Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Leather/Vinyl Leaf Bracelet; Vinyl purse upcycle

As mentioned before in my post on leather bead caps, I have a lot of leather from my DH's stash that I want to do something with. I also recently picked up a cheaply made yellow vinyl purse at the local Goodwill with the intent of up-cycling it. It all sat in a pile on my work table until I came across this bracelet by Roxanne Assoulin on Style Hive.

The post for it is 48 months old so I couldn't find any more information about it other than what StyleHive had listed. While I love the bracelet I hate to copy a look too much, so I'm going to attempt to make my own version of it over the next few days. I will likely add beaded elements and perhaps a few other things to make my own unique spin-off.

To begin, I took apart my vinyl thrift store purse. It was cheaply made and with the help of a seam ripper it came apart within 30 minutes. To give you an idea of just how cheaply made this was; the interfacing inside was not even interfacing! It consisted of thin cardboard!

Then I created simple leaf patterns in Photoshop.

I traced the leaves onto the purse body, and some of my DH's purple and teal suede. The photo below shows the pieces after cutting. I also did some additional floral shapes to experiment with at a later date.

I wanted some beaded elements, so I incorporated little piece of vintage black beaded trim my mother gave me. I've been in love with these for a while -- I made earrings out of it for my Etsy shop, and now I'm using the extra pieces in this bracelet.

The vinyl and leather I'm using is not stiff enough to stand alone, so I have to back each piece with thick black leather to provide support. I also like the black border it provides for each leaf, plus it makes the beaded ovals look a little larger.

Here is the layout I'm going to use.

As you can see I have already begun to add veins to the leaves with waxed cord. I'm using a long embroidery chain stitch for the vein detail.

Next I have to hand sew everything together and make some sort of clasp. I'll post the rest of the process another day.

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