Sunday, March 17, 2013

How to Re-Cover a Ball Clasp Clutch Purse


-         Ball clasp purse (Note: it is much easier not to scratch the metal in Step 7 if the metal clasp section has some sort of decoration- like the purse I use here. It doesn't mean the smooth ones are bad, just that it's harder to do)
-         Pliers
-         Hammer
-         Screwdrivers (straight head, small thickness)
-         Needle & thread
-         Fabric (for cover, lining, & outdoor type fabric for interface)

Time Commitment:

 ~3-4 hours

How to Make it Happen:

Step 1 - Examine patient and assemble operating tools

1) A note of warning – these metal edges are very sharp, so wearing leather gloves is recommended while you remove the metal clasp from the fabric. Getting the clasp removed is labor intensive, so be patient and work slowly or you could damage the clasp.

Step 2 - Clasp surgery

2) Slide the thinnest screwdriver into the slot between the metal clasp and the purse, tapping the end of the screwdriver with a hammer to force the clasp open. This is the longest part of the process, and you can wiggle the screwdriver slightly to bend the clasp open. It doesn’t need to open very far- only enough that you can slide the fabric free. Repeat for the rest of the clasp- the curved sides (where the screwdriver is wedged in this picture) are the hardest to open.

Step 3 - Ready for new fabric

3) The clasp is now free from the fabric –use the old fabric to make a pattern for the replacement fabric.

Step 4 - Using pattern for new pieces

4) Cut out the new fabric (Note- Leave room for seams on the bottom and err on the side of making it slightly too large, since it’s easier to trim than to try to stretch the fabric if it’s cut too small)

Step 5 - Make seam

5) Sew the new fabric section together (the seam will run from hinge to hinge on the clasp). To make sure the seam won’t show in the finished purse, layer the fabric as follows (pile will run from top to bottom according to the picture):
Lining (wrong side up) - Lining (right side up) – Interface (wrong side up) – Cover (wrong side up) – Cover (right side up) – Interface (right side up)

Turn the purse right side out (so that the cover fabrics are visible). The clasp will be attached so that the lining fabric shows on the inside, and the seam will be invisible!

Step 6 - Add edging stitch

6) Run an edging stitch along the outside of the fabric bundle (where the clasp will cover). This helps make reassembly easier, and gives the fabric a bit more thickness for the clasp to hold on to.

Step 7 - Reassembling the purse

7) Reassemble the purse (taping the fabric temporarily in place as you go, which will make positioning it a lot easier) by using pliers to re-close the clasp, holding the fabric in place. To keep the pliers from scratching the clasp, you can cover them in fabric. Work carefully, especially in the corners (which are hard to close again).

Step 8 - Admire your work!

8) Your purse is done!

More admiring!


Note: I used one of my Spoonflower designs as a cover. The fabric can be found here:
Turquoise Honeycomb Fabric 

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