Sunday, November 17, 2013

DIY: It's a Small World Painted Bag

Outfit details: necklace: DIY from last week; sweater: Anthro label, thrifted; dress: vintage, thrifted; belt: dunno; tights: Target; shoes: super duper Anthro sale ($9, people!)
Ya'll, Ima gonna be honest. For once in my life, I'm not in much of a talk-ie mood. So this here might be one of the most short-winded blog posts to date. Think of it as an early Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/Winter Holiday gift from me to you.

You. Are. Welcome.
Anthropologie debuted these lovely painted bags last year. They had the look of being from actual vintage paintings and I really really wanted one...but I also really really couldn't drop that much coinage (I believe they were well over 100 bucks). And, just like all the rest of my Anthro-knock-offs, a DIY was born.
When I first spied these, I thought, well, I'll just start scouring the thrift stores for paintings and use those to create a bag. But that proved to be problematic. Firstly, I couldn't seem to find any decent paintings that weren't on black velvet. Which I actually thought might make an awesome bag and then what tiny amount of tact I have left spoke up and made herself heard with an: Um, NO. Secondly, when I did find a painting, I realized I'd probably bust needles trying to get threw the thickness of the canvas. So I shelved the idea.
Geesh, could I look more excited about this bag? I look like they just called me down to play on The Price is Right. Which I totally wouldn't be happy about because that's gotta be the suckiest game show ever.
When I stumbled upon this nondescript number at my local thrift spot, I scooped it up for a dollar and decided to paint my design onto a bag. P.S. doesn't this kinda look like a face? Tell me I'm not the only one that sees a winking man with a big beard and a wee nose.
After slathering both sides of the bag with a couple coats of gesso, I struggled to come up with a design for the thing. At the same time I was working on this necklace which, with it's colors and patterns, had Mary Blair's illustrations of It's a Small World on my mind. Which, if we're gonna be honest, is always on my mind.
I happened to pick up a batch of postcards of her work on a recent trip to Disneyland. I decided I needed this sketch of Small World by Blair on my bag.
I drew the whole thing out with light lines in pencil and proceeded to fill it in, paint-by-numbers style. I used the exact color palette as my necklace, because as I've stated before, these are The Best Colors in the World.
Painting this took longer than I'd hoped mostly because I had to give some of the painted sections multiple coats. They were cold.
I had several balls to spare, ahem, from my necklace, so I used my very limited knowledge of jewelry making and added them to that little metal piece on the bag. Because it's a boy bag, it needed balls.
And here's what the other side of my bag looks like. I'm not sure which side I like better. This side is definitely more bold. But less ballsy.
Once both sides were complete and my pencil lines were erased, I covered the bag with matte Modge Podge. I might go back and give it another coat just to insure that it doesn't get too stained or dirty. I'm not known for my cleanliness, as you can imagine. I'm a little sad that the bag appears wrinkly which I'm guessing has to do with the inflexibility of the gesso. Do you happen to have any thoughts on that? 

Okay, looking back, I guess I totes lied to you. This post was just as wordy as the others. My bad. Maybe next Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanza you'll do a better job behaving and you'll fair better. Just a thought.

14 comments:

  1. Oh my lord...i love it! It is absolutely perfect. I do see the winking man face, but you made it crazy amazing. Great job.

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    1. I knew I wasn't the only one :) Thank you!

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  2. Beautiful work, I love those colours. The wrinklies may be more distracting in real life but I couldn't tell. Doesn't gesso have water in it? Perhaps that soaks into the fabric a little bit and makes it stretch....next time perhaps use a water repellent layer? But then the gesso might not stick as well. Anyway I really love this.

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    1. Ah, I bet you are right, thank you. It's not TOO wrinkly...but you know how it is when you spend a million years painting something, you want it to look good. Thank you for the suggestion and your kind words!

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  3. I agree with Ladanu. The wrinkles are not very evident in these pics. Do you think sometime you could do a DIY on how you did your hair for these pics? I love it!

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    1. A hair tutorial? Well, that might be fun! The real key is having unwashed hair, a teasing comb, a huge can of hair spray and a bumpit. Oh and one million bobby pins ;)

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  4. I really like your bag better than the Anthropologie ones--it's a much better subject! Very, very inspiring!

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  5. I was a little girl when "It's a Small World" opened at Disneyland…my sister and I went on it over and over. And now that song will be stuck in my head all day. Thank you. :D
    PS. Love the bag!

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  6. Love it! Did you hum the 'it's a small world song' while painting it? I wouls have! The bag is awesome and pre-Cassie-ing it kinds looks like Mitch........just sayin'!! haha!

    Jerra xx

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  7. WHAT THE HECK that bag is amazing! I am not a DIYer at all but to save $200+ off a similar Dooney and Burke bag I might have to give it a try. Well done!

    Also. As a former contestant on the Price is Right, I somewhat resent your statement. It's ok though, because your bag is awesome.

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  8. You’ve got some interesting points in this article. I would have never considered any of these if I didn’t come across this. Thanks!.
    Roof Spraying

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  9. (Aw. I think my original comment disappeared while I was logging in to post it.)
    Oh! My goodness! You are the cutest! I am researching artists for a project (Mary Blair, specifically) and found your blog and love it! I was excited to see that you also live in Nashville because that means we can be FRIENDS! Ha ha! (not to sound creepy) Seriously, I would love to be around your beautiful creative spirit. I look forward to exploring your blog and seeing all of your adorable outfits and ideas! xo--Melinda

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  10. What kind of paint did you use?

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  11. Will you make me one? Can I buy it from you? Etsy store perhaps?

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Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate each and every one :)