DIY Suede Fringe Handbag

DIY Upcycled Suede Fringe Handbag Tutorial and Template via

I see so much suede at the thrift store….I have a few jackets, a skirt, a few pairs of pants….it’s all outdated and just waiting to be cut up and made into something amazing. Here’s my first suede remake project……an old pair of suede pants and a thrift store belt into a fringe handbag. It was actually a fairly easy project. The key is to not cut the fringe until the handbag is finished. If you can’t find suede at the store you can also check Etsy and Ebay for remnants. You can also use leather or microfiber. Here are the original pants:

Original Suede Pants via

And here is the finished bag: [Read more…]

Hand Stamped Leather Bracelets (A Tutorial)

Stamped Leather Bracelets - DIY Tutorial via

I made some cute hand stamped leather bracelets today. Boo wanted some friendship bracelets:

Stamped Leather Bracelets - small - DIY Tutorial via
And I thought with Mother’s day coming up…..what about some mix and match leather bangles as a gift for a special loved one? Or these would make great party favors:

Stamped Leather Bracelets - all - DIY Tutorial via

I bought the bracelets and alphabet stamp set from the local craft store. You can find larger cuffs here.

Stamped Leather Bracelets - bands and stamps - DIY Tutorial via


The other supplies I needed were a sponge and a mallet:

Stamped Leather Bracelets - step1 - DIY Tutorial via


The first step is to wipe the leather bracelet with a damp sponge (do not soak it):

Stamped Leather Bracelets - wet leather - DIY Tutorial via

Place the bracelet on a hard surface (I do it on my brick patio) and use the mallet to bit the end of the stamp one or two times with force:

Stamped Leather Bracelets - mallet - DIY Tutorial via

The stamp will leave the letter impression behind:

Stamped Leather Bracelets - H - DIY Tutorial via

Carefully space out all of the letters. Then let the bracelet dry out if it is still damp:

Stamped Leather Bracelets - HOPE - DIY Tutorial via

I use Angelus Leather Paints and Dyes to decorate the bracelets:

Leather Paints - DIY Tutorial via

Just apply a coat of paint with a soft brush:

Painting Hand Stamped Band - DIY Tutorial via

Or apply some dye with a dauber:

Leather Stain - DIY Tutorial via

To get a distressed look you can wipe some paint off using a damp rag:

Leather Stain Distressed - DIY Tutorial via

Once the paint or dye is dry I use some Kiwi shoe polish to seal and shine the bracelets….or you can use beeswax and then buff the leather to a shine:

Leather Stain Distressed Polish - DIY Tutorial via

For Boo’s smaller friendship bracelets I cut off both ends of one of the leather bracelets using a box cutter:

Mini Hand Stamped Leather Bracelets - DIY Tutorial via

I don’t have leather tools so I improvised and drilled holes in either end of the bracelet using a household drill:

Adding Hole to Leather Bracelets - DIY Tutorial via

I bought this colorful sued lace from the craft store for the ties:

Leather Lacing -  DIY Tutorial via

A small piece of lace threaded through both sides of the cuff ties it closed:

Leather Lacing with Leather Bracelet -  DIY Tutorial via

Easy gift ideas for anyone!

Stacked Leather Bracelet -  DIY Tutorial via

So many different messages you could stamp onto these:

Stacked Leather Bracelets with Stamped Words -  DIY Tutorial via

Click here to see more leather accessory tutorials!




Doodle Shoes (A Tutorial)

Paint your shoes with this doodle shoe update tutorial DIY via

I’ve had this pair of bright apple green shoes sitting in my closet for almost 10 years! I’ve probably worn them a total of three times because they just don’t match many items in my closet… I thought I’d add some color!


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

My only supplies needed were Angelus Leather Paint and a very small brush (with half the bristles cut off for a finer point).


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

For my design I was inspired by Doodle Easter eggs made by Alisa Burke. I started with one flower….


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

….and then surrounded it with some doodles:


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

I just kept adding doodles, and more doodles….


