Our ScrapBusters projects are especially designed to be fast and fun, and can easily be made with fabric and supplies from your stash. This handy little carrying case is modeled after the lanyards you often get at conferences or other large events. In fact, you could certainly use it for that or to hold small travel documents and ID. It’s also a perfect size for credit cards, cash, even your keys… all on a removable lanyard. Use it without the lanyard as a mini wallet inside a larger handbag or tote. The secret back pocket is held together with Velcro® so nothing will tumble out. Mix and match three fabrics to create just the right look. Making it for a gift? Think about choosing a fabric combo that highlights the recipient’s hobby or just his/her favorite colors.
If you have an embroidery machine, add a special design or a monogram on the outside. Quick, easy and fun!
The pocket finishes at approximately 3½” wide x 5⅝” high.
Sewing Tools You Need
- Sewing Machine and standard presser foot
Fabric and Other Supplies
- Scraps or THREE coordinating ¼ yard cuts of quilting weight fabric
- Scrap or ¼ yard of mid-weight fusible interfacing; we suggest Pellon Décor Bond
- ⅓ yard of ½” or wider ribbon to coordinate with exterior fabric; we used hot pink bias tape because we had some on hand, but would recommend you choose a thinner ribbon to make the final stitching easier
- ONE large metal grommet with setting tools; we used nickel
- ONE ½” swivel hook in a finish to match the grommet; we used nickel
- Scrap of sew-in Velcro®; we used white
- All purpose thread to match the fabric and ribbon; we used chocolate brown and hot pink
- See-through ruler
- Seam gauge
- Seam ripper
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Iron and ironing board
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Straight pins
- Fabric glue or fusible seam tape to hold Velcro®; optional
- Download the Lanyard Pattern. Print TWO copies.
IMPORTANT: This pattern consists of 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 to confirm your printout is to scale.
- Using the red arrows as your guide, butt together each pair of pattern pieces to make the full pattern piece. Do NOT overlap. Tape in place.
- Cut out one pattern along the solid line; this will be the pattern for your fabric.
- Cut out the second pattern along the dotted line; this will be the pattern for your interfacing.
- From the exterior and lining fabrics, use the assembled full pattern to cut ONE exterior piece and ONE lining piece.
- From the fabric for the lanyard, cut ONE 2″ x 44″ strip
- From the interfacing, cut the following:
Using the trimmed pattern, cut ONE piece
ONE 2″ x 44″ strip for the lanyard
NOTE: In can be hard to find such a long narrow strip of interfacing as a scrap. If you need to cut this piece as two pieces that is okay. You will simply butt together the pieces end to end when fusing in place.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
- Following manufacturer’s directions, fuse the interfacing strip to the wrong side of the lanyard fabric strip, making sure all the edges are flush.
NOTE: If you had to cut your interfacing as two pieces, make sure you butt them together; do not overlap as that will create a bump.
- Fold the lanyard in half, wrong sides together, and press to form a center crease.
- Fold in each raw edge ½” so they meet in the middle along the crease. Press well. Both ends are raw.
- Fold in half again along the original crease line, encasing the raw edges within this final fold. Your lanyard should now be ½” wide. Press well.
- Edgestitch along both sides approximately ⅛” from each edge.
NOTE: With its seven-piece fed dog system, our Janome machine is great at edgestitching, and going along each edge of this narrow lanyard was no problem. If your machine has trouble with edgestitching, you can get away with just one seam, up to ¼” from the edge. That is enough to close and secure the lanyard as one piece.
- Slip the swivel hook onto the finished lanyard. Let it slide to the middle, then align both the raw ends.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the raw ends together. Go back and forth several times to strengthen this seam. Trim back the seam allowance as close to the stitching as possible.
- Flip strap right side out. The little seam you just made should now be pointing inwards.
- Slide the swivel clip from the folded end to the seam end – so the clip’s ring is sitting right against the seam.
- Stitch straight across the lanyard through both layers, getting as close to the clip as you can. You are ‘locking’ the swivel clip into place. Again, go back and forth along the seam line several times to make sure the seam is secure.
NOTE: You could attach your Zipper foot to get in super close. We used our regular presser foot and were able to get within ½”.
- Trim your thread tails right up against the seam and set the finished lanyard aside.
- Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the lining piece, centering the interfacing. There should be ¼” of fabric extending beyond the interfacing on all sides.
