Try to design your own wallet
Wallets are deceivingly simple to make as long as you have the right material and basic sewing abilities. You can make a leather wallet as long as you have a heavy-duty needle and are able to hand sew, or you can try an easier cloth wallet if you want to machine sew it together. Here’s how to make both types.
Mark out your dimensions. Use chalk or a pencil to mark the dimensions of your leather before cutting the pieces out. You will need to mark out a large piece of moose skin for the body or base of the wallet and several smaller pieces of embossed cowhide for change pockets and card pockets.
- The moose skin should be be roughly 11 inches (28 cm) long by 7.5 inches (19 cm) wide.
- Each card pocket should measure roughly 4 inches (10 cm) long by 2 inches (5 cm) wide. Make anywhere from one to three card pockets.
- The change pocket should be about 3 inches (7.5 cm) by 3 inches (7.5 cm).
Cut the leather out body out with a sharp knife. Place your leather on the cutting board and use a sharp utility knife to cut out the pieces along the lines your marked. Cut out the body of the wallet and each pocket.
- You also need to create two snap tabs on the leather used for the body of the wallet. The snap tabs should be about 2 inches (5 cm) by 2 inches (5 cm) and both placed on the left side of the leather. Cut away about 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) from the top and bottom of the tabs and cut out about 2.5 inches (6.35 cm) from in between the two tabs.
Temporarily tape or pin the pockets to the body. Lay the card pockets on top of one another so that the top 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) of each patch remains visible. Center this in the upper right quarter of the wallet body. Center the change pocket in the upper left quarter of the wallet body.
Try to design your own wallet
Punch holes into the leather. Use a rotary punch to punch holes in the card pockets, change pocket, and the leather directly beneath both sets of pockets.
- Punch holes into the leather while the pockets are pinned or taped down to the body of the wallet. This ensures that the holes will be correctly aligned.
- Place a piece of thick leather hide below your wallet as you use the rotary punch. Doing so makes it easier to punch holes in the leather.
- Do not punch holes along the top of the pocket.
Sew the pockets to the base. Thread a sewing needle with waxed thread and stitch each pocket to the body of the wallet. Sew the pockets by weaving the thread in and out of the holes created with your rotary punch.
- Start from the inside of the wallet to hide the knot. The inside of the wallet will be the side with the pocket facing up.
- Do not stitch along the top of each pocket.
- Stitch each pocket onto the wallet twice for added strength.
- If desired, use a lighter to carefully and slightly burn the knot, melting the wax together for a more permanent hold.
- Remove the tape or pins when done.
Determine where to place your snaps. Fold and close the wallet. Fold the snap tab over and mark where the snap should go using your Glover’s needle.
- Fold the bottom of the wallet body up to cover the pockets. The two snap tabs should line up.
- Fold the wallet again, bringing the right side over on top of the left side.
- Fold the snap tabs over so that they overlap onto the top of the wallet.
- Pierce through the two snap tabs and top layer of your wallet using your needle.
Attach the snaps. Use your rotary tool to punch a hole for both sides of the snap button by punching a hole through all the places marked with your needle. Attach the snaps onto your wallet using a bout press and mallet.
- Place the male portion of the snap on the inside of the snap tab and the female portion on the body of the wallet.
- Note that both the male portion and female portion of the snap are split into two parts that must be hammered together, sandwiching the leather in between.
- Pinch the two halves of the male side together using the concave side of a bout press. One side should be on the outside of the snap tab and the other should be on the inside.
- Use a mallet or hammer to gently hammer the two pieces together.
- Repeat this procedure with the female side of the snap.
Punch holes along the perimeter of the wallet. Fold the wallet together so that it resembles the finished product. Pin or tape in place, then use your rotary punch to punch holes along the perimeter of the body.
- Do not punch holes along the top of the wallet.
Stitch the wallet together. Stitch along the perimeter of your wallet to finish it.
- Start from the inside of the wallet, with the pockets facing up, to hide the knot.
- Stitch around twice using waxed thread for extra strength. Burn the knot to melt the wax.
- If desired, you could also use sinew to stitch along the outside of your wallet.
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