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

….until the shoes were covered!


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

A tiny bit of blue design makes these shoes much more wearable!


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

They even look cute with my paint covered studio jeans:


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via

But they look especially cute with Boo in them:


Doodle Shoe Update Tutorial DIY via


Do you have a pair of shoes in your closet that could use a makeover?



Painting a Monogram on Leather (A Tutorial)

No leather is safe in my house now that I have a full set of Angelus leather paints!

I’ve always loved the look of the custom Louis Vuitton monograms…a pricy luxury, right?

(photo source)

I found a $5 leather purse at the thrift store and made Boo her own Louis Vuitton-inspired purse….a “Boo-tton” (thanks for naming it Melissa!). I have a VERY shaky and unsteady hand so if I was able to paint this….anyone can!

Here’s how you can create your own:

Step 1: Make sure the purse is clean and free of oils:

Step 2: Print out a sample monogram using a text or word program. The font shown below is Academy Engraved LET. Draw lines to block off each letter:

Step 3: Using a light colored pencil mark where you want the monogram to be painted:

Measure and mark the other guide lines:

Step 4: Start painting! You will need small tiny detail brushes. For my smallest brush I cut off half of the bristles (see the photo of this brush in my painted headband tutorial).

Step 5: The key to painting very detailed letters is to start very skinny…it’s easier to widen the letters as you go. Add additional guide lines if you think you need them!

Step 6: Use adhesive contact paper or painters tape to block off any stripes or additional blocks you want to paint:

Paint just a very thin layer to use as your guide….paint will seep under the tape just a bit but you will be able to see your lines to work with and touch up the edges as you go. You can keep a clean damp paintbrush nearby to quickly clean up any mistakes.

Step 7: Slowly paint the lines with your smallest brush rotating around to different parts of the purse to allow other areas to dry. You will probably need several thin coats on each area:

It will take several tries and touch ups to get everything just right:

A finished monogram with stripes!

….and it looks detailed and professional!

Boo approved….not that she needs a hand painted purse at this age….but I think it’s something she’ll appreciate when she’s a little older!

It’s going to be in the mid 90’s here today! Boo is testing out our new Lil Blue Boo nautical shorts and a tunic we are offering soon for summer:

Make sure to check out these “painting on leather” tutorials too!

Hand Painted Leather Headband (A Tutorial)

I ordered a bunch of Angelus leather paints from Dharma Trading recently and nothing made of leather in my house is safe now!

I found these little hair clips recently that my mother made for me when I was little…and loved the hand painted details she added.

I was inspired to try and hand paint something of my own for Boo.

Step 1: I took some scrap leather (you can find pieces at fabric stores and craft stores…or you can cut up an old purse/shoes/jacket etc to salvage pieces)……

……and cut the leather into several strips:

I also cut out 2 leather flowers….the largest one is about 1.25″ at its widest point:

Step 2: I took a small paint brush and cut off most of the bristles so it would paint small details easily:

Step 4: I painted some small “swoops” to resemble vines:

Step 5: I added small details like little leaves and little dots for small flowers….

…until I felt it was finished:

Step 6: I allowed the paint to dry thoroughly. To darken and soften the leather I used a technique that I used to break in all my horse bridles and saddles and to keep them clean and supple. I took some olive oil…..

…..and brushed the leather with a light coat.

Step 7: Once the oil had a chance to soak in, I put some Murphy’s Oil Soap onto a wet rag and wiped down the leather to remove any excess oil residue:

Step 8: I let the leather dry completely and then used a tiny hole punch to add holes at the end of the pieces:

Step 9: Using DMC thread, I stitched the pieces together end to end….

….in a simple “X” pattern:

Step 10: I stitched the flowers using the same type of thread:

Step 11: I stitched 1/4″ elastic (I would have used black but all I had was white) to the bottom of each end of the headband. I wrapped thread around the stitches to cover them:

The finished headband!

Now to find something else to paint :)