How Embellish Your Bag with Beads
Festival season has started, which means it’s time to give your summer wardrobe a big boost! Apart from floral headbands and denim hot pants, one of the trends that returns every year at all the big festivals is wearing beaded jewellery. From long beaded necklaces to friendship bracelets, beads can give your outfit that typical 60s Woodstock vibe and the options you have with them are endless. To add a unique twist to the trend, here are 5 steps to customise your old, worn handbag with beads to turn it into a true festival essential!
- An old bag
- Tailor’s chalk
- Cotton thread
- A beading needle
The steps to take:
1- Consider what type of material your bag is made of. If your handbag is made of cotton or canvas, you can choose to sew on almost any type of bead or button. Glass beads in particular look great on bags that are made of natural materials, such as jute or cotton. Alternatively, if you’re customising a leather or plastic bag, it’s better to use a strong fabric glue to attach the beads. If you regularly wash your bag, make sure you choose a type of bead that can go ona 40C wash.
2- Decide what pattern you wish to create and draw the design on the inside of the bag using chalk. Make sure you lay out your bag on a flat surface so you’re better able to design your pattern.
3- Use a beading needle to sew on your chosen beads. Thread the needle and tie a knot at one end of your string. Use a beading needle instead of a regular needle for easier threading. Beading needles have a smaller, often collapsible eye and allow you to stack beads and thread them in multiples.
4- Sew on the beads by finding your marks on the inside of the bag and push the needle through the fabric. Thread on the bead and push the needle back again alongside the bead. To secure the bead, repeat the process at least 4 times before moving on to the next bead.
5- When you have finished the pattern you wanted to create, tie several knots in the thread on the inside of the bag. To hide the knots and secure the pattern, make several stitches and cut off any excess thread.
There are plenty of easy beaded patterns you could try out to customise your old bag, from beaded flowers to geometric shapes. It’s even possible to sew beads or buttons onto the handle or around the outside. Just be creative and wear your new and improved bag with pride!