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Vintage Triangle Coin Pouch: Renaissance Ribbons

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It starts flat, then folds up 1-2-3, and snaps front and back to create an adorable cone-shaped mini purse for coins and more. Project design credit goes to Tendance Ruban for re-inventing this lovely vintage design; our thanks to Renaissance Ribbons for bringing it to our attention and suggesting we do an update. We reverse-engineered the original sample to provide you with easy, step-by-step instructions and a downloadable pattern. For this multi-layer project with its origami fold, it's important everything stays flat. Our solution: the ribbons are stitched to the plain side of a layer of fusible interfacing. When the front and back are assembled and pressed, it activates the fusing and creates a tight, smooth bond. Stability is increased and layers are decreased.

When we're working with the eye-popping ribbons options within the Renaissance Ribbons collections, the hardest part is narrowing our choices – we want to pick them all! 

We finally settled on three samples, using ribbon pairings from Amy Butler, Sue Spargo and Tula Pink. There are so many other possible combos to build your own unique look. Check out the What's New section at Renaissance Ribbons for the latest beauties.


You can find the ribbons we used at fine in-store and online retailers everywhere, or shop directly from the Renaissance Ribbons by the spool or by the yard

For today's project, we used invisible thread for all our ribbon stitching. This is not mandatory, but is a nicer look against the ribbon. For best results, you may need to loosen your upper tension slightly. It's also a good idea to lengthen your stitch and sew at a slow and even pace. This type of thread does not stretch as well as regular thread and can break more easily under pressure, especially if it accidentally slides off the spool and wraps around the spool pin. Using a spool cap against the spool helps hold it in place on the pin, and again, going slowly and evenly helps the thread to feed correctly off the spool. Finally, always sew in the same direction along both sides of the ribbon. This will help prevent any shifting and puckering. If you'd prefer not to use invisible thread, make sure your all-purpose thread colors very closely match your ribbon, then take the time to re-thread as often as needed to maintain a perfect match. 

You'll notice we used pins to hold our ribbons in place. Another option would be to apply a little basting glue or strips of lightweight fusible web, such as Steam-A-Seam to the wrong side of the ribbon. Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions and test to make sure the ribbon can be easily stitched without the adhesive gumming up the needle. Some adhesives are not meant to be sewn through.

When folded, each coin purse forms an approximate 5" equilateral triangle.  

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

Amounts shown below are for ONE coin purse.

We used TWO beautiful jacquard ribbons for each coin purse. Our combinations are shown below. As mentioned, the mixing and matching potential is huge from within Renaissance Ribbons' amazing selection. The final amount required will depend on the width of the ribbon you select and if you stay with just two ribbons or increase the mix. We recommend starting with a full yard to insure the best look.




  • Scrap, ¼ yard or a Fat Quarter of a coordinating 44"+ wide quilting weight cotton for the lining; we used the following Fat Quarters:  
    Tula Pink "Midnight" Combination: Medallion in Blue from the Anna Maria Horner True Colors collection for Free Spirit Fabrics
    Sue Spargo "Gray" Combination: Flower in Gray from the Jenean Morrison True Colors collection for Free Spirit Fabrics
    Amy Butler "Belle" Combination: Crescent Bloom in Pink from the Anna Maria Horner True Colors collection for Free Spirit Fabrics
  • Scrap or ¼ yard of 20" + mid-weight fusible interfacing; we used Pellon 809 Décor Bond®
  • TWO size 16 snap fasteners; we used pearl head snaps
  • ONE snap setting tool; we used the SnapSetter from Snap Source
  • All purpose thread to match both fabric and ribbons and/or Invisible Thread in Clear
  • See-through ruler
  • Fabric pen or pencil
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
  • Seam gauge
  • Seam ripper
  • Straight pins

Getting Started

  1. Download and print out the Coin Purse Pattern.
    IMPORTANT: The pattern is ONE 8½" x 11" sheet. You must print the PDF file at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page. There is a guide rule on the page so you can confirm your final printout is to scale.
  2. Cut out the pattern along the solid line. 
  3. Using the pattern, cut ONE from the fusible interfacing. The interfacing should be fusible side down and the pattern should be right side up. 
  4. Flip the pattern so it is wrong side up and cut ONE from the lining fabric. 
    NOTE: We added detail about which way is up on the cutting instructions because your two finished pieces need to be mirror images of one another in order to fit together correctly. 
  5. Keep each ribbon as a full length; you will fussy cut it to best fit as shown below.

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

NOTE: All our cuts and steps are determined based on our selected ribbons. If you choose ribbons of different widths, you may need to adjust your measurements.

