Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Iron Craft Challenge 10: Fat Quarter Zipper Wristlet/Party Purse!

This week's Iron Craft challenge was to create something using a single fat quarter (other non-fabric materials allowed).  I didn't have any fat quarters on hand, but since they measure about 18" x 22", I made sure the amount of fabric I used did not exceed that.  I have been thinking a lot about law school graduation (by which I mean obsessing), and I plan on having a good time on graduation night.  Dancing, drinking, karaoke-ing?  Who knows, but I decided a tight-strapped wristlet is essential if all of my necessities (ID, cash, cards, phone . . .) are going to make it home with me at the end of the night.  Like mittens on a string, I figure the wristlet will keep my stuff together while my mind is otherwise occupied.

I started with some of my husband's old dress pants (out of the same stash I made my draft dodgers out of).  I cut four rectangles, each 4 3/4" x 6 1/2", and stabilized two of them with interfacing.  I rounded the bottom corners of each rectangle.  I sewed the two stabilized piece together, wrong sides facing out; I stitched along one short side, along the bottom and up the other side, leaving the top open.  I repeated the process with the other pair of rectangles.  I turned the stablilized layer rightside out, then tucked the other layer inside.  I used seam tape to finish the raw top edge.  Using a small, silver belt buckle I bought as part of a lot in a thrift store, I created a leather strap.

It took me a while to decide on the adornment for the outside.  I thought about some sort of flower (although I didn't want to break the Iron Craft rules by using more fabric) or maybe some buttons.  I wanted something more dramatic, though--I'm only going to graduate from law school once, after all.  I love the look of the zipper details that I've been seeing on the necklines of dresses and shirts.  I bought a heavy duty jacket zipper with silvery teeth and unzipped it before starting.  I basically just curled, looped, and folded the zipper until I got a shape that I liked, then hand-stitched it.  I made the entire zipper detail before attaching it to the purse.  I tacked it into place with hot glue, then stitched it down.  I haven't decided on a closure for the top of the purse, but I'm leaning toward a simple invisible zipper.

I love the way this wristlet turned out and I can't wait to use it.  This process could also be used to make a camera case, small makeup bag, or a coin purse.  Also, the zipper detail could be slapped on about anything (shirt, cuff, headband?).  Be creative and enjoy!


  1. the zipper detail is fabulous! i've seen zipper flowers a lot, but i really like the freehand design you did so much better!

  2. Thanks! I was a little intimidated to try it, but it turned out to be much easier than expected.

  3. This is fantastic! Great job!