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ScrapBusters: Clean and Simple Clutch

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It's time for another installment in one of our favorite series: ScrapBusters! This time, the scraps you need are a bit larger, but I'm bettin' you still have lots of fun fabrics from which to choose to create this cute clutch. We are normally very diligent about telling you exactly which fabrics we used for our samples, however, this time around, we found our pieces in what we fondly call our 'UFO' bin: Unidentified Fabric Options. My only direction for your choosing is to use a décor weight or better for both layers in order to get an appropriate crispness. And, a print for the outside with a coordinating solid for the inside is a classy combo. The finishing touch is a little bit of bling on the front as an accent over the magnetic clasp. Ours is a broken rhinestone earring, but a fancy button or rescued broach would also work well. You just need a couple open points on it to allow you to sew the bauble in place.

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

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  • Scrap or ½ yard of décor weight fabric for the exterior
  • Scrap or ½ yard of décor weight fabric for the interior and pocket
  • Scrap or ½ yard medium weight fusible fleece
    NOTE: The fusible fleece gives the clutch a soft feel; if you would prefer something super crisp, you could substitute a heavyweight fusible interfacing.
  • Scrap or ⅛ yard of ½" wide ribbon; we used a brown velvet
  • One magnetic purse clasp
  • All purpose thread to match fabrics
  • Button or other "bauble" for the front accent; we used a broken earring
  • See-through ruler
  • Fabric pencil
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
  • Seam ripper
  • Seam gauge
  • Straight pins

Getting Started

  1. From the exterior fabric, cut ONE 11" wide x 16" high rectangle.
  2. From the interior fabric, cut the following:
    ONE 11" wide x 16" high rectangle
    ONE 9" wide x 7" high rectangle
  3. From the fusible fleece, cut ONE 10" wide x 15" high rectangle.

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

  1. Following manufacturer's instructions, fuse the 10" x 15" fleece to the wrong side of the interior 11" x 16" rectangle. Center the fleece on the fabric so there is ½" of fabric showing on all four sides.
  2. Press well from both sides and set aside.
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  1. Fold the 7" x 9" rectangle in half right sides together so it is now 3½" x 9".
  2. Pin along both sides and across the bottom, leaving an approximately 3" opening along the bottom for turning.
  3. Using a ½" seam allowance, stitch along both sides and across the bottom, remembering to leave that 3" opening along the bottom for turning. Make sure you back tack the seam at both sides of the opening.
  4. Clip all the corners at a diagonal, being careful not to cut into your seam.
  5. Trim the seam back to ¼" except at the opening; leave the full seam allowance at the opening.
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  6. Turn right side out through the opening. Use a long, blunt-end tool, like my fave - a chopstick, to square the corners.
  7. Press well, turning in the raw edges of the opening so they are flush with the sewn seam.
  8. Place the finished pocket on the right side of the fused interior piece, centering the pocket in the middle. The bottom of the pocket (the seamed edge) should be 5½" up from the bottom raw edge. The top of the pocket (the folded edge) should be 7½" down the the top raw edge. And, the panel should sit 1½" in from each side raw edge. Pin the pocket in place along both sides and across the bottom.
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  9. Using your fabric pencil, draw a vertical line through the center of the pocket panel.
  10. Edgestitch the pocket in place along both sides and across the bottom. This will close the opening used for turning.
  11. Using the drawn line as your guide, stitch through the center of the pocket panel to create two pockets of equal size.
  12. We added our Sew4Home label just above the top of the pocket.

