Especially for purses and bags, it's become normal for makers to apply leather or even metal tags to their finished items. It's a way to add an authentic designer look. Most tags feature just the generic "handmade" label, but for those willing to lay out the cash and buy a minimum quantity, it's possible to imprint your own brand on a metal tag.
I'm not one of those. The mocked up tags that you see above are likely as close as I'm ever going to get to having my own brand immortalized on anything other than fabric. (And honestly, I'm not even good at remembering to put my fabric labels on things that I make.)
That said, what if you want your finished item to say more than just "handmade by me"? When I finished my FrankenPurse, I was so happy with the result that I wanted to elevate it beyond handmade... and give it a designer vibe. So I challenged myself over the past month to come up with some innovative — and inexpensive — ways to add some glam to the bag.
I'm here to share three of them today. Let me know if they're designer worthy!
Hang a Custom Tag
Do the logo tags that hang from designer purses appeal to you? Well, you can make your own version and be totally unique about it.
Always one to think about utility as well as fashion, I took my scraps of Tim Holtz timepieces fabric and came up with this.
|DIY "designer" bag tag!|
It's for carrying around a loonie (our quintessentially Canadian one dollar coin) to "rent" a shopping cart. Here it is attached to my Frankenpurse as a zipper pull.
|Bag tag zipper pull...|
I actually have a keychain with a loonie sized token that I use for shopping carts, so when I found this broken flower clip sitting in a drawer just waiting to be repurposed, I tucked it inside the tag to change it up. Other things that would work? Medallions, buttons, photos...
|Changing up the look...|
Versatile, useful and decorative. What more can one ask for? And you can make a matching one for any purse with your leftover scraps.
How? I'll follow up soon with a tutorial. (I had another variation on the idea come to me after I made this one, so I'm waiting for everything to "gel".)
Trim with Chains
Do biker guys still carry their wallets on chains? I know nothing about the history of who first put a wallet on a chain, but you can borrow the idea and put a chain on a purse.
Actually, bags trimmed with chains are quite common. (Go ahead, google it.)
|A little bit of chain adds a little bit of bling...|
This is a remnant piece from a repurposed chain belt. I put a lobster clasp at one end to clip onto my strap ring. And at the other end?
|Remote starter on a chain...|
My car has a remote starter. However, since the vehicle otherwise starts/stops/opens via a proximity fob, I'm not used to handling physical keys or fobs. To use this remote, however, I need to press it and to press it, I need to find it. Therefore, this bit of bling was another addition for the sake of utility. (I know, I know... first world problems.)
For those who don't need to attach anything specific to a chain, connecting the other end to a zipper pull is an easy way to add this look. You could also, of course, sew a chain directly onto your bag at strategic locations.
Add Faux Rivets & Jewels
Remember the BeDazzler? Well, this is so much better because it's super easy, super cheap and I'm not encouraging you to overdo it.
Take a look at what I picked up at a dollar store:
|See? It's even called bling!|
Notice anything else? They look exactly like rivets. Hot glue them onto a bag strap or strap anchor and you can instantly have the look without the hardware.
I originally picked them up to finish off my miniature purse, being carried here by my Purl Bee Penguin.
But don't they look like the genuine article here on my bag strap?
|Come on, you can't tell that's not a rivet!|
Instant upgrade in style, don't you think?
And here's what you can do with the other little gems. (Apart from putting them on miniature bags.)
|Adding bling to a zipper pull...|
I stuck two of the small round ones onto my heart shaped zipper pulls. A third square one was applied to my purse hook/hanger.
Guess you can call them bling for my bling.
Anyway, I hope I've inspired you to glam up your next handmade bag! (If you missed it, you might also want to check out my recent post on handy hacks for handmade bags.)