Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Accordi-anna Wallet

YEARS ago (and I do mean that in all caps) I was reading a post on one of my favorite blogs. It was for an accordion wallet with a fancy frame and everything. No pattern was available then, much to my chagrin. When I was out Christmas shopping for donation gifts for the church Christmas tree (one of the tags I pulled from the tree said 'ladies' wallet') I figured I'd kill two birds with one stone. I bought an extremely similar wallet so I could take notes and measurements and figure out how to make my own. I even ordered some frames (three, to be exact) because I always have high hopes for fast work and successful projects.

Obviously, as you've never seen me post anything of the sort, the notes are somewhere, and the frames have been wrapped in tissue paper, and I've been using this wristlet I made as my wallet. But a few weeks ago the pattern was released. And now I have a fun new wallet.

It irks me that I didn't center the diamonds with the little flip-lock part. My sister gave me this pink fabric several years ago for my birthday. I've been hoarding it ever since, just waiting for the perfect project. Something that wasn't going to end up being overly pink and foofy, but that would still be pink and fun.

I used an interfacing called decovil for this. It is definitely strange but awesome. It's stiff, and holds its shape, but at the same time is supple while being firm. It's a bit of an interfacing paradox. It's squishy but not really, but is. Whatever it is, it gets fused to the exterior fabric and is what gives the wallet it's body and structure.

I love how there's a lot going on in there but it folds up to this nice, slim little thing that isn't bulky at all.

I was hoping for a polka dot lining, but I had none stashed, and Joann's had none either, so I went with this black and white gingham. I'm really glad there were no polka dots. I love this. It's not perfectly straight, but that's perfectly fine. It's my wallet and I like it that way. I just realized I meant to switch out for pink thread but obviously forgot--oh well.

There were two options for the guts--a four pocket and a three pocket. I went for the three pocket version as too many pocket options leads to me being less organized.

The frame is glued on to the bag, but then also screwed on. Oddly, screwing in those bits was my favorite part of the whole thing.

One thing I was proud of myself for doing is checking my frame. The pattern calls for a 7 1/2 inch frame. Normally I'd have made this without considering measurements (and cursed a blue streak after the fact), but something told me I'd better check. Good thing, because my frame is 8 inches wide. I simply added that half inch difference to the cutting measurements and everything was pretty much fine (I wasn't as careful as I should have been towards the end, which made this the teeeeeeniest bit off, and also led to me having to hand sew the bias tape instead of machine sewing it).

Other than adjusting the size I made one other modification. Even though my wallet felt sturdy it didn't feel sturdy enough--I wanted something a little bit more rigid. So I cut two small pieces of plastic canvas and slid them in between the layers before I glued the frame on. Now it feels just right. And I feel kind of fancy using it. Like a real grown-up, with card pockets and everything.


  1. It's a beeooty! I really don't have the patience for fiddly projects like this. Go you!

    1. It honestly wasn't terrible! I think the second one would go much more quickly, but I'm not exactly in a hurry yet to see. The worst part was the bias tape, but it would have gone better if I wasn't in such a rush to finish.

  2. Those wallets seem to be in this spring. I got a flyer from a quilt shop, yesterday, with that frame and a different designer's pattern for a similar wallet.
    I love the pink and black, looks kind of vintage. Good job.

  3. oh wow, that is so fab!! I love it. I'd be interested to see what the frame looks like.

  4. That is one gorgeous wallet! I bet you will get lots of comments from cashiers when you use it. The black thread makes it look really professional. Lovely job!

  5. How fun! I love the pockets inside. I've never seen a wallet with a frame before... I rather like the idea!

  6. Thanks so much for sharing your lovely wallet. I've made several Rozys (Rozies?), but liked the idea of sides and having only three compartments (unlike the Grand Diva, for example). After getting my bearings with all the 16th" measurements (?!?), I ran into a brick wall trying to make the zipper piece. Nothing I did got me the shape that I was looking for, and her directions aren't terribly helpful. I wrote to her asking for assistance, but she hasn't answered.
    If you have the time, would you mind walking me through how those two long pieces of zip pocket end up being a closed pocket at one end and a simple divider at the other?
    Many, many thanks!!

    1. Hi Peg--It's a touch odd but it does work. You insert the zipper as you would if you were making a zipped coin purse. Sew the bottom right sides together through all layers at once, and turn right side out (the sides are not sewn so this is easy). One of the instructions tells you to sew a line of stitching through all the layers of the pocket maybe halfway up or thereabouts. From the zipper to this line of stitching is the zipper compartment, and the stitching to the bottom is the divider. When you insert this into the gusset pieces, the part with the zipper will go into one of the gusset folds. Then you'll fold the bottom of the zip pocket up on that line of top-stitching you did, and insert that part into another gusset fold. I hope this helps!

    2. Also---pressing is really important in this step for crisp, flat seam.

  7. PS: Love your idea about the plastic canvas! I was going to start doing that with my Rozies, too.



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