Finger loop, clasp and final assembly

  1. Cut the ribbon to a 4" length.
  2. Fold in half, wrong sides together and raw edges aligned.
  3. Place the loop along the left side, just above the corner of the pocket. This position is approximately 10" up from the bottom raw edge (10" from the TOP of the ribbon loop). The raw edges of the ribbon and the fabric are flush and the ribbon loop is facing in towards the middle of the pockets.
  4. Pin in place and then machine baste in place.
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  5. Mark the placement for one side of the magnetic clasp. It should be positioned at the center and 1½" down from the top raw edge.
  6. Follow manufacturer's instruction to insert this first half of the clasp. Essentially, you press the prongs into the fabric to create an indent.
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  7. Then, using small, sharp scissors, carefully snip through the layers - just enough to allow the prongs to push through. Attach the guard to the back and bend the prongs into place.
  8. Your interior piece is now complete.
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  9. Place the finished interior piece right sides together with the exterior piece. Pin all around, leaving an approximately 3" wide opening along the center of one side for turning.
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    NOTE: The position of the opening for turning is important. It has to be in the middle of one side in order to be secured later when you make the side seams.
  10. Using a ½" seam allowance, stitch along both sides and across the bottom, remembering to leave that 3" opening along the side for turning. Make sure you back tack the seam at both sides of the opening.
  11. Clip all the corners at a diagonal, being careful not to cut into your seam.
  12. Turn right side out through the opening. Use a long, blunt-end tool to square the corners.
  13. Press well, turning in the raw edges of the opening so they are flush with the sewn seam.
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  14. Now it's time to attach the opposite half of the magnetic clasp. Fold the bottom of the clutch up into position. What was the bottom seamed edge should now be folded up so it is in line with the top of the ribbon loop, creating what will be the clutch's center pouch. The width of the 'panel' should be 4¾".
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  15. Snap the opposite half of the magnetic clasp onto the half that is already secured on the top of the clutch.
  16. Fold the top of the clutch down into position. The edge should be ¼" from the bottom fold. In order to get this ¼" reveal, the width of the 'panel' should be 5".
  17. As you did above, press the prongs into the fabric to make an indent and, pulling the clasp apart, follow the same steps to insert the opposite half.
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  18. The prongs will come through to the inside. 
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  19. To prevent the prongs catching on anything or poking a finger, I whipstitched a ribbon scrap over the prongs.
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    NOTE: "Okay S4H," You say. "Why didn't you just put that second half of the clasp into the exterior piece way back when, before sewing front to back? Then you wouldn't have to hide the prongs!" Two reasons: 1) I wanted to be super-duper sure the two parts of the clasp would match up, which is hard to do with a folded-up piece like our clutch, because you are working on two opposite sides and the half on the top of one piece must match up with the half on the bottom of the other piece. You have to rely on very exact measuring... and truth be told, I was just not willing to bank on my measuring being spot-on. 2) Even with a décor weight, I would have had to attach the clasp through a single layer of fabric. I could have put some interfacing at that point to help stiffen the fabric, and this would have been my go-to solution had it not been for Reason #1. So... I went for the option of being able to anchor the clasp through three layers and to line everything up perfectly. If your fabric is heavier and/or your measuring pin-point accurate... you could insert BOTH sides of the clasp prior to sewing interior to exterior, thus eliminating the need for the ribbon cover up.
  20. Re-fold the bottom up 4¾" and pin along both sides. It is very important that your side edges are flush. Pin in place.
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  21. Edgestitch both sides, starting beyond the top fold by about ¼" and back-tacking to secure.
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  22. Re-fold the top panel down 5" into position, giving you that ¼" reveal along the bottom, and allowing the clasp to click together.
  23. Position your 'accent bauble' directly over the top of the clasp.
  24. Stitch it in position much like you would a button, but only go through the top two layers; don't let your stitching go through to the interior fabric. This careful stitching will allow the inside to look nice and neat.
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Project Design: Alicia Thommas      
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Liz Johnson

Other machines suitable for this project include the Laura Ashley Innov-is NX800 and the Husqvarna/Viking Emerald 118.



Comments (17)

Suzie Utoozie said:
Suzie Utoozie's picture
I love this. I am always saving things from the trash. Bits of necklesses, rings, and things bright and shinny. I also have tons of bits of fabric just the right size for this project. I lead a table of 8 women at a bible study once a week and I am always looking for fun things to give them. This would be great.
Katzber said:
Katzber's picture
I use a LOT of magnetic snaps and have found that they stay in place better when there is a small piece of felt (wide enough for the prongs to go through) between the snap washer the fabric. I also bend the prongs in toward the middle. Do these 2 things and the snap will not pull loose when you're tugging to open the bag.

Also, the inside and outside fabrics will separate when opening this bag. I put a strip of heat-N-bond on the wrong side of the lining and press it after the bag is turned right side out.
gquilter said:
gquilter's picture
Really nice project! Thanks for the tutorial! Will be making some of these soon.
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture
@ Kathleen Ann - As I mention above, you only sew through the top layer and the batting. Then, to knot, I slid my needle all the way under the bauble, picked up a tiny bit of fabric, pulled the needle out, looped the thread back on itself - just like a regular knot, and then gentle pulled it through so the knot fastened under the bauble. I repeated this three times and then used a small pair of scissors to reach in and clip the threads.
Kathleen Ann said:
Kathleen Ann's picture
Love it. But I'm always puzzled on how to hide knots when attaching something like that bauble. What's your trick?
PattiMcc said:
PattiMcc's picture
smilies/cheesy.gifCan't wait to use up some of my MANY srraps of fabric. So cute, thank yousmilies/cheesy.gif
sign and sew said:
sign and sew's picture
I'm having a wedding shower for my future daughter in-law. Last August I hosted a shower for my daughter, I made purses as gifts. This will be a wonderful gift to some lucky winner of a game. Thank you for the idea.
gmitchel said:
gmitchel's picture
You folks always have such great ideas. Excellent scrap buster! We are having an employee craft fair in April and these will definitely be in my mix. Thank you so much S4H. smilies/kiss.gifsmilies/kiss.gif
Amy L DeCesare said:
Amy L DeCesare's picture
This looks really cute...will have to try it soon. I love making clutches, too!
Cathy Parkaer said:
Cathy Parkaer's picture
Yes, great, I just have the fabric pieces to do this. Awesome.
Sequana said:
Sequana's picture
Just about the time I think I have seen every way to make a clutch there is, another one pops up. Thx. smilies/smiley.gif