Sunday, July 21, 2013

Has Anybody Seen My Wallet?

I have a hard time sewing things for guys. Not that I can't do it, but that I have no vision when it comes to it. I can't visualize non-clothing items that guys would appreciate (beyond a toiletry bag or something). So when a co-worker asked if I could make a wallet for her grandson I was kind of "Okaaaayyyy" about it because it's just not my usual sewing genre. I tried to find a few ideas online but ended up borrowing my dad's for measurements and so on.

I had some measurements written up for a nifty wallet, and then I remembered the limitations of a home sewing machine when confronted with layers and layers of bulk. There was no way it was going to happen so I had to redo my sketch (and my math--grrrr). In the end I came up with something I'm pretty pleased with.

I used this amazing interfacing for these. It really makes the fabric stiff, but creases can iron right out (or right in, as I pressed the dickens out of it so it would fold in half). It made the outside almost feel slippery, though. No matter the tension, needle length, presser foot, or what side was facing up I could not get the top-stitching on the camo side right. It irks me but it's honestly the best it can be so it'll have to do.

Making the card pockets was pretty fun. It's just a few accordion pleats. The pockets will hold one card or a few, and the money pocket is sized just right for those big bills peeking out up there :)  It still folds up nice and slim, though.

I've never seen an adult male carry a wallet that wasn't leather (and I can't say I favor these for a young adult male) but that's who they're for. I have no idea how long they will hold up as a wallet is a high-stress item, but I did what I could and they'll just have to do.

I already figured out what I would do differently next time, but they're the kinds of things that only make a difference to the maker and not to the user so I won't belabor the details (but it deals with layers and interfacing, in case you were wondering). The first one took me a while to do as I had to figure everything out, but the second one went together in under half an hour. These could be really cute Christmas gifts for the young 'uns in just the right fabrics. And they hardly take any fabric to put together. I waaaaay overestimated what I would need and now I could cover my house in the leftovers and shield it from military reconnaissance teams.

If you're wondering, this is the interfacing I used. I haven't found an alternative yet that's available at a place like Joann's, so I use what I have sparingly for just the right project. Actually, this is the first project, but the other one has been living in my head and in my sketchbook since before Christmas and this stuff will kick butt when I eventually get around to it. If I were to make this for a kid, though, I'd probably go with a stiff craft-weight interfacing from Joann's instead of this fancier stuff (which is delightful but limited in availability).

Do you sew stuff for the male species? What kinds of things do you get into? I'd like some inspiration, please :)


  1. What an excellent job you did there! He will love it. Perfect fabric too. My grandson would love to have one of those!!! Hmmm...Maybe I should make him one.
    I need to get busy on my Christmas gifts. Any and all ideas are appreciated!
    xo Kris

  2. Really neat. You did a brilliant job. The only man thing I've made is a tablet holder for my son.

  3. Very very cool. Am dying to try that interfacing you speak of! Sewing for dudes is seriously rough -- I agree. I agree with Maria that a tablet holder is a good idea. I did a laptop sleeve for my husband and he loves it. Ditty bags, grilling aprons, and shoe bags (for traveling) are just about the only other things I can think of. I really don't think homemade looks good for guys' clothes unless you have an industrial machine or live in a hippie commune. : )

  4. Woo Hoo! Four of my 5 children have birthdays in August and September. Four of my 5 children are girls. I decided to make all of the girls handbags for their birthdays. And then there is my son...he doesn't grill, he doesn't travel. He does have a laptop and an ipad mini but bought them both with cases. A wallet is the perfect gift! Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. Nice one!! My tip for sewing for guys: fold over messenger bag. It's one for the hipsters, but it really gets appreciated!

  6. That is a fun wallet! I've always had the too much bulk problem when I'm trying to work out a wallet pattern too... so far I haven't succeeded at sewing one because of that. Yours looks really good though! I'm with you on the 'men are hard to sew for' front. I usually end up with handmade gift that isn't sewn... like food. =)

  7. WOW!Beth impeccable job! The pockets are just amazing! Who cares about top stitching when overall it looks amazing! and without having a pattern handy! He's gonna love it. As for inspiration it's really limited since I've only sewn an ipad cover, and for a little guy a pair of pants (which did not fit!bummer). I love how it turned out! You should be really proud!!
    xx (happy week!!!)

  8. I need to make myself a replacement purse. I've worked out all the things for the card pockets etc, then balked on actually getting round to making it (that'll be the layers too, although I know my machine can handle it) Maybe I need to try now, yours came out fab!



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