Google+ House Revivals: Jimmy Choo Inspired Up-Cycled Handbag

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Jimmy Choo Inspired Up-Cycled Handbag

It was time for a new "city purse".  I've tried lots of different bags, and have found the handbags that worked in my old suburban life, don't always work well in the city.  For instance, I need a bag with a long strap, that can be worn across my shoulder (and on the rare occasions that I drive somewhere, it's nice to be able to use the long strap to swing the purse out the window to swipe the card reader when leaving the parking garage -- so the people in the cars behind me don't get angry and start honking their horns while I'm frantically digging through my bag, removing the contents, in search of the little magnetic card.  Not that that has ever happened to me...).


The "city purse"  needs to hug close to my body when I'm digging through bins at my favorite GW Outlet, or trying on shoes at the Nordstrom Rack; and it needed to distribute weight evenly when I'm walking downtown.


So, when I found this bag at the local GW, I thought it might work.  It has tons of function, is light weight, and is comfortable to wear.  And navy handbags are definitely making a comeback in the higher end stores.


  • The Problem?  The bag is dated and not very attractive.
  • The Solution?  Draw some inspiration from favorite designers; in this case, Jimmy Choo.


  • The Resources?  These two thrifted leather purses, with broken straps --  99 cents each!

  • The Method?  Cut the extra purses apart using strong scissors (but not your fabric scissors).  Cut away all the piping, zippers, lining, etc., so that you are left with only flat pieces of leather. 
  •  The Flowers?  Cut flower petals from the leather.  I free-handed mine, but you could easily draw up a pattern.  You will want two sizes,  the larger petals will form the larger flower, and the smaller petals will form a smaller flower.  Cut two circular "bases" about two or three inches in diameter, on which to build your flowers. Use Gorilla glue to gather the base of the petals into a shape you like.  Secure with clips until the glue cures.  When all your petals are ready, they can be glued to the round bases you cut earlier, to form a nice flower shape.  You will make two flowers, and glue the smaller one right on top of the larger one.


  • The Leaves?  I cut mine free hand, but you could use a template, if you wanted.


  • The Flower Centers?  Just cut some long narrow strips and braid them, then coil them around and around until you have the desired size.  I secured this with a small amount of Gorilla Glue.


  • How about a tassel?  If you want a tassel, cut a neat rectangle from your flat leather pieces, then cut a fringe into it.  Cut one narrow strip of leather for a loop.  Begin tightly rolling the fringed rectangle, securing the loop in the center of the roll with a small amount of Gorilla Glue.  Secure the end of the roll with glue, and clip until cured.  Work carefully, as the glue dries white, so you don't want any of the glue to be visible.  The tassel can be secured to one of the zippers with a jump ring.

  • Putting it all together.  Decide how you want to arrange your elements.  When you find an arrangement you like, you can secure the whole thing to the purse with Gorilla Glue, or for more flexibility, secure the flower and leaves together onto another scrap of leather and add one or two large pin backs.  Use the pin backs to secure the flower to the bag.

And there you have it!  Three dated leather handbags, up-cycled into a new Jimmy Choo inspired bag.  Total cost for this project was around $5.00!

Tell me what you think.  Would you try this project?

Also, I have a question for those of you who have clicked my Facebook "like" button -- have you been getting House Revivals status updates on your wall?  I think there may be a problem with the widget.

 
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60 comments:

  1. you did a fabulous job - I'm so so so impressed with your creativity and execution of this upcycle. Bravo!!

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  2. I probably wouldn't try it but not because it isn't fabulous! Just because I'm too chicken! :-) You did a fantastic job!! I found you on Remodelaholic and I'm your newest follower! I'd love it if you would follow me back!
    jackie
    www.monkeymommascrafts.blogspot.com

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  3. Love it! Feel free to keep me in mind for the next one! I want a new purse and am to cheap to buy new and too busy to upcycle right now....

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  4. I love it! I wouldn't try it as I am not that crafty but I would definitely buy that if I saw it!

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  5. ooh, I like yours better than the Jimmy Choo one! Your freehanded cutting is excellent!

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  6. Oh I just love it and I think I would try it. Especially if I was lucky enough to find nice and cheap bags like you did. What a great job and very creative.

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  7. It's great!
    I probably wouldn't do it, although I love what you've done. I'm probably just plain lazy!
    I still love my luggage-store small back-pack style bag - it does it all and is so iconic that it's a fashion statement all on its own.

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  8. Amanda, this is amazing! I am new to your blog just saw you on I love naptime. I just bought a pink leather coat in hopes to make a purse or at least a flower, this is such a better idea! Thanks and aren't you creative!!!

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  9. Fabulous interpretation and tutorial. Great thrifty finds, & loving how everything turned out.

    Visiting via Under the Table

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  10. You did a great job, Amanda. I wouldn't try it though, just don't feel like my purse needs a flower at this time ;-) LOVE the bit about flinging the purse at the parking lot card reader.

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  11. Awesome! The colors are wonderful together, and I love the jaggedy leaves. Bravo!

