Common in rough grassland, waste ground, roadside verges and woodland rides throughout much of England and Wales, rare elsewhere. In Hampshire common in the south-east, but otherwise only sparsely recorded and apparently absent from the New Forest; on the Isle of Wight, generally uncommon. Wingspan 12.5-15 mm. Very similar to C. therinella
, from which only separated in 1942. Like many of the Coleophora
, imagines are virtually impossible to identify without recourse to dissection, and the larvae, which live in cases of characteristic form and which can sometimes be found on the foodplant, may be easier to identify by comparison against a reference collection. Larva mines leaves of Carduus
, living within a movable case.