Embroidery Library

Chatelaine

 

Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.


Chatelaines have a long history, dating back to the 18th century. A chatelaine is a decorative belt hook or clasp worn at the waist with a series of chains (or cords, in this project) suspended from it. Each cord holds a useful household or sewing item, such as scissors or a thimble. Chatelaines were worn by many housekeepers in the 19th century.

The chatelaine created in this project holds a sewing kit, with four elements: a holder for a tape measure; a scissors pouch; a catch-all pouch for thimbles, thread spools, and other small items; and a pin cushion.

Read on for project instructions to create a beautiful and useful chatelaine!


Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.


Supplies Needed:


**1/4 yard sturdy fabric (for outer shells -- I used upholstery fabric)

**1/4 yard cotton fabric (for inner linings -- I used quilter's cotton)

**Medium weight cutaway stabilizer

**Temporary spray adhesive

**Air-erase pen or dressmaker's pencil

**Small pieces of plastic sheet (for pouch -- I used an old kitchen cutting mat)


Supplies Continued: 

**Snap and snap tool

**2 yards decorative cord

**Polyester fiberfill


**Permanent marker

**Small tassels

**
One large brooch or medallion (mine is 2 1/2" diameter)"

**One large ring (I used a 1 1/2" ring)

**Key ring with chain
 

**Jump rings

**Needle and heavy weight thread (for some hand sewing)

**Masking tape

**Fabric glue

**One oblong bead (for pouch closure)

**Variety of decorative beads, chains, and lockets (optional)

**Decorative chain (optional)
 


Special Project Notes:

In this project, I used the small size of the Nostalgic Treasures Design Pack, and the medium size of the Antique Flowers Border.

The Intricate Ink Butterflies or the Country Hens & Roosters (Redwork) would also look tres chic on the chatelaine.

Finished size (of each piece):

Tape measure holder: 4" wide by 4" high
Scissor holder: 4 1/4" wide by 6" high
Catch-all pouch: 3 1/4" wide by 6" high by 2 1/2" deep
Pin cushion: 2 3/4" wide by 3 3/4" high by 1 3/4" deep
 


Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.


Tape Measure Holder
-- First, I will prepare the fabric for the front/flap of the outer shell of the tape measure holder. Using an air-erase pen or other marking tool, draw a 4 1/2" wide by 6 1/4" high rectangle. Measure and mark 2" down along the right and left sides starting at the upper corners. Draw a line connecting the marks: the area above the line is the flap; the area below the line is the embroidered area.


Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.


Measure and mark the center of each side of the embroidered area by measuring and dividing by two. Draw lines connecting the marks. Where the lines meet is the exact center of the embroidered area. Create a paper template of the design by printing it at full size. Poke a hole in the center of the template and align it with the center point on the fabric.

Make sure the design fits well within the shape; there should be at least 1/2" of space between the outer edges of the design and the side and bottom edges of the embroidered area. The design can go right up to the top line, as this will be folded later on.

Next, spray a piece of medium weight cutaway stabilizer with temporary adhesive and smooth the fabric on top. Hoop the fabric and stabilizer together by aligning the marks on the hoop with the lines on the fabric. Attach the hoop to the machine, load the design, move the needle so that it is directly aligned with the center point on the fabric, and embroider the design.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.

 

When the design has finished, trim away the excess stabilizer on the backside of the embroidery.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Cut out the shape.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

To prepare the fabric for the back of the holder, cut a piece of fabric to 4 1/2" wide by 4 1/4" high. Lay the back piece on top of the embroidered front piece, right sides together, with the bottom edge of the back piece aligned with bottom edge of the front piece. Pin in place and sew a 1/4" seam along the sides and bottom only. Leave the top edge open. Turn the fabric right side out.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

To prepare the inner lining, cut two pieces of fabric (I used quilter's cotton) to the same dimensions as you did for the outer shell. Assemble the inner lining just as you did the outer shell.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Insert the outer shell inside the outer lining, right sides together, and align the raw edges. Pin in place and sew a 1/4" seam along the side edges and across the top edge of the bottom pouch. Leave the top edge of the flap open for turning.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 


Turn the fabric right side out and insert the inner lining inside the outer shell. Turn the fabric of the opening in 1/4" and press with an iron. Sew a 1/8" seam along the top edge of the flap to close the opening.

T
o add the snap closure, measure and mark the center of the top of the flap about 1/4" in from the outer edge. Add the button portion of the snap at this mark. Then, fold the flap down onto the back of the holder and mark the fabric at the center of the button of the snap. Add the bottom portion of the snap at this mark.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Scissor Holder -- Click here to open a PDF of the scissor holder patterns. A total of two pieces will print on two pieces of 8 1/2" by 11" paper.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Cut out the shapes. Next, pin Section 1 to the fabric and trace the shape. Flip the pattern over to the wrong side, align the top edge of the pattern with the top edge of the first shape, pin in place, and trace the shape. The fabric will fold along the straight line later on.


Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Within one of the shapes, measure and mark the center of each side then draw lines connecting the marks. Create a paper template of the design and align the center point with the center point on the fabric. Allow at least 1/2" of space between the outer edges of the design and the edges of the shape. Hoop and embroider the design just as you did for the tape measure holder.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Cut out the shape, fold the fabric together along the straight line with the wrong sides together, press the fold, and then sew a 1/4" seam along the straight edge only.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Next, using the Section 2 pattern piece cut a piece of the sturdy fabric and the cotton fabric.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Lay the cotton piece flat with the right side facing up. Align the embroidered front piece on top with the bottom edges aligned and the right side facing up and pin in place. Sew a 1/8" seam along the side and bottom edges. Leave the top edge open.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Next, align the sturdy fabric piece on top, right sides together, pin in place, and sew a 1/4" seam along the outer edge leaving a 2" space open along one of the straight side edges.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

The fabric right side out, press the seams, and fold the fabric of the opening in 1/4" and press. Top stitch a 1/8" seam along the entire outer edge.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Catch-all Pouch -- Click here to open a PDF of the catch-all pouch pattern. One piece will print on one piece of 8 1/2" by 11" paper. Cut out the shape, pin it on the fabric, and trace the shape.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Then, as you did earlier, measure and mark the center of the shape. Create a paper template and align it with the center point on the shape. There should be at 3/4" space between the outer edges of the design and the edges of the shape.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Hoop and embroider the design as you did earlier. Cut out the shape. Create a total of three pieces. I embroidered two pieces (for the front of the pouch) and left one piece blank (for the back of the pouch).



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Lay one of the front pieces flat and align the back piece on top. Pin in place and sew a 1/2" seam along the right side only starting and stopping 1/2" from each end.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Then, lay the sewn pieces flat and fold the front piece back. Align the remaining front piece on top and align it with the back piece. Pin in place and sew a 1/2" seam along the entire right side. Trim off the seam allowance leaving about 1/8" excess. Turn the fabric right side out.



Free project instructions for a fan-shaped Asian style purse with machine embroidery designs.
 

To prepare the inner lining, cut three pieces of the cotton fabric using the pattern piece. Assemble the inner lining just as you did the outer shell. Trim the seam allowance just as you did earlier.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Measure and mark 1/2" in along the entire outer edge of the pattern piece. Draw lines connecting the marks and cut out the shape.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Using the pattern piece and a permanent marker trace and cut three pieces of the plastic sheet (I used a kitchen cutting mat).



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Lay the three pieces side by side and tape them together at the center.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Fold the pieces together, align the side edges together, and tape in place; leave one edge open.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Next, insert the assembled pieces inside the outer shell. Add a couple of drops of fabric glue at each end, fold the fabric in, and press in place. Add glue along the inner edges of the plastic, fold the fabric over, and press in place.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Insert the inner lining inside, fold the fabric to the wrong side 1/2", align the folded edges inside the opening, and hand sew in place with needle and thread (leave a small opening along the left side for the loop closure).



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

To create the closure, sew an oblong bead in the center of the right side of the opening. Cut a 3" length of cord, form it into a loop, and tape the raw ends together. Insert the raw end of the loop in between the fabric at the center of the left side of the opening and sew in place.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Pin Cushion -- Draw an 8" wide by 4" high rectangle on the fabric. Measure and mark the center and align the center of the template with the center of the fabric. There should be at least one inch of space between the edges of the design and the edges of the fabric. Embroider the design and cut out the shape.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Fold the long edges over 1/2" to the wrong side, press, and sew a 1/4" seam along the long edges only. Fold the fabric together, right sides together, with the short ends aligned. Pin in place and sew a 1/2" seam along the short ends only. Turn the fabric right side out.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 


To prepare the inside of the pin cushion, draw an 8" circle (does not have to be perfectly round) on the cotton fabric and cut out the shape. With the wrong side facing up, place a couple of handfuls of fiberfill in the middle of the fabric.

Bring two sides up to meet in the center and tack in place with a few hand sewn stitches. Then, bring the opposite two sides up to meet in center and tack in place. Stuff the fabric with more fiberfill if needed and repeat the tacking process until you have a fabric ball.

I
nsert the ball inside the embroidered fabric ring with the tacked side facing the seam. Tack the ball in place along each side of the seam of the ring.



Free project instructions for a fan-shaped Asian style purse with machine embroidery designs.
 

To prepare the top of the chatelaine, add the key ring to the medallion. Using a jump ring, attach the large ring to the back of the medallion. I will attach the ends of all the straps to this large ring.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

Next, I added small tassels to the bottoms of the pouch and the pin cushion. Glue them or hand sew them in place.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

I also added chains, lockets, and even a small watch face! Have fun personalizing with your favorite trinkets!



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 


To create the straps for the tape measure holder and the scissor holder, first cut a piece of cord to 9" long. Tie a knot at each end and then sew the ends in place along each top corner of the holders. Then, tie the cord around the top of the first cord and then to the large ring. You decide how long each cord should be.

Tip: attach the key ring to a pant loop, let each holder hang down, and then decide the length of each cord. For the pouch and pin cushion, tie a knot at the end of the cord, sew it in place at the back of each holder at the center top. Decide how long you want the cord to be and then tie it to the large ring.



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

And you are done! The scissor holder is the perfect size for most small embroidery scissors. There is also plenty of room for a pen or two!



Free project instructions for a chatelaine, or sewing kit you can attach to a belt loop.
 

The catch-all pouch is perfect for small sewing items like thimbles and thread! Squeeze the pouch at the top and bottom to open, add your items, and fasten the closure.

All four pouches, plus the embroidery designs and embellishments you add, make up one fabulous looking and functional--as well as historical--project!

Products used in this Project:

Antique Flowers Border $1.99 - $4.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

9.40" x 3.15" | 5.94" x 2.34" | 3.85" x 1.29"