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  12. Amanda you rock!!!! How freaking cool is that!!! LOVE IT!! I can't wait to try it out on something of mine. Problem is all my bags are black!lol!
    I'm a new follower via Just something I whipped up....
    Manni
    www.ibakecakes-manni.blogspot.com

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  13. This is so cool and you made it look so easy... as per usual! I may have to try this though!

    Tania

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  14. This is quality work. I just made some leather flowers myself but they are nothing compared to your masterpiece. Well done.

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  15. FAB. knock off. SO LOVE IT. I am a handbag girl for sure. Great job. Jen

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  16. Beutiful job! What a great idea...Thanks!
    Michelle

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  17. Please tell me that you are walking around your house like a rockstar, because you are one!

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  18. Amanda, yours turned out beautiful. I absolutely love your flower and the center of it. Be sure to stop over to my blog for a giveaway.

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  19. This is really pretty! I love your color combination!

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  20. This is beautiful.. you did a wonderful job.. It looks fantastic.!

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  21. Ooh, la, la! I can't wait to go through my old purses and start cutting them up! I'll let you know how it goes:)

    PS Newest follower! Yay!

    Miranda
    www.justdrinkacoke.blogspot.com

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  22. gorgeous! i like yours even better than the jimmy choo =)

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  23. Love everything you make, this is no exception : ) You give great directions too! I have two thrifted purses staring at me right now...
    Laura

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  24. That is definitely a wow! What a awesome idea. Thanks for joining the party.

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  25. Beautiful!! I'm featuring this next week at KIS!

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  26. It's gorgeous! I'd like to try it out! Have a beautiful day, Kellie xx

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  27. These are absolutely gorgeous! You are so talented. Thank you for stopping by my page and leaving such kind words. :)

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  28. Hop on over to the Party! Would love for you to link-up @

    http://thetreasurista.blogspot.com/p/treasuristas-thursday-treasures-come.html

    The Treasurista
    Finding and Creating FUN things...

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  29. This is just awesome! Thanks for sharing! I've posted a link and yours has made this week's top 10 most popular, and will be featured in this week's newsletter! Great job!

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  30. this is super coo! I have scrap leather and haven't found anything to do with it yet. This might be it!

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  31. Wow! This looks amazing! I would love for you to link up any of your projects to my Ten Buck Tuesday link parties!

    I'm a new follower :)

    www.youngnester.blogspot.com

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  32. This is great! It's my first visit here and I'll be back! Good job on the bag.

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  33. Fabulous post! Have a great weekend and see you again soon,

    XOXO Lola:)

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  34. I'd try it, but mine wouldn't turn out anywhere near as nice as yours!

    I just seem to have been missed by the craft gene...

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  35. What a wonderful idea! My best friend is a purse junkie. I might just try to make her one of these for her birthday!!

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  36. Wow Amanda, this is a great idea, it looks fabulous. Thanks for dropping by beachvintage.com xx

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  37. That looks awesome!! What a great idea.You are so talented and what a great tutorial!

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  38. Superb! That old bag is unrecognisable and so much chic-er than its old state.
    One of the best upcycling ideas I've come across :)

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  39. Good job! Its too cute!

    Emily
    TheToastedCoconut.blogspot.com

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  40. Fabulous job!!! ... i have to start thrifting in the states ... i have yet to find such inexpensive leather goods up here ...

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  41. Great idea. I need to share this one with my daughter. Thank you for helping me see a way to turn something OK into something fantastic.

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  42. Oh yeah...I would try this...I just love this idea and you are brilliant!

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  43. Wow, that looks amazing! Great work and thanks for sharing!

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  44. Darling. I can't believe that cost you a few bucks! I am featuring this at somedaycrafts.blogspot.com. Garb my "featured" button.

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  45. Wow, I am in need of a new bag too and did not like the prices I have seen. Love, love love this! Now I gotta go thrift store shoppin'!

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  46. So beautiful, creative and downright amazing!

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  47. Very cute! Makes me want to go to the thrift store to see what I can find.

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  48. This is a fantastic upcycle! I so want to head to my local GW after work tonight just to see what I can find that may be similar!

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  49. Oh wow! Love, love, love this!

    Gorgeous, gorgeous idea.

    This just made me smile! Love your cleverness.

    I'm going to bookmark this site and try one of these bags! I think my husband would like it a whole lot more than me trying to buy that top bag!

    Thanks for linking.

    I always enjoying seeing what you have come up with.

    A+

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  50. ADORABLE! What a fabulous job!!
    You should come link this up to my weekly Thursday through Sunday Making It With Allie Link Party! I think it would make a Fabulous addition!
    AllieMakes.Blogspot.com

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  51. You have been featured on: http://fabricbowsandmore.blogspot.com

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  52. I don't carry a purse.i would love this bow for my hair or to wear as a pendant or pin.

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  53. LOVE it! I am SO glad you came by to link it up! It is SO inspiring!
    Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie! I can't wait to see what you have for next week!
    AllieMakes.Blogspot.com

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