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April Sew Along: The Gemella Wallet (Week 1)

Sometimes the hardest part of a project is just getting started. This week, we’ll conquer that challenge together by tackling the first steps in the Gemella Wallet pattern.

If you missed last week’s announcement about the April Sew Along, make sure to read this blog post first. You will learn more about the Sew Along, the Gemella Wallet, and the materials you will need. If you’re just joining us, don’t worry — it’s not too late to get started! One of the best parts of a Sew Along is that you can work at your own pace while getting support and inspiration from other participants in our Facebook Group.

Remember, the Sew Along is free to join, but you will need the Gemella Wallet pattern to follow along. The pattern is available in PDF format for $14.95.

Now, let’s get to the fun part!

Sew Along Week 1: Fabric Cutting and Fusing

This week, we’ll be focusing on cutting out the materials and fusing the stabilizer. Not all of the stabilizer pieces get fused immediately, so be sure to read over the pattern before getting iron happy!

I designed the Gemella Wallet to work with a variety of materials, from leather to faux leather to cork. For the Sew Along, I’ll be demonstrating the Gemella in two different materials. In the video clips, I’m using our faux snakeskin in Pink/Black. This textured, geometric print material is 0.9mm thick and easy to work with. In some photos, you’ll see me using our dark purple faux ostrich. I love the elegant amethyst color and the fabulous texture. Keep in mind that it is a little bit thicker, so it’s best suited for those with a semi-industrial or industrial sewing machine.

When you have your materials ready, it’s time to get started. Begin by taping the pattern pieces together at the indicated points, then cut out your materials. In the video tutorial below, we review the pattern pieces and I show you some tips on how to cut out the credit card slots. From there, the pattern will walk you through every step of the cutting and fusing process. You can also follow the video to see the process and get tips for customizing the pattern to your liking.

Tips for Cutting and Fusing

Selecting Your Lining: Adhesive vs. Regular

Gemella wallet in progress with black adhesive lining

You can use your favorite cotton, linen, or other lining material in your Gemella Wallet, or you can save a step with adhesive lining. This 0.1mm thin nylon fabric has an adhesive backing, so you won’t need to cut interfacing for your credit card lining pieces. I talk more about this in the video, from the 04:33 mark to 05:28.

Another good option is landscape fabric, the kind used for weed control. It is thin, cheap, and easily found at local hardware stores or on Amazon. If you choose to use anything besides the adhesive lining, I suggest using a little extra double-sided tape to help hold everything in place.

Cutting the Credit Card Slots

Gemella wallet credit card slots

Did you know you can use a leather hole punch to improve your credit card slots? All you need is a hole punch, a pencil, and a craft knife (I use the Zoid Gripped Art Knife). Watch the video starting at 10:10 to see how it’s done. This technique is surprisingly simple, looks lovely, and allows your cards to slide in and out of the wallet more easily.

Once all of the pieces are cut out and the stabilizer is fused, go have a night out with your children, grandkids, or that special someone (maybe even Fido). We will regroup next week and move onto constructing the flap and snap pieces and the construction of the credit card slots and ID window. 

Share Your Photos for a Chance to Win

I’m excited to see what you create! Take a moment to show off your hard work, and you’ll have a chance to get an exclusive 25% discount at the Simply Classic online store! There are two ways to enter:

Option 1: Post in the Simply Classic Inspiration Group on Facebook.

Join the Simply Classic Inspiration Group and create a new post to show us your Gemella Wallet in progress.

Option 2: Leave a comment on this blog post.

Leave a comment on this post that includes a photo of your progress.

It’s as easy as that! You can enter once per week until the end of the Sew Along. Then, we will randomly select one entrant to win a 25% coupon to Simply Classic. That’s 25% off patterns, leather, fabrics, hardware, tools and notions — everything you need for your next project. (For the official rules and legal mumbo-jumbo, click here.)

Happy sewing!

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