Sunday, April 22, 2012

Crafting: Vintage Clutch Paper Patterns

So I gathered up courage to attempt a paper pattern for an envelope clutch just to see how to improve on my own take-a-wild-stab version.


I bought this pattern off Etsy and attempted this simplest version of the 4 designs.

*takes a deep breath*

Here goes nothing:


This is what I did different from my usual non-pattern attempts:

1) I added a dart to the base, which I had a feeling was to give the base a foldline so you can flatten it? Although, I'm not sure if my dart was done right.

2) I topstitched ALL the edges to give clutch a sturdier look and feel!

3) The flap was an external piece of fabric that was sewn to the body of the bag. My previous clutches were made from just one piece of fabric, folded into 3 sections (really easy!)

4) I added side panels to give depth to the clutch



As a result...



A free-standing sturdy looking piece of work!

If I were any awesome-r, I could have made the stripes on the fabric align. But this was a trial run, and I'm so in love with the Thai silk fabric that I'm going to have to keep it for myself!

It took me awhile to understand the instructions in the pattern and to familiarise myself with the symbols on the illustrations, but now I've gained a little more confidence to maybe attempt the other 3 designs and definitely hoard MORE patterns!

Any words of advice from seasoned pattern users?

And don't forget the ElephantisLove giveaway ends tonight 11:59PM EST! I will pick a winner via

Shared on Make Something Mondays Linkup!


  1. It looks FANTASTIC! I would love to eventually use patterns, but as of now, I haven't even opened my sewing machine's box yet.

  2. Well done, the quality of your work is top notch!!! I learned to sew using commercial paper patterns. In the 80s I used alot of Vogue patterns (including my wedding dress) of the commercial sort, I find them the one of the most difficult of the commercial variety to muddle through. There are a few books out there that are meant to assist with sewing with Vogue patterns (here is a link to a blog post about one of them ) I was able to find a copy at the library!

  3. What a great job! I think you are the inspiration!
    You did such an outstanding job and I love that fabric!
    I am wondering what year that pattern came out since the price is $2.00. It has been ages since I paid that for a pattern! My only suggestion for paper patterns is for those that you may want to use several times ... press the pattern pieces onto something like freezer paper and cut them out. They will be a lot more sturdy and last a lot longer! Just be sure to transfer all markings onto the freezer paper pieces!

  4. Wow, the clutch looks amazing! Great job!

  5. A long time ago, I attempted making bags using paper pattern. I fought with the "tissue paper" and in the end, the tissue paper won. The UFO is still in a drawer somewhere.
    I have also made a clutch ePattern in this classic envelope shape. It is for newbies as a first-attempt bag. Based on your images, my construction method is different. I haven't released it yet. It has already been tested. Maybe this week.
    Hey, have you considered sew-on magnetic snaps? They are really fantastic. I use the smallest size - slightly bigger than sew-on snaps size.

    1. yes ma'am! i bought some magnetic snaps to try out!

  6. Oh my gosh it is awesome! You did such a great job. Someday when you become really comfortable, are you going to try making dresses?

  7. YAY! I have developed a new found love for patterns and am not as intimidated by them any more! I cannot wait to see what you sew next!

  8. I found that the more patterns you do, the better you get. I've been working a lot with Colette Patterns lately and I'm finding that the more I use, the easier it gets. Maybe it's because most patternmakers use similar instructions across all their patterns? I think this clutch looks amazing. Keep 'em coming!

  9. I love it! Will you be adding the clutches to your Etsy shop soon???

    1. Yes Jess, I will eventually make some for the shop. Will definitely post about it! Thanks for the vote of confidence!

  10. you did such a great job! my sewing skills are limited to hemming dresses and making things that fit my body from free hand. i'm certainly impressed!

  11. oh wow, great job on the clutch! it looks great! i really like the fabric you chose. i wish i had some advice, but i haven't really used patterns, although i do recommend the 'built by wendy' books ( i have the one for knits and it has reeeeally helpful tips&tricks, along with patterns to use.

    good luck on your future sewing endeavors!


  12. Don't be so hard on yourself! I might even like it better with the non-aligned stipes ^^ its' such a cute piece ^^ I wish I had your sewing skills, haha! x


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