sewing & needlework
…rainbow clutch…

…rainbow clutch…

quick and easy weekend clucth DIY

There’s a certain form of conversation that one has with one’s creative enablers, that balances on a knife edge. It could fall either way, but chances are something (or, knowing me, someONE), is likely to get cut…

Now that we are out of the baby & toddler stage, I no longer need to cart a heap of stuff with us every time we leave the house. Often I only need my wallet, keys and phone. I do have a cute tote bag I was gifted by AJ as part of the #SNCASwap last year, but sometimes a bag isn’t quite what I need. The more I fiddle and fuss with bags and backpacks and just juggling wallet and keys in hand, the more I got to thinking, and for a while now, I have been mulling over the idea that a nice, basic clutch, just big enough for the essentials, might be the solution I was looking for.

Last Monday, I was tinkering around in the craft room, trying to decide what my next project would be, and it felt like the perfect chance to get hooked into the clutch idea, so with a hot cup of coffee in hand, I let myself fall down the pinterest rabbit hole, in search of the perfect idea. Of course, what would a project be, without liveblogging the process in the group chat…

Sometimes, I can’t really tell if I’m the enabler or the enablee….

Of course, after said encouragement, I was left to my own devices (honestly, it it rather rude of some people to have an actual life), and accidently kind of fell into my fabric stash, and next minute had a rainbow cut out, along with the denim that would form the majority of the clutch, and some black and white polycotton that I think I received in a swap or as an freebie in an order? I can’t remember how it got there, only that I like the print but haven’t used it as I don’t like the texture of the fabric next to quilting cottons, so it was the perfect choice to balance against the rainbow of the outside of the clutch.

Twisted cool!
inspiration image via pinterest

The concept was reasonably simple, so I quickly sketched out a plan, and got busy with a fabric pull. My stash isn’t overly extensive, but I was able to find a range I was happy with. Purple did look a bit dicey there for a minute, but I managed to find a small scrap of purple left over from some tiny box zippies I made for travel a while back (and, after a lot of searching, apparently never blogged about?), which worked perfectly with my other fabrics. Then last week went bonkers. Tuesday we were out all day with homeschool group. Wednesday was school catch up. Thursday we hung out with my dad and I rearranged the bookshelves into rainbow order (as one does). Friday was all about the cleaning ahead of an open-for-inspection. Then, came Saturday. Fabulous, glorious Saturday. The house was still spotless from said inspection. The husband was at work. The kids were thrilled to be let loose on the iPads for minecraft (judge away but I was doing what I had to do to enjoy that spotlessness for at least half an hour…). Which left me at a loose end. I put on the single load of washing requiring attention. Then, what was a girl to do? Craft room it was…


I got all the twist parts sewn up, and then realised I’d forgotten to allow for two major items. One, was a substrate to attach the twists to, to connect them to each other (kind of a stupid thing to forget, in hindsight), and a minor little detail called “seam allowance”. Yah. What a goose, hey? So with the twists too narrow to easily attach to a substrate, I thought I could rescue it by recutting the coloured parts only, and folding them over the seam allowance. While it gave me the size I was looking for, they didn’t twist nicely, and it ruined the peekaboo effect. So I played around with it a bit, and the newly attached bits actually worked in my favour. When pressed fully with right sides together and the seam forming the edge, the overlapping colour’ed fabric gave me a place to stitch the twist down and neatly finish the gap between twists. A stuff-up, followed by a correction, which turned out to be a stuff up, which turned out to be exactly what I needed…I think that’s what the kids these days call “serendipity”.


I then had to set the project aside, as I had (in yet another stuff up) forgotten to buy a zip before the shops closed, and so aside it went, while I took myself off to the daybed with a homebrew cider, some Spotify, and my cross-stitch. I was absolutely itching to get it finished though, and as soon as we had a school break on Monday, the kids were sent in search of hats and shoes and off we set for a little wander to the fabric shop. Not even a sick husband questioning how a trip to the fabric shop counted as school was going to get in my way and stop me from getting it finished. I went with a trouser zip, as it was going to be visible, and the chunky metal teeth are just a little bit more visually interesting that a bog standard poly zip. Once the rest of school was done, I sent the kids off to play, and got down to business, and by yesterday afternoon, I had one very cute little clutch, that was just the right size when I tested it out for a meeting last night. The originally cut peices of colour for the twits ended up being perfect to create a feature on the wrist strap, and I added a couple of credit card holders on the interior lining, allowing me to use it as a foldover clutch if I wish to, on those occassions I don’t need my entire wallet.


To say I am thrilled with how it turned out would be an understatement. It is cute as heck, and it was my first time using zip tab ends to install a zip, and holy moly do they make life easier! I have been using the clutch all day today, both as an actual clutch, and to toss inside my day pack to keep my valuables together. We had another homeschool meet today, and my bag became a blackhole of craft projects and drink bottles and hats, so it was nice to be able to throw the clutch in on top and know my phone or my keys wouldn’t end up migrating to the bottom of the pack. It has been a bit of sewing overload here lately, hasn’t it? I think it’s the knowledge that it won’t be too long until I have to pack it away and put it in storage, that is making me want to sew All The Things. It’s also a lot easier to pack away and pick up again, a sewing project, compared to say a mixed media piece. I have one more sewing project I am hoping to get done this weekend, and then I think my main to-sew list is done. I do have a hankering today for some art journaling, but I’m trying to be good at not making my room messier than I have to. I have a new book I want to power through, before I have to return it to the library. My cross-stitch is within spitting distance of the last block being done, and my crochet has me on a roll too. Clean houses and long to-do lists demand procrastination and mess-making, I’m sure, and I am not one to shy away from the challenge…

2 thoughts on “…rainbow clutch…

    • Author gravatar

      This is a gorgeous clutch – loving the twist effect and the colours you’ve chosen. I’m still in need of something bigger with a little one pre-potty training but we don’t tend to need a great deal when we pop out so you’ve inspired me to have a think about what I actually need to bring with me and what I could make to support that. I found you via Instagram and I’m now looking forward to reading some more of your blog posts for further inspiration.

      • Author gravatar

        Thank you for your kind words and thoughtful comment! And it has absolutely made my day to hear my project has inspired you to start planning your own – dare I say it – twist ( 😛 ) on it. It would be so easy to convert a clutch to a size that would hold a nappy, a small pack of wipes and the mama essentials. I can’t wait to see what you end up making!

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