Introduction: Everyday Carry Wallet for the Rest of Us

I love those cool everyday carry wallets. You know- holds a knife or a nice multi tool, flashlight, extra magazines and maybe a grenade. Ok, maybe a little overboard.
All that coolness aside, I’m not the kind of guy who can carry those everyday (or even every other day).
So I decided to pick out the items I needed for my everyday and came up with my go around the world essentials
Passport, really nice pen, extra power charger for my phone and a cigar cutter.

You can choose any of the items you want - this instructable will show you how to make one for my list of everyday carry or yours

Step 1: Materials

Items you want to use for your everyday carry. I chose my passport, pen, powerblock and cigar cutter.
Leather - depends on what you would like to make.
For this Instructable you need:
6-8 oz. leather (2.4mm to 3.2 mm thick) cut to 4-1/2” by 6”
1 piece of soft leather (chrome tanned) like upholstery scrap 1-2 oz. (0.4-0.8mm thick) cut to 5”x6”

For the leather I decided to use that pile of leather I bought early on in working with leather (or your loved one bought for you) that has scrap hide pieces (legs, strips of bellies), pieces of tannery color swatches from garment and shoemakers. You know, stuff you really don’t know how to use and there is never a second piece of the same color.

Step 2: Tools

The usual. I tried not to use too many expensive tools on this one if the beginner wants to try this Instructable.
Cutting mat
Leather cutting knife or snap-off blade knife
Leather dye
Sponge and container for dye
Metal ruler or straight edge
Mable block
Gum tragacanth
Edge slicker
Edge beveler
Pricking irons ( 5 mm spacing on this project)
Small rivet kit (my kit included various small rivet, punch and rivet setting die)
Rubber cement
Binder clips
Bone folder
Thread and needles ( I used red thread on this Instructable to contrast with the leather). Use the same color thread or dark thread if you arean’t too good with your stitching yet and want to minimize the look of mistakes

Step 3: Measure and Plan

I used a pocket on the back of my Everyday Carry Wallet to hold my passport so it dictated the size of the Wallet. Do the same with your planning
3 smaller items fit into pockets on the front so it worked out well. If you you have 4, 5 or more items, just take a bit laying them out and deciding how you want to arrange them and how large your piece will need to be.
As i noted, I used passport which is 4 “ by 6” and that became the size for the main part of the Wallet

Step 4: Stain and Cut

Because I was using the discard pile for my leather, I needed to stain the leather first.
I prefer oil dyes as they are more uniform and can generally stain any kind of leather (like the random parts I’m using).

Stain both sides but don’t worry about the edges. We’ll address those later.

Measure the 2 pieces 4x6” and cut. I cut the outside pocket of the passport side of my wallet on an angle. You can choose to make a straight cut and cut our a semicircle. Whatever you like. Just remember to cut it so that you can actually pull the passport out of the pocket. If your going for a simple straight cut, 5”x6” will work for your second piece

Now cut the soft leather used to stretch over your remaining everyday carry items. 5” wide will generally give enough room for the small items I chose. If you’re not sure, go bigger. You can cut it off later but you can’t add it back on.

I also chose to cut rounded corners on the upper edge of the wallet. I used a quarter but you can buy nice gauges for curved corners or punches.
If you use a coin, make several shallow passes around the coin cutting deeper each time. You’ll get a cleaner, rounded corner that way

Step 5: Adding Your First Pocket

I chose the powerblock for my center item.

Drape the soft leather over you center item and pull the leather down to bottom leather piece. Mark the spot for a rivet 1/8” from the edge.
punch through the upper soft leather and bottom leather and set the rivet.
Now add the center item back and scribe a line down its side.
Using the pricking irons, punch holes for sewing and sew the one side.

Now stretch the leather over your center item ( in this case, the powerblock) and mark for a rivet and scribe the line for the sewing. Punch and then sew.

Step 6: Gluing and Stitching

Now measure you remaining items to make sure you have enough leather to stretch over them. This is the time to trim the sides of the soft leather if you have too much
Sand or scuff the sides where the soft leather will attach to the bottom as well as the lower edge.
Use rubber cement to attach the leather. There will be some bowing/ bucking of the leather to accommodate for the items you want to hold. It’s Ok. Just line up the sides first and work you way along the bottom edge.
flip the pieve over and scuff/ sand for the back pocket (passport pocket).
Apply rubber cement and attach.
Now is the time to add the binder clips and allow to dry.

After drying overnight, remove the clips and score the edge for the priciking irons. I used 1/8’” on the compass to score for my stitching lines.
Stitch the outer edge paying close attention to the bottom edge. You’re going to need to stitch through the layers of soft and hard leather forming the bottom of the pockets.

Step 7: Finishing the Edges

Now you can finish those edges.
Start by beveling the edges of the thick leather. I would not recommend trying to bevel the soft, pliable leather. You will only have difficulty trying to get an even bevel and it isn’t necessary.

Dye the exposed edges.

After the dye has dried, add gum tragacanth and use your edge slicker to smooth the edges.

I finished the piece with a bit of neutral polish.

Enjoy your Everday Carry Wallet for the rest of us!

Leather Challenge

Participated in the
Leather Challenge