Use your favorite fabrics to make the perfect wallet. I love the quilted exterior that reminds me of designer wallets from Vera Bradley, Coach, or Chanel!
UPDATE: This blog post has been converted to an optional PDF that’s optimized for printing. Find it here.
The interior of this wallet pattern has 8 card slots (facing the center of the wallet so your cards won't fall out), a zippered coin pocket, plus two pockets big enough for flat bills or a cell phone.
There is also a vinyl pocket (with a snap) that is the right size for a phone or small notebook with paper.
I put two d-ring tabs on my wallet, so I could attach a cross-body strap. Alternatively, you could use only 1 d-ring and attach a wrist strap, or no strap at all.
The exterior of the wallet is quilted for that luxe designer look. I used 2 fat quarters of fabric for my wallet exterior and 2 fat quarters for the interior. My fabrics were all from the Rifle Paper Co. Le Fleurs collection, except for the fabric that I used for my binding - Penny Arcade by Kim Kight.
Are you ready to make your most beautiful (and functional) wallet ever? Let’s sew!
You will need:
2 fat quarters of fabric for the wallet exterior
2 fat quarters of fabric for the wallet interior
a 10’’ x 8’’ piece of flexible foam interfacing (I used ByAnnie Soft and Stable) or fusible fleece interfacing
a 3 1/2’’ x 2 1/'2’’ piece of the same stabilizer listed above
1 zipper, at least 6’’ long
1 magnetic snap closure
2 d-rings with a 1/2’’ opening
a 4 1/2’’ x 8’’ piece of vinyl (can be purchased in the home decor section of the fabric store, from Amazon, or re-purposed from the packaging that bedding, curtains, pet beds, and lots of other things come in)
a plastic snap for the exterior pocket - optional (my snap is from Kam Snaps - I lost my Kam snap setter and replaced it with the Dritz one - which is the same and works with all my snaps)
Creative Grids Curved Corners ruler or small cup with a 3’’ diameter
pencil, fabric marking pen, and/or hera marker
pins and Wonderclips
You’ll make the strap separately. Here’s my tutorial for bag and purse straps.
For the wallet exterior, cut:
1 main rectangle 10’’ x 8’’ (floral fabric)
2 tab closure pieces 3 1/2’’ x 2 1/2’’ (floral fabric)
For the exterior vinyl pocket, cut:
1 rectangle 4 1/4’’ x 8’’ (popcorn fabric)
a 4 1/2’’ x 8’’ piece of vinyl
For the d-ring tabs (optional), cut:
2 d-ring tab rectangles 2 1/2’’ x 2’’ - or as many as desired (popcorn fabric)
For the binding, cut:
2 1/4’’ strips cut on the bias, joined to make 38’’ of bias binding (popcorn fabric)
Tip: You could cut a 10’’ square of fabric and use my Continuous Bias Binding video tutorial to make approximately 42’’ of bias binding, 2 1/4’’ wide.
For the wallet interior, cut:
1 interior rectangle 10’’ x 8’’
For the card pockets, cut:
1 rectangle 9’’ x 8’’
1 rectangle 8’’ x 8’’
1 rectangle 7’’ x 8’’
1 rectangle 6’’ x 8’’
1 rectangle 5’’ x 8’’
For the zippered coin pocket, cut:
4 rectangles 5’’ x 8’’
Make the Quilted Wallet Exterior:
1. Place the 10’’ x 8’’ main piece of fabric on the piece of flexible foam stabilizer of the same size (wrong side of fabric against the interfacing). Baste around the edges with a long stitch, about 1/8’’ from the edge.
Tip: this looks difficult, but it’s actually very easy! Here’s a how-to video I made.
2. Place the 10’’ x 8’’ interior rectangle against the other side of the stabilizer (wrong side of fabric against the interfacing). Baste around the edges about 1/8’’ from the edge.
Note: If you are using fusible fleece interfacing instead, you can fuse the fabric to one side and machine baste the fabric to the other side.
