DIY: Turn Your Old Dusty Designer Handbag Into Something You’re Proud To Carry

Lauren wanted to recycle an old Louis Vuitton bag she had collecting dust in her closet. She had the idea to add a guitar strap, fringe and some fun custom motifs, but admits she is not very artistic. Since I am the crafty artist of the two of us and I have designed in leather before she asked me to “have at it!” and embellish the bag.

DIY: How To Turn Your Old Dusty Designer Handbag Into Something You’re Proud To Carry

Lauren has fantastic taste and ideas and I wanted to add some personal elements to the bag so she would want to carry it. So we brainstormed a bit. Lauren found a fabulous guitar strap in colors she likes and thought she may like her initials. Then I realized her initials “LW” could look like the Louis Vuitton logo and I could paint her initials in the same style. Then I thought why not add another “logo” to add a little humor?



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I asked her if it was OK to add the Gucci stripe on the back and she loved the idea! I wasn’t sure since she in not a huge fan of the color red, but a goof and Gucci mixed with LV cracked us up. We both thought a few appliques would be a great way to add some personal style. I found skulls, animals, smiley faces and all kinds of embroidered iron-on patches at the fabric store. I texted photos of them to Lauren and she liked the florals most in the colors that worked best with the strap and bag. I love how the florals bring a little Gucci to the other side of the bag as well. (I thought if I found a Bambi patch it would channel Lanvin.)


Here are some of the materials you may need to embellish your bag in a similar way.

Vintage Designer Handbag

Guitar Strap

Acrylic Fabric Paint or Fabric Markers

Embroidered Iron-On Appliques

Leather Hole Puncher

Leather Latigo Laces for Fringe

• Paint Brushes

• Painters Tape

• Spray Adhesive

• Straight Edge Ruler

• Measuring Tape

Here is (very) detailed video for our DIY readers to inspire you to recycle your own designer bag.

Now you know how to DIY and turn your old unwanted designer handbag into something you’re proud to carry. If you are not the DIY type, but would like me to “funkify” your bag, please contact me via email for an estimate at carol@fountainof

P.S. Lauren LOVES her bag so much now! It will not be in her closet much any more.






You may like to read more of Carol’s DIY posts like How to Clean White Leather Shoes and Sneakers.

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