Saturday, November 14, 2009

Leather Purse


This past summer I got it in my head (as I tend to do) to try to make a purse out of a thrifted leather jacket. I didn't ever do anything about it (find a thrifted jacket for starters...) but the idea kept popping into my head. A few weeks ago I stumbled across Philigry's tutorial and I knew what I would be doing that weekend.

Value Village had a lot of leather jackets and coats but the prices were really high for a lot of them ($50 for a jacket at Value Village?). I was looking for a great battered brown jacket but couldn't find what I wanted for under $40. I ended up getting a beautifully soft black leather jacket with no shaping which would provide me with a lot of leather for $15.


Using Philigry's tutorial as my guide I cut my jacket (cut the lining out) and used the front pockets as exterior pockets for my bag. I made a very basic tote style bag. I cut handles and sewed them with raw edges exposed and attached them with rectangular metal rings. I lined the bag with some cotton from stash and included basic patch pockets in the inside.

Recycled leather bag inside

In this picture you can see the rivets I tried to use for the straps. I could not get them to work properly. Well, they work in that they hold and I can't get them off but they wouldn't go on straight and really don't look very good. (in the pictures they look okay but up close they're really bashed in) I'm calling this an experiment (if anyone were to ask).

I used a leather needle that I bought at Fabricland and had no problems with sewing the bag on my mom's machine. The only issues I had were with the leather sticking to my sewing machine a bit. I have an idea for a cheap/easy fix for that which I'll try out with some of the leftover scraps.

Next up: a wallet with some of the scraps. And then the search for a brown leather jacket... :)


  1. "The only issues I had were with the leather sticking to my sewing machine a bit."

    Tissue paper between the feed dogs and the leather. Also works for vinyl.

    Nice work!

  2. oh, i love your bag! so glad it came out all right and there were not a lot of problems. it looks great!
    lovely blog by the way!

  3. Very very cool idea! I LOVE re-crafted projects. There was a thrift store in the boonies in Kansas somewhere that used to sell every piece of clothing for $1 each, and we got several leather jackets that way (though I never thought to turn them into purses... we used them for Boy Scout crafts). Gotta love a good deal! By the way... feel free to use the word "yorn". I made it up last night while writing that post and I think it should really be in every knitter's vocabulary.

  4. Wow, I'm impressed!


Hi! I'm so glad you stopped by. I'd love to hear from you.