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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Hidden Treasure: Free Wallet Pattern for Men and Boys!

I have been having way too much fun this week with my boys' fabric package from Fabric Fix! I was able to preview April's set (you still have a few more days to order!), and even after making a full outfit for my kiddo, I still had a bunch of the fabric left over for an extra project.  That works out perfectly for you too, because it inspired me to design today's FREE pattern. I am sooo excited to share this one with you!

Cool, right?!  And you can do it!  This bi-fold wallet has separate pockets for cards and cash, and even has an optional snap closure. It really is as awesome as it looks!  (If I do say so myself...) I made this wallet for my youngest to match his outfit, but now all my older boys are wanting their own too. 

Porter's Button-Up Shirt and Jakob's Cuffed Shorts

If you've never made a wallet before, no problem! I'll give you a clear instructions and step-by-step photos to help out.  You can use any woven fabric for this pattern, and it can be either all one print or you can mix up different prints like I did. 

First, you will cut out the fabric pieces using the following chart. You can use either a rotary cutter and mat, or a ruler and pencil. Your choice!  

When you have those pieces cut out, you should have a pile that looks something like this: 

Time to start sewing! 

Take your two "cash liner" pieces and match them up with right sides together. Sew the bottom and two sides of the rectangles using a 1/2" seam allowance, and leave a 3" opening in the center on the bottom edge. See red in photo above. 

Clip the corners off close to the stitching. Set the cash liner aside for now. 

Take your two "closure tab" pieces and match them with right sides together. Sew along the top, bottom, and one side, using a 1/2" seam allowance, as shown in red above. 

Clip the corners off close to the stitching. Turn the tab pieces right side out and use a creaser tool (or blunt, pointy object) to make the points look nice. Use an iron to make it look nice and crisp, as shown above. Set the closure tab aside for now.

Take the "main outer fabric" and iron one of the interfacing pieces onto the wrong side of it, according to package instructions. Do the same with the "main inner fabric".  Both of your main pieces should now look like the photo above, with interfacing on their wrong sides. 

Take the main outer fabric piece and lay it on a flat surface with its right side up. Beginning on the left side of the piece, use a ruler to measure in 2.5" and mark that center point with a fabric pencil. See photo above.  

On that spot that you marked, apply whatever type of closure you're wanting to use for your tab. I used plastic KAM snaps but you could use any kind of snaps, velcro, magnets, etc, according to package instructions.  Note that you will only apply one side of the closure right now; the other will be attached at the end. 

Lay the main outer fabric out again with its right side up. Take the closure tab you made earlier and pin its raw edge to the center of the right side of the main fabric. See photo above.  Sew the tab in place by stitching 1/4" from the edge, as indicated with a red line. 

Set aside your main outer fabric for now. 

Take one of the pocket pieces and fold it down in half lengthwise, so the fold is at the top and the two raw edges are at the bottom. Use an iron to set the fold. 

Repeat the previous step with the remaining pocket pieces.

You should now have 8 folded pocket pieces. 

Take the "main inner fabric" and lay it on a flat surface. Measure in 4" from the left side and draw a very light vertical line from top to bottom, using a fabric pencil or tailor's chalk.  Then do the same on the other side, measuring in 4" from the right and drawing a line. See light gray lines in the photo above.  Note that there should be a 1" gap between the two lines. 

Take one of the pocket pieces and turn it sideways so its fold is on the left.  Line up that fold so it is directly on top of the light line on the right that you drew previously.  See photo above. 

Sew the pocket in place by sewing the "bottom" raw edges of it in place, 1/4" up from the raw edges. See the red line. This will secure the bottom of the pocket but leave the top fold of the pocket open. You may want to pin the pocket in place before sewing if it helps; just be sure the pocket fold is lined up with the line you drew. 

Now take a second pocket piece.  With its fold again on the left side, lay the second pocket piece on top of the first, with its fold 1/2" to the right of the first. See photo above and make sure yours looks similar. 

Sew the second pocket in place by sewing across the "bottom" of it, 1/4' from the raw edges.

Take the third pocket piece and again place it on top of the others, with its fold 1/2" over from the previous.  Sew in place at the "bottom" raw edges. 

Repeat with the fourth pocket. 

Now take the fifth pocket and do the same thing beginning at the other line you drew, this time pointing the pocket folds in the other direction.  Sew the pocket in place along the raw edges. Continue placing all pockets 1/2" apart.

You should now have all eight pocket pieces sewn in place, as shown in the photo above.  The outermost pockets should line up perfectly with the sides of the main inner fabric.