3. Quilt the wallet exterior, as desired. I used straight vertical lines about 1 1/2’’ apart.
4. Use the 1 1/2’’ radius corner on the Creative Grids Curved Corner Ruler (I love this ruler), or a small cup with a 3’’ diameter opening to round all 4 corners of the piece.
Make the Tab with a Snap Closure:
1. Place one 3 1/2’’ x 2 1/2’’ fabric piece on top of the matching piece of stabilizer (wrong side of the fabric against the stabilizer) and baste around the edges.
2. Install one half of the magnetic snap to this piece, centered and 3/4’’ - 1’’ above the bottom edge (3/4’’ if the snap is 1/2’’ in diameter, 1’’ if the snap is 3/4’’ in diameter). Follow to the manufacturer’s instructions (or install it like I did here - no extra interfacing is needed).
3. On the wrong side of the remaining 3 1/2’’ x 2 1/2’’ piece of fabric, use a pencil or fabric marker to mark the stitching lines as follows:
mark 1/4’’ from 3 edges (as seen in photo above)
use a small spool of thread placed against the lines to draw curved corners (see above)
4. Place the two 3 1/2’’ x 2 1/2’’ pieces right sides together, with the snap and the marked curves at the same end. Pin.
5. Stitch around the piece along the marked lines. Trim the seam allowance with pinking shears or clip the curves with small scissors.
6. Turn the piece right side out and press.
Make the Vinyl Pocket and Optional D-ring Tabs:
1. Fold the 4 1/4’’ x 8’’ of fabric in half lengthwise (wrong sides together) and clip the raw edges to the top edge of the 4 1/2’’ x 8’’ piece of vinyl.
2. Stitch the binding piece to the vinyl with a 5/8’’ seam allowance.
3. Wrap the wide binding around to the other side of the vinyl. Clip in place. Stitch close to the folded edge.
4. To make the optional d-ring tabs, fold each 2’’ x 2 1/2’’ piece in half (matching the 2 1/2’’ edges) and press. Open and fold the raw edges to the center, press. Fold in half again and press for a 1/2’’ x 2 1/2’’ folded strip.
5. Topstitch close to each long edge.
Set the vinyl pocket and d-ring tabs aside for now.
Make the Card Pockets:
1. Press the 5 pieces cut for the card pockets in half with the 8’’ edges together (wrong sides facing). This should make:
1 piece 4 1/2’’ x 8’’
1 piece 4’’ x 8’’
1 piece 3 1/2’’ x 8’’
1 piece 3’’ x 8’’
1 piece 2 1/2’’ x 8’’
2. Lay the largest piece on your work area with the second largest piece on top - bottom edges aligned.
3. Use a pencil or fabric marking pen to draw a horizontal line 2 1/8’’ above the bottom edges. Pin all layers together.
4. Sew across the line that you drew.
5. Fold up the top and bottom layers of fabric. Trim away the 2 inner layers to reduce bulk. Leave only about 1/4’’.
6. Fold the top and bottom layers back down, as shown above.
7. Place the next largest pocket piece on top, bottom edges aligned. Draw a line 1 5/8’’ above the bottom edges. Pin. Stitch along the line. Fold up the top and bottom edges of fabric and trim away the center two layers as before.
8. Repeat the previous steps with the next-largest pocket piece. This time draw a line that is 1 1/8’’ above the bottom edges. Pin and stitch across the line. Trim away the two center layers of fabric.
9. Repeat with the last (smallest) pocket piece, using a disappearing fabric marker or hera marker so that the line won’t show. Draw the horizontal line 5/8’’ above the bottom edges. Pin and stitch. Trim away the two center layers.
10. Use the disappearing fabric marker or hera marker to mark a vertical line down the center of the pockets. Stitch along this line to divide the pockets.
In addition, mark and stitch vertical lines 3/8’’ from each side edge. This will help the cards fit securely.
Tip: test the pockets with one of your cards to make sure they fit.
Make the Zippered Coin Pocket:
1. Draw lines on the wrong side of one of the 5’’ x 8’’ pocket pieces to make a 1/2’’ x 6’’ rectangle, as seen above.
2. Place the marked pocket piece right sides together with another pocket piece. Stitch around the long narrow rectangle that you marked.
