This tutorial will require some hand sewing. You may opt to avoid that by edge stitching around the perimeter of the clutch with your machine, but it won’t look as pretty. Sometimes sewing life requires sacrifices and that’s okay, I understand.
- 2 fat quarters or two fabric scraps measuring 15 inches x 9.5 inches wide
- scrap for pocket, about 5 x 7 inches wide (will be folded in half)
31 inches of 3/4 inch ribbon, velvet-y preferred
- D-Ring set 3/4″ size
- Embroidery floss, hand sewing needles, thimble (maybe), cutting tools, chalk or fabric marker, ruler, pins, sewing machine
NOTES: seam allowances are approximately 3/8″, the dimensions allow space for the kindle. It is not a snug fit, you may adjust to your preference.
You could use this as an actual purse-y clutch by backing the velveteen with an iron-on medium-heavy weight interfacing so it won’t look so floppy.
Finished dimensions are approximately 5.5″ x 9″ x 0.6″; for reference, a KindleFire measures 4.7″ x 7.5″ x 0.45″. Mine is a little loose fitting but I left room to stash a small moleskine; you can easily trim it up to fit more snuggly.
If you haven’t already done so, trim the inner and outer fabrics to measure 15″ tall x 9.5″ wide. Now wrap it around your kindle to make sure that it fits. Decide if you prefer an angled corner overwrap (see right, below) or a squared flap (see left, below). Make sure you like your ribbon (of course, you might decide to do a button or magnetic snap closure instead).
Now place both fabrics face down, if you are keeping the edges square skip to the next step. If the fabric is directional and/or if you prefer a certain section to be the outer envelope flap you should identify it – this will be the area where you will want to create angled corners.
Referring to the photos as a guide – on the long edge of the fabric measure 2 inches up from the corner and mark with chalk. On the short side of the fabric, measure 2 and 3/8 inch from the edge and mark with chalk. Draw a line between the two points. Trim along the line. Repeat on the other side.
Place the lining fabric right side up. Fold up the bottom edge 6 inches. Finger press the bottom to create a crease for a visual reminder of where the Kindle will rest along the bottom.
Now draw a guide for where the pocket will be sewn. Measure about 4.5 – 5 inches down from the upper edge, mark with chalk. From the long sides of the clutch fabric, measure about 2.5″ in from either side and mark.
Create an interior pocket with the 5 x 7″ scrap by folding it in half (right sides together). Stitch around the open edges but leave a 1.5 inch opening for turning the pocket right side out. After stitching – turn it right side out.
Gently press the corners outward with a soft-pointed tool like a chopstick, knitting needle or soft pencil) and iron flat. Now stitch along the folded edge of the fabric pocket, this will be the top of the pocket opening and stitching it will lend it structure.
With the pocket in the placement area, sew around the short right, bottom and left sides of the pocket to secure it to the lining.
Realign the fabrics. Pin, if desired (velveteen can shift, mine did).
Now sew around the perimeter, you will need to leave a 3 inch opening along the middle of one of the long edges for turning the fabric right side out.
Carefully clip corners and turn the fabric right side out. Gently press the corners out as you did for the pocket. Press the clutch panel flat with an iron on the lining side. You may wish to push the lining fabric inside slightly so it doesn’t show much from the outside.
Hand sew the opening closed using a blind-stitch technique.
Now for the hand-sewing skills! Brush up on your blanket stitch with this helpful video. With your embroidery floss and needle sew the folded edges on both sides of the clutch together as pictured below (my stitch length is about 1/4″ an inch both between stitches as well as seam allowance).
Time to sew the velvet strap! Slide both d-rings to the middle of the ribbon, with chalk, mark half an inch down from the fold, as pictured. Align the ribbon edges together and sew across the short edge, about half an inch down from the center fold (D-ring chamber) and around each side of the ribbon. Don’t do anything within the defined D-ring zone. You’ll just get angry.
Place the buckle on the top outer flap of the clutch, measure 1.5 inches from the edge and 4.5 inches from the sides, this is the centering point. We will line up the stitch marks from the D-ring chamber with the 1.5 inch mark and place it at the mid-point of the bag. With the same embroidery thread use a backstitch to secure the strap to the bag (as pictured).
Here’s how that looks attached:
You can be done now and admire your work or you can continue blanket stitching along the front flap of the bag.
Step back and arrange your kindle for admiration.