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Hello! I received my beautiful handbag as a gift from Yvonne [S.]. What a beautiful gift. Your designs are lovely and I look forward to many years of enjoyment using this gift.

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designing vintage bagsVintage styled handcrafted purses are an amazing way to express your style. One of the biggest global trends right now is to reuse items you already have in order to lessen the impact we have on the environment. This practice has been labeled upcycling, and it has also become one of the major fashion trends of 2012. The do it yourself movement has been gaining momentum for some time now, and for crafty people who have always loved to sew and create new things from the old, upcycling is just an excuse to make new, fun items like handcrafted purses, tote bags and sewing crafts with the fabric they already have sitting around the house.




Going Vintage

One other major fashion trend right now is the use of vintage materials in the creation of both clothing and accessories. Bringing back the retro feel of the early to mid 1900s with a current sophisticated edge is on the top of every fashionista’s to-do list. However, when you are working on a do it yourself project, you might be at a loss as to where to find vintage fabrics in order to give your project that true retro look and feel. Fortunately, there are a number of places at which you can find items made of vintage fabrics that you can reuse to make gorgeous handcrafted purses, tote bags or any other sewing projects you desire.

Clothes Shopping Without The Hassle

A great place to look for vintage fabric is at consignment shops. Generally, in this case, you will be buying an older piece of clothing and disassembling it for its fabric content. The great thing about shopping for vintage clothes to take apart at a consignment shop is that there is no trying on or worrying about whether or not the piece is the right size for you. It may be the easiest clothes shopping trip you ever make. If you want to make sure to stay true to retro standards, check labels inside any garments whose fabrics interest you and research when the company was manufacturing clothes to get an idea of the era that the fabric came from.

Antique Shops

Some excellent places to check out when you are looking for vintage fabric for your handcrafted purses or sewing projects are your local antique shops, especially ones that sell odds and ends. Things like vintage handkerchiefs and stylized napkins can be just the right size for your handcrafted purses if you are looking to create a clutch bag or a small tote bag. These stores may also have fun accessories for your purses, such as vintage buttons or iron on patches that can add a very charming appearance to your project. The best thing about shops like these is that, often, the price for the things you are looking for will be very low because they are not in particularly high demand. For this reason, the price may even be negotiable with the owner of the store, particularly if you are buying a large amount of materials.

Grandma’s Attic

Of course, we must not forget to come back around to the concept of upcycling, which may require a visit to grandma’s attic or asking some older female relatives if they have any vintage fabric they are willing to part with. Many women have tons of clothes and handkerchiefs saved that they have no real plans for and would be delighted to see them turned into handcrafted purses or other sewing projects. If you have an older female relative who was or is a sewer, she may well also have vintage buttons, patterns, accessories or other things which may come in handy in the creation of your bags.

A Learning Process

Hunting down the perfect fabric for your handmade purses can be a great learning experience about the fashion trends of many decades past. Since classic fashion trends tend to repeat themselves, learning these style basics can help you create timeless accessories that you can use again and again, and perhaps even sell with the right amount of effort. Knowing the history of fashion and garments as well as how to stay on trend and find high quality vintage material will assure that your handcrafted purses are always both lovely and interesting conversation pieces.

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