Create the exterior ribbon panel

  1. Place the pattern right side up on your work surface. 
  2. Place the interfacing piece on top of the pattern, non-fusible side up, aligning all sides. 
  3. Using a fabric pen or pencil, trace the dashed line (the seam allowance line) onto the interfacing. This provides a guideline for ribbon placement.
  4. Find the first ribbon. Align the edge of the ribbon along the drawn guideline, which means the ribbon will sit at a slight angle. The top end of the ribbon should be placed beyond the seam allowance by at least ¼" - it could go all the way to the edge of the interfacing or beyond as shown in the photo below; it will be trimmed back later. Pin (or fuse) the ribbon in place, then trim away at the bottom end to fit. 
  5. Butt the second ribbon up against the first and trim to fit as above.
  6. Repeat this alternating ribbon pattern across the interfacing, keeping the ribbons tight against one another. 
    NOTE: Depending on your ribbon widths, the final ribbon may extend over the opposite side's seam allowance guideline. This is okay. Aligning with the seam line at the starting side insures your angle is true as you move across the pattern; the width at the opposite end then "takes up the slack" and can vary. As mentioned above, the ribbon is trimmed after the final seam for the smoothest finish.

  7. Thread the machine with invisible thread in the top and invisible thread or standard bobbin thread in the bobbin or carefully select all-purpose thread to match each ribbon, re-threading as necessary as you move from ribbon to ribbon. 
  8. Edgestitch in place along both sides of each ribbon.
  9. Carefully work your way across, edgestitching each ribbon. Remember, you can use pins to secure the ribbons or a fusible seam tape. Also remember, as mentioned above, to stitch in the same direction along both sides of each ribbon. 

Sew front to back

  1. When all the ribbons are secured, find the lining. Place the two right sides together. The photo below shows the two layers side by side prior to placing right sides together.
  2. Re-thread the machine with regular thread in the top and bobbin. Using a ½" seam allowance, stitch front to back, leaving an approximate 3" opening along one long side. Remember to go slowly around the corners to maintain an even curve and to lock your seam at either side of the opening. 
  3. Trim back the ribbon side of the seam allowance to ¼" all around except at the opening. Leave the seam allowance at the opening the full ½".
  4. This extra width allows the ribbons to turn under completely to mask the opening.
  5. At the corners, also trim back the fabric side of the seam allowance and clip to ease the curved seam. 
    NOTE: For more about working with curves, see our full, step-by-step tutorial: Sewing Successful Curves
  6. Turn right side out through the opening. Gently push out and round the corners; a long, blunt tool, like a chopstick or knitting needle works well. 
  7. Press flat from the lining side, pressing in the seam allowance at the opening so it is flush with the sewn seam. This pressing activates the fusing on the interfacing, adhering front to back with a smooth, tight bond.
  8. Re-thread the machine with clear thread in the top (or thread to best match the ribbon) and thread to best match the lining in the bobbin. 
  9. Edgestitch all the way around the perimeter, adding an edge detail that also helps keep the layers very flat. This seam also closes the opening used for turning.

Insert snaps

  1. Fold up the piece. First starting with a halfway fold. 
  2. Then wrap all the way into a triangle. It is an even fold, but there are guidelines on the pattern piece to help if need be. 
  3. With the piece folded, and using the corner snap mark from the pattern as a guide, double-check the position for the corner point snap. 
  4. Once confirmed, unfold and insert the top half of the snap at the first point. This is done by setting the snap top into the bottom half of the snap-setting tool and pushing the prongs through to the back. 
  5. Place the back portion of the snap's top half into place. 
  6. Cover with the top of the setting tool and hammer in place. 
  7. The top half of the snap is set.

    NOTE: Although it features a slightly different tool, we do have a full step-by-step tutorial on inserting snaps. The process is slightly different than shown here, but the theory and the snap parts themselves are similar. If you are brand new to inserting snaps, you may find it helpful. 
  8. Re-fold the piece all the way into its finished triangle shape again to confirm the position for the bottom half of the snap. Mark the position with a fabric pen or pencil.
  9. Unfold the piece and insert the bottom half of the snap at the marked point, following the same method as above.
  10. Repeat to insert the second snap at the opposite corner point.
    NOTE: We opted for this set-then-mark process rather than showing the bottom snap positions on the pattern because you want the wrap to be as tight as possible when fully folded into a triangle. This wrap can vary based on the thickness of the ribbons as well as the lining fabric; it's better to confirm with your exact layers than to guess. You can see our final positioning in the photo below.


Project Design: Tendance Ruban
Project Re-engineer: Alicia Thommas 
Sample Creation: Debbie Guild


Comments (21)

Caroline from France said:
Caroline from France's picture

This is a lovely project. I made it last night; it didn't take long. I needed a small pouch to keep my rings in as I have to take them off when I play the organ in freezing churches.

I didn't use ribbon but just a lovely, single, piece of fabric which I sewed to the fusible interfacing with parallel lines spaced at an inch. The lining - with colours that match beautifully - is part of an old shirt of my husband's!

