A wristlet for my daughter
If you had asked me before yesterday evening what a wristlet was, I would have answered, that it was a corsage one wears on the wrist.
My daughter is briefly home from college, before she goes off to China. Clearly, this short window of time having my daughter home makes me much more willing to make anything she asks me to make for her. Given the fact that my daughter, like her mother is the sort of person that clothing just sticks to. People give her clothing, because she has so much fun with clothes. At the moment she owns a crazy amount of clothes. So my daughter didn't need me to make her another cute skirt or another silly pair of pajama pants.
She mentioned last night, that she wanted a wristlet. A wristlet in current parlance is a small purse worn on the wrist, say during a party small enough to hold ones essentials while in party mode. In my day, young party going women wore disco bags, so a wristlet is the new millennium version of a disco bag.
I asked my daughter to draw a sketch of what she wanted and to show me on a ruler exactly the size she wanted. She wanted a 5 x7 gusseted bag with a zipper. A 5 x7 index card made the perfect pattern.
I had a suede skin , not from http://www.fabricmartfabrics.com/, but from Art from Scrap in Santa Barbara. I marked my pattern on the wrong side of the suede and cut out the pieces. I then cut a lining out of red cotton canvas. Being a city girl, my daughter needed a pocket for her Metro card. I cut the pocket and then stamped it with a block that I had cut from an eraser.
My daughter had a backpack that was given to her many years ago, and was really not her taste. We dissected the unwanted backpack for it's hardware. I attempted to used the terrific zipper and zipper pull in the new wristlet but I won't go into the head aches caused by trying to re-thread the zipper pull onto the zipper coils, suffice it to say, I gave up and attempted a new zipper that promptly broke. AAARRRGGGHH!!!
I cut new front and back panels out of suede ( after sewing and resewing the panels twice with the zippers that didn't work) and attempted zipper insertion #3, which thankfully, worked. I assembled the rest of the bag including the wrist strap and then assembled the lining. I added a lip of moleskin near the zipper edge and hand sewed the lining into place.
The bag at this point looked lovely but a bit like those man-purses of the '70's. since my daughter had requested the bag for party use, I thought a bit of embellishment was in order. I added foil lined blue glass beads and then strung strands of seed beads around the large rectangular blue beads for a bit more--more.
When my daughter first suggested this project I panicked. A pocketbook seemed like something out of my league sewing-wise. I then realized that this wristlet is simply a small zippered tallit bag made out of suede, with a wrist strap. Sometimes you just need to re-frame the problem in order to solve it.