Nuido’s Birthday Purse

Nuido It Yourself - Japanese Embroidery with Madeline Scharpf

Each year, for Nuido-it-Youself’s birthday, I buy my darling column a present. Last time we popped our punch embroidery cherry with a vintage Tokyo Bunka kit. This year Zakka Workshop’s Clasp Purses caught my eye and I decided it should be a project for Nuido. Zakka Workshop specializes in translating Japanese craft patterns, making them more accessible to English speaking makers. Zakka Workshop might sound familiar because they brought us Yumiko Higuchi’s first English translated embroidery book, ‘Simply Stitched’


Your kit comes with your clap, detailed instructions and scaled patterns
Your kit comes with your clasp, detailed instructions and scaled patterns


I like to trace my patterns, but that isn't necessary
I like to trace my patterns, but that isn’t necessary


These clasp purse kits come with the clasp and detailed instructions as well as scaled patterns. The project requires that you have your own notions and tools. I found that I already had everything I needed to make this purse. The items you’ll have to provide are basic such as craft glue, fabric, batting, interfacing and a pair of pliers to squeeze the frame of the purse. As much as I love a trip to the craft store, it’s also satisfying to stay home and just stitch.


Japanese flower embroidery pattern book
Japanese flower embroidery pattern book


Black linen fabric and Sublime Stitching's white carbon tracing paper
Black linen fabric and Sublime Stitching’s white carbon tracing paper


Ok enough!
Ok enough!


I wanted to embroider something on my purse so I chose a rose design from my flower embroidery book. Even though this book is in Japanese, it has clear diagrams and lots of pictures so anyone can use it, regardless of your language. If you would like this book, you can order if from Pomadour24 on Etsy.




I’ve never made or used piping before and because it was the only thing I didn’t already have, I consulted YouTube Sensei and learned how to do it myself. If you’ve never made piping, I suggest making your own. It’s incredibly easy and you can match the fabric that you choose for your purse. Also, I am not awesome at embroidering something before it’s sewn and actually getting it to center correctly. Not to worry, I may be an amateur but it was easy to customize this pattern the way I envisioned it.


It worked on the first try!
It worked on the first try!


Who doesn't love a pocket?
Who doesn’t love a pocket?


Sewing machine-ing isn’t my strongest creative ability but I am thrilled with how my purse turned out! The embroidery was finished a few days ago and when it came to the purse, I was able to assemble it in an afternoon. I even took an extended break to Facetime with my best girlfriend and her daughter about who our favorite mermaids are. We have our priorities around here.

If I were to add any tips for this project they would be; make sure your seam allowance is trimmed clean, especially in the corners where the fabric can be thickest and, use a zipper foot to sew your seam snugly against the piping. Otherwise, the instructions that come with the clasp are concise and clear.

Zakka Workshop has several purse clasps to choose from as well as quilting and embroidery projects from Japan translated to English. Here, at Nuido-it-Yourself, we have big love the people who help bring Japanese needlework to more stitchers. You can follow Zakka Workshop on Instagram or follow them on Facebook.

お誕生日おめでとう Happy Birthday to Nuido-it Yourself!


Madeline Scharpf

Madeline spends her time somewhere around the Pacific Ocean attached to a needle & thread while practicing Japanese. You can keep up with Madeline’s endless fiber projects at or follow her on Pinterest