I didn't have any snaps, so I decided to machine sew the two sides of the triangle. This side stitching gives the pouch a certain rigidity which I like. I then used a small piece of Velcro for the closure.

This is such a nice little pouch that I shall be making some more as Christmas presents! 

Many years ago I made something called the "simple sewing companion" which is based on a similar folding pattern. Please let me know if I'm allowed to post a link to the pattern.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Caroline - We're so glad you love the project and were able to "make it your own" with some simple changes. Regarding the link; we don't traditionally re-direct to other's patterns. 

Jennifer Mayfield said:
Jennifer Mayfield's picture

Also sewed a small tab so I can attach it to a key chain. Thank you so much for this tutorial, I can't wait to make some more!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Jennifer - So glad you like our project and pattern. They are super fun little pouches - and thanks for letting folks know about the adaptations you did to make it your own. 

Jennifer Mayfield said:
Jennifer Mayfield's picture

I am making one of these right now and have decided to use KAM snaps on them to make it quick and easy!! 

Terri Wrightson said:
Terri Wrightson's picture

The quantities of ribbon (lengths) don't match.  The first one uses a yard each of 1.5" ribbon and 7/8" ribbon; the other two use a yard each of 7/8" and 5/8".  Does that leave a lot of waste for the first one?

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Teri - We prefer to give an optimum amount, which traditionally includes a bit extra for safety and to allow for fussy cutting if necessary. We realize people may not use the exact combinations we did. As we mention above: "The final amount required will depend on the width of the ribbon you select and if you stay with just two ribbons or increase the mix. We recommend starting with a full yard to insure the best look." If you are concerned about excessive waste, you could certainly draw out the "ribbon stripes" on the pattern at the widths you've selected and then measure your drawn stripes to get an exact length. 

Terri Wrightson said:
Terri Wrightson's picture

Maybe my eyes are fooling me but should you cut out the lining by reversing the pattern?  Also, when cutting out the fusible, be sure to cut it out glue side down.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Teri - You are correct, one piece must be the mirror image of the other. However you want to achieve it is fine: right side up on the wrong side of the fabric or wrong side up on the right side of the fabric. We had some notes in the steps above about the keeping track of the fusible, but perhaps it is not as clear as it should be. We've added a couple lines of copy into the steps above to help clarify it (I hope). Thanks!

JaneH. said:
JaneH.'s picture

I have made a couple of these.  I found using Wonder Tape on the ribbon instead of pinning is so much easier for me.  I also purchased the Dritz Snap maker but do not like it.  I am going back to the punch and hammer. These are very cute and can be done in an hour.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Jane - so glad this has been a successful project for you. Thanks for emphasizing this option for securing the ribbon. We do mention it above as an alternative to pins, but it's always nice to hear from someone who has used the alternative. Sorry you had trouble with the Dritz tool. Have you looked at our tutorial on it (linked below)? 


KathyAnne said:
KathyAnne's picture

I just received an order from Renaissance Ribbons and saw this project in a flyer that was enclosed. I would like to make this coin purse. However, when I click the link for the pattern, it opens a window in Safari -- despite that I have your site/the directions open in Firefox -- and the pattern does not print -- at all, correctly or incorrectly -- nor do I see a way to download the pattern and then print it! I would appreciate your help, thanks!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ KathyAnne - we have tested the pattern in several browsers and cannot replicate the problem you are having. The pattern link is opening within the browsers we are using and printing. We are so sorry that something is not working correctly for you. If you send a message to info@sew4home.com we can try to work with you directly to figure out a solution. 

KathyAnne said:
KathyAnne's picture

Thanks for responding. Last night after writing here, I Googled for a different link to your tutorial and from within that clicked on the pattern link -- this time it opened in my Firefox browser and allowed downloading as well. I'd never run into the other problem before. I'm excited about making this little coin purse!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ KathyAnee - well that's a mystery, but glad ou are on your way. Let us know how it turns out for you.

Rochelle @ eSheep Designs said:
Rochelle @ eSheep Designs's picture

Good that you repost classic tutorials because this one is a favourite of mine (I've made five)... not good, however, to rename the entire post because it results in a whole slew of dead links from people who previously linked to the original project. :-( 

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Rochelle - whenever we re-post we also re-direct, so if there was a older link out there, it will re-direct to the latest article. If you find something in particular that is not properly re-directing, please send a  note via info@sew4home.com and we'll troubleshoot.

Kay in WA said:
Kay in WA's picture

 I've made several of these for gifts (preschool teachers loved them) and they really were well-received! Fun to make, too.

Cynthia Maki said:
Cynthia Maki's picture

I knew I had seen this pattern before but couldn't remember where or what i was called. Thanks for putting it up again.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Cynthia - you bet -- there are lots of "classics" out the that we like to bring forward