How to Make a Simple Foldover Clutch
I love making handbags. Of all of my sewing projects, handbags are my favorite so I thought I would share with you how to make a simple foldover clutch. This clutch can be made for evening or day depending on the fabric you choose. With spring already here and summer just around the corner I decided to make a fun floral daytime clutch that is perfect with jeans or shorts. This clutch is so simple to make that anyone with basic sewing skills can make it.
I chose to use decorator weight and denim fabric for the exterior of this project for a little extra weight and durability. Quilting cotton was used for the lining but you could also use batik or another decorator weight fabric if you choose. I prefer quilting cotton for linings because they are easy to work with and come in a myriad of colors and patterns. In this clutch I used a metal zipper because I really liked the look. The hardest part of this project was shortening the metal zipper. You can’t simply cut through it like a nylon zipper but no worries, I will walk you through the process of shortening the metal zipper. It is not difficult it is just a bit time consuming.
I purchased these fabrics from Joann’s as remnants as usual so just click on the link to Shop at JOANN! but you can also shop at Hobby Lobby or Fabric.com to get exactly what you need for this project. This post contains affiliate links that if you click on them and make a purchase I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.
What you will Need:
- 1/4 yd first exterior fabric (Denim)
- 1/4 yd second exterior fabric
- 1/2 yd lining fabric
- Scrap leather or faux leather
- 12″ Metal zipper
Step 1: Cut your Fabrics
Cut two pieces of the first exterior fabric so that they measure 13″ wide x 7 1/2″” high. From the second exterior fabric cut two pieces that are 13″ wide x 6 1/2″ high. Cut two lining pieces that measure 13″ wide x 14′ high. From the leather or faux leather cut four triangles that measure 4″ x 4″ along the sides. Cut two second exterior pieces 2″ x 3 1/2″ for the zipper tabs.
Step 2: Sew the corners
Take the 4 triangles and place them on the four bottom corners of the first exterior fabrics. Sew across the corner using a leather needle. There is no need to sew the sides. Sew the First and second exterior fabrics together along the 13″ side using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Press. Top stitch along the bottom of the seam for a more professional look.
Step 3: Shorten the zipper
Shorten the zipper to 11 1/2″. If you are using a nylon zipper you can simply cut through the zipper to shorten it. If you are using a metal zipper you might be able to cut it with utility scissors. However, if you can’t then you will need to measure the zipper to 11 1/2″. Using needle nose pliers begin to remove the metal teeth at the 11 1/2″ mark until all that is left is the fabric. Cut through the fabric and the zipper is shortened. Fortunately with the metal zipper that I used I was able to cut through it. If you would like to purchase the metal zipper that I used for this project you can purchase it here.
Step 4: add the zipper tabs
Create two zipper tabs for the ends of the zipper. This keeps the zipper nice and flat. Fold the zipper tabs in half widthwise and press. Fold the raw edges to meet the crease you just created and press. Wrap the zipper tabs around the ends of the zipper so that the crease meets the end of the zipper. Top stitch along the edge taking care with the metal teeth of the zipper. You do not want to break your needle on the teeth. Cut the tabs so they are even with the zipper.
Step 5: insert the zipper
Lay one exterior piece face up on your work surface. Place the zipper face down then lay the lining right sides down onto the zipper and pin. You will have a zipper sandwich. Sew the pieces together using a zipper foot. Turn the fabric right side out and press. Top stitch the fabric along the zipper. Repeat the entire process for the other side of the zipper using the remaining pieces of fabric. You will now have two outer pieces and two lining pieces separated by a zipper.
Step 6: sew the sides and bottom
Place the outer pieces right sides together and the lining pieces right sides together and pin. Open the zipper. Sew around the perimeter of the outer fabric and the lining fabric leaving an opening at the bottom of the lining fabric for turning.
Step 7: Turn the bag
Turn the bag right sides out through the opening in the lining and the opening in the zipper. Stitch the opening closed using ladder stitch. If you are unfamiliar with ladder stitch check out this video.
Step 8: Fold over the clutch
Place your items inside the bag and fold over the clutch. You have now completed your simple foldover clutch.
I hope you enjoyed this project. If you would like more sewing and crafting projects sign up for our newsletter and receive your free eBook of 15 handbag patterns and tutorials.