3. Cut through both layers of fabric inside of the rectangle, cutting along the length of it and then making small clips to the corners. Do not cut the stitching.
4. Turn the piece right side out by passing one layer of fabric through the cut open rectangle. Carefully fold back and press all of the edges.
5. If available, apply Wondertape to the edges of the zipper.
6. Remove the paper from the wonder tape and position the zipper with the teeth centered in the opening, as seen above. Make sure the zipper slider is inside the rectangle. Press down with your fingers to temporarily attach the zipper to the pocket piece.
Or pin the zipper in place if wonder tape is not available.
7. Topstitch around the rectangle, 1/8’’ from the edges.
8. Flip the piece over to the back and trim away the extra zipper tape pieces.
9. Place the two remaining 5’’ x 8’’ pocket pieces wrong sides together and then lay them on top of the zippered piece. Pin and stitch across the top with a 1/4’’ seam allowance.
10. Trim the seam allowance to 1/8’’. Fold back two layers of fabric and press the top edge,
11. Topstitch 1/4’’ from the top edge.
Assemble the Wallet Parts - Finally!
1. Place the quilted wallet piece on your work space with the interior side up.
Lay the zippered coin pocket on top, centered and with the bottom edges aligned. Place 2 or 3 pins in the middle. (see above)
2. Flip the piece over and stitch the layers together from the quilted side so you can sew around the curved corners - sewing 1/8’’ - 1/4’’ from the edges of the quilted side.
3. Trim away the corners of the pocket piece so they are curved to match the exterior.
4. Place the bound vinyl piece against the quilted side of the wallet - at the same end as the zippered pocket. Clip in place so you don’t poke holes in the vinyl.
5. Flip over and this time sew the vinyl pocket in place from the fabric side so (once more) you can sew around the curves on top of the previous stitching.
6. Place the card pockets against the wallet interior with the raw edges aligned on the side opposite the zippered pocket. Place 2 or 3 pins in the center.
7. Flip the piece over and stitch the layers together from the quilted side so you can sew around the curved corners - sewing 1/8’’ - 1/4’’ from the edges of the quilted side.
8. Trim away the corners of the card pocket piece so they are curved to match the exterior.
Bind the Wallet:
1. Fold the 38’’ strip of 2 1/4’’ wide bias binding in half lengthwise (wrong sides together).
Pin or clip the binding around the interior of the wallet, leaving the ends free and an open space about 3-4’’ long on one side.
2. Sew the binding to the wallet interior, stitching 1/4’’ from the edge.
Leave the 3-4’’ opening unsewn.
3. Lay the binding ends against the wallet, folding them back where they meet in the center.
Press the folds and trim away the extra binding 1/4’’ away from the folds.
4. Bring the ends together and stitch with a 1/4’’ seam allowance. Press the seam open.
5. Re-fold the binding wrong sides together. Finish sewing the binding in place so it goes all the way around the wallet.
6. Flip the wallet over.
Push the d-ring tabs through a d-ring and attach the ends to the center of the wallet (just above the vinyl pocket. (see above)
Place the snap tab piece against the vinyl pocket, centered with the raw edges aligned and the snap facing up (see above). Stitch the end of the pocket in place 1/8’’ x 1/4’’ from the edge.
7. Wrap the binding around to the outside of the wallet - over the snap tab and d-ring tabs (if any).
8. Sew the binding down, all the way around, close to the fold.
9. Wrap the snap tab around to help you mark the placement of the other snap piece.
Install the snap according to the manufacturer’s instructions (or like I did here - no extra interfacing is needed).
The back of the snap will be inside the wallet - underneath the card pockets. If it bothers you, cut a circle of fabric or felt and glue it over the parts to cover them up.
Use the snap press to install a plastic snap to keep the vinyl pocket closed. First install one half of the snap on the vinyl binding (centered). Then mark the correct spot and install the other half of the snap.
And it’s done! Make sure you snap a picture and tag me on Instagram @sewcanshe so I can see!
If you love sewing wallets you’ll also love the sweet projects on my Crafty Little Things to Sew page.