piece in half lengthwise with the wrong sides together, so there's only the pocketed section showing.  Lay this piece on top of one of the newly cut body pieces, lining up the bottom edges and then clipping together.  Baste together layers along sides and bottom 1/8 in from the raw edges.  This creates the bill pocket behind the card pockets.  

Now take the two strap pieces and, with right sides facing, stitch together with a 1/4 in seam allowance.  I curved the corners for a softer look, and then trimmed & clipped around them so they'd round when turned right side out.  Then run a quick dab of lip balm along the edge and topstitch:

Insert a 1in x 1in square for stabilizing and attach the male portion of the snap through the closure strap.  Clip strap to center of the right side of the pocketed piece.  Attach the female portion of the snap to the remaining wallet body piece (2in inward from edge and with a bit of stabilizer behind it too) and then lay piece face down over rest of wallet & clip together. The end with the snap should be on the left, while the piece below should have the strap on the right, so when it's turned right side out everything will be in the right spot.  

Stitch all the way around, leaving a 2 inch gap for turning on one of the width sides.  Again I rounded the corners as I stitched.  Clip around corners and turn right side out, poking out corners with a pencil or knitting needle.  Clip opening closed and after running a bit of lip balm around edge, topstitch.  

Insert cards & cash, snap closed and the wallet is ready to go.  And when the inevitable spills, kids and other mess makers get it dirty, just wipe clean and it's fresh as a daisy again!

I'm also sharing this project with my FAVE LINK PARTIES.
Click HERE to check them out!


  1. Super cute - that bird print is adorable and the bias tape color you chose is perfect - not too strong to compete with the print. Pretty AND practical. :-)

    1. Thanks so much - that's what I was going for and I'm so glad it worked:)

  2. That print on the fabric is super cute!! And it makes that wallet perfect!!

    1. Thanks Melanie! I loved this print & am happy I could come up with a project where I can use it everyday. If you haven't already, be sure to enter my giveaway & if you win you can snag some Urban Birds for yourself!

  3. It's such a sanity saver Amy - I'd so glad Deb from Laminates shared this trick with me and I can share it too!

  4. In love with this fabric! SO, so cute!

  5. Thanks for the sewing tutorial. Love seeing sewing projects with a purpose. Does the lip balm build up on your presser foot?

    1. No, it's easy to wipe off so it doesn't build up and since it's lubricant, it can't hurt anything either on the machine either.

    2. Ok cool. Thanks for the tip. Have you used a walking foot or rotary even foot with laminated fabric? I'll be sewing with it soon so will be testing out what's the best way to sew it.

  6. Thanks so much for sharing your post at our linky party this week!
    So cute! I love the bird pattern.

  7. I want it Cheryl!!!!

    Thanks so much for sharing this at The DIY Dreamer... From Dream To Reality! I can't wait to see what you link up tomorrow evening!

  8. CONGRATS!!!
    You have been featured at The DIY Dreamer!! Come on over and grab your featured button.. you deserve it!!

  9. So cute! I absolutely love this project, pinned for when I get a chance to look at laminated fabric.
    Thank you for the tutorial, especially the lip balm tip.

  10. Super cute!LOve the fabric you choose!Thanks so much for sharing the great tutorial.
    Have a wonderful week!
    Hugs from Portugal,

    Ana Love Craft

  11. I loved the tutorial, I'll try to make it! I live in Brazil and I have that fabric you used (but in a tiny pattern)!!! You blog is beautiful, very inspiring! xx

    1. That's great to hear and thank you so much for the sweet compliments. Would love to see it when you make it:)


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