Stitch around all four sides of the main inner fabric piece using a 1/4' seam allowance, securing all of the pocket edges in place. I recommend that you begin sewing at the "bottom" of each set of pocket and sew "upward" so you are sewing in the direction of the pockets rather than causing them to fold back or pucker.  When you're done with this step, all the pieces should lie nice and flat. 

Take the main outer fabric piece and lay it on the main inner fabric piece with right sides together. The closure tab and the pockets should all be sandwiched between the layers. Sew along the sides and bottom, using a 1/2" seam allowance, as shown in red above. 

Clip the corners close to the stitching. 

Turn the fabric pieces right side out. Use a creaser tool to make the corners nice and crisp. Use an iron if necessary, but do not topstitch yet. 

Take the cash liner piece that you created at the beginning, and with its wrong sides still facing out, take the main wallet portion and slide it down into the liner, as shown in the photo above. 

Slide it all the way down inside until you can match up the raw edges of both sections.  Note that the main fabric section will need to be slightly bunched or rolled at the bottom to fit inside all the way.  Match up the side seams and pin all the top raw edges together, as shown above. (I prefer to use fabric clips for the bulky layers, but pins work too.)

Sew around the top pinned edges using a 1/2" seam allowance. Make sure the fabric lies flat as you go -- they should match perfectly with no puckers. 

Remember the 3" opening you left in the bottom of your cash liner?  Use that hole to pull the layers through until it is all right side out. 

Use a creaser tool to poke the corners until they look crisp like the photo above.  Then sew the 3" opening shut by folding the raw edges in and sewing close to the fold. See red line above.

Push the cash liner down into the main wallet so it looks like the photo above. 

Make the seams nice and flat, using an iron if necessary. 

Then topstitch all around the top opening by sewing 1/8" from the edge, all the way around.  It will be pretty bulky at the seams, so you may need to switch to a stronger needle such as denim for this step and the next. I used regular quilting cottons though, and my machine and universal needle handled all the seams just fine. You may need to help pull it through if it gets stuck. The top stitching steps are very important for getting a sturdy wallet so don't be tempted to skip. 

Now lay the wallet flat, just like it is shown above, with the pockets facing you.  Topstitch around the four edges of the wallet by sewing 1/8" from the four edges, going through all the layers and being sure to keep the fabric neat on both sides. Again, the corners will be bulky but it is important to go through them, even if you need to switch to a stronger needle. 

(I suggest that you don't begin your topstitching on a corner. I began at the top of the snap closure on one side and sewed around from there, so I could continue through each corner. When you get to each corner, put the needle down, lift the pressure foot and rotate the wallet, then put the presser foot down again and continue sewing. It is important to have the needle down when you rotate on a corner so you don't get off the right spot and get your threads tangled.) 

That step wasn't really as hard as it might have sounded, right?   I just don't want anybody to panic when they get to the thick layers. You're really just sewing four straight lines.

Fold your wallet in half. It's looking pretty awesome!  Find the closure on the front. 

Fold your closure flap onto the wallet to it overlaps your existing closure. Use a fabric pencil to mark the center of where the other closure needs to be.

Apply that closer to the underside of the flap, so they will line up perfectly.  Now my snap has a buddy and it will keep my wallet closed! 

Then open it up, and look at all this room you have!

 (I had to show the photo above just because I love the sharks so much.) 

Ta-da!  Go ahead and slide all your cards in; it's a perfect fit! 

(Fun note. A couple hours after I took this photo,  my husband discovered all my credit cards in my sons wallet -- oops! It was fun that our kiddo was so excited to show Daddy his wallet though! The cards have been replaced with some more child-friendly plastic. )

 And look! If all the steps worked out, you should have a neat cash pocket inside for bills. Or pirate maps or whatever else they may want to store there.   I am so in love with this wallet! 

That's all for today's tutorial. I hope you will give it a try. My guess is that after you make one, you will want to make many, many more! 

If you adore the fabrics I used here (I sure do), be sure to grab them up now in April's boy edition of Fabric Fix. You have just a couple days left to order, and they come with these super cute pirate buttons too! 

And if you enjoyed the clear instructions and easy-to-follow photos of this pattern, be sure to join our CKC BOYS group on Facebook!  We focus on trendy styles for boys of all ages. Plus it will help you keep an eye out for our future free projects like this. 

Time to get going on your own wallet now!  

Let's Create! ~ Kristen 


  1. cant wait to try it... but seeing as there are layers of quilting cotton, can u skip the interfacing?

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