- Place the exterior layer and the interfaced lining layer right sides together. Pin in place. Leave a 3″ opening along one long side.
- If necessary, re-thread your machine with thread to match your fabric. Using a ¼” seam allowance, stitch the exterior and lining together, remembering to lock your seam at either side of that 3″ opening. Trim the corners at a diagonal and clip the top curve, being careful in both cases to not cut into the seam.
- Turn the pocket right side out through the 3″ opening. Gently push out the bottom corners and the top curves with your finger or a long tool with a blunt end, such as a large knitting needle, chopstick or point turner.
- Press flat, making sure the raw edges of the opening are pressed in so they are flush with the sewn seam.
- Find the scrap of Velcro®. You need just a tiny piece. We cut ours from package of 1″ Velcro® squares, cutting one square in half.
- Refer to your template for placement help, but don’t rely on that alone. Fold and test prior to stitching the Velcro® in place. The Velcro® should be positioned on the lining side of the pocket. The top Velcro® piece should be centered side-to-side; its top edge should be 1⅜” down from the top of the pocket. Its bottom edge should be 3¾” up from the fold. The bottom piece of Velcro® should also be centered side-to-side; the bottom edge of this piece should be ⅜” up from the bottom of the pocket, and its top edge should be 3¾” down from the fold. When folded, the pocket depth should be 4⅝” measured from the fold to the top of the pocket, leaving a 1″ ‘tab’ at the top where the grommet will go.
NOTE: The marks on the template and our measurements should be used for placement HELP only. You should still fold and test your piece to be 100% sure everything will line up just right. This is because your seam might be slightly larger or smaller, and your combined fabric and interfacing might be a slightly different thickness than ours. Also, we’ve found when working with little pieces of Velcro® like these, it’s best to adhere them with a drop of fabric glue or a tiny piece of fusible seam tape to hold them in position to test that they match, as well as to hold them in place while you stitch.
- Stitch each piece of Velcro® in place with a box stitch.
- Flip over the pocket to the exterior side. You can see the little box of stitching holding each Velcro piece in place. You will cover this stitching with your ribbon.
NOTE: Why didn’t we stitch the Velcro® to just the lining prior to sewing the lining and the exterior together thus hiding the stitching? Because we wanted the strength of all three layers sewn together at the Velcro® points. If you only stitched the Velcro® to the lining, then every time you opened and closed the pocket, you would be likely to pull the layers apart and could eventually rip out the Velcro®.
- Cut the ribbon into TWO 4½” lengths. Place one length of ribbon over each box of stitching so it covers up the stitching evenly. The ribbon should extend beyond the pocket by about ½” on each side and be nice and straight across the pocket. Lightly pin in place.
- Re-thread your machine with thread in the top and bobbin to match the ribbon. Slightly lengthen the stitch.
- Topstitch the ribbon along both sides, staying as close as possible to the edge of the ribbon.
NOTE: You’ll find it easier to start and stop if you do not lock your stitch. Begin and end your stitching at the end of the ribbon rather than the edge of pocket. This way, you run up and over the pocket with a nice, clean seam across the front. The ends of the ribbon get tucked in, so no worries about the seam coming un-sewn.
- Fold the pocket along the fold line.
- Tuck the ends of the ribbon to the inside. Carefully align the sides of the pocket. Pin in place.
- Be especially careful that your tucked-in ribbon ends match front to back.
- Edgestitch through all the layers along both sides. Run your seams from the bottom fold up to what is now the top edge of the pocket. This closes the original opening you’d made for turning as well as creates the actual pocket.
NOTE: At the point of the ribbon, you are sewing through a lot of layers. As usual, our Janome powered right through. But if your machine stutters, stop with your needle in the down position at the bottom of the ribbon and, using the handwheel, handcrank across the ribbon. Stop on the opposite side of the ribbon, and engage the foot pedal to finish the seam.
- Mark the placement for the grommet at the center of the top curved ‘tab’. The open center of the grommet should be approximately ⅜” from the top finished edge.
- Following manufacturer’s directions or our handy step-by-step tutorial, insert the grommet. We consider the official front of our lanyard to be the plain side and the pocket opening to be the back. Therefore, we inserted the long part of the grommet from the front to the back, popped on the top, and hammered it in place.
- Clip the swivel hook through the grommet to attach the lanyard.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation: Liz Johnson