The accessory that's actually at the top of my wish list is a pair of leopard flats, but since I still haven't found the right pair, I thought I'd DIY a clutch. I've come to realise that a leopard clutch is quite a classic accessory itself, great for dressing up a plain outfit.
Leopard print fabric
Lining fabric (preferably double-sided to prevent any confusion later on)
Heavyweight interfacing (optional)
What to do
1. Cut 2 pieces of leopard print fabric and 2 pieces of lining fabric, each measuring 12" by 14". If using interfacing, cut 2 pieces with the same dimensions and fuse to wrong side of the leopard print fabric.
2. Place one piece of leopard print fabric right side up. Then, place the zipper right side down (i.e. zipper pull touching the leopard print fabric) with the pull on the left, aligning it with the top of the leopard print fabric. Sew the two layers together.
3. Place one piece of lining fabric on top of the layers on you have just sewn and pin in place.
4. Flip the layers over such that the wrong side of the leopard print fabric is now facing you. Sew all layers together, using the stitches you created in Step 2 to guide you.
5. Flip the fabrics right side out and iron.
6. Place the other piece of leopard print fabric right side up. Then, place the zipper (which is now attached to some fabric) right side down with the pull on the right, aligning it with the top of the leopard print fabric.
7. The two leopard print fabrics should be facing right side together. Sew the two layers together.
8. Place the other piece of lining fabric on top of the layers you have just sewn and pin in place.
9. Flip the layers over such that the wrong side of the leopard print fabric is now facing you. Sew all layers together, using the stitches you created in Step 7 to guide you.
10. Flip the fabrics right side out and iron.
11. Pull the zipper halfway.
12. Flip the fabrics such that the leopard print fabrics are right side together, and the lining fabrics are also facing each other.
13. Sew all around the sides, leaving an opening in the lining. When sewing over the zip, sew as close to the zipper stops / ends as possible. Clip corners to prevent bulky edges afterwards.
14. Turn the pouch right side out using the opening. Use something long like a chopstick or pen to push out the corners.
15. Fold the fabric from the opening in and iron it down. Topstitch to sew the opening shut.
16. Push all of the lining into the pouch, such that the leopard fabrics enclose all of the lining. Fold over and enjoy.
(Yields a clutch that measures approximately 10" by 12.5" flat, or 10" by 7" folded.)
This is really a zipper pouch tutorial which can be adapted for all sorts of storage just by adjusting the dimensions. Make one to fit your laptop or phone or sunglasses, anything!
I must say I'm quite pleased with the outcome. I'm going to see how often I carry it around, and if it does get a lot of use, I might invest in a store-bought clutch or maybe DIY another with hair on hide. We'll see!