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Tote Bag Upgrade

When I saw this bag, I was immediately drawn to it but I paused at how plain and unadorned it was for an artisan piece. I decided to go ahead and buy it anyway because I knew that I could work my Highly Crafty *magic* on it, and that's exactly what I did!

I hadn't even had a chance to use the bag before it started to fray at the edges of the image, so I had planned to just put some sort of trim around it to hide the fraying. Once I decided to add a trim, it made me realize how fun it would be to use yarn to make the hair 3D...and it just kept going from there!

The original image had a little headband moment, so Wanted to recreate that same style. I used a scrap piece of fabric and tied it in a knot that I could nestle into the yarn hair and glue into place. I bought a skein of black yarn ages ago and I've been using bits of it for projects ever since, like the one time we made vulvas on Highly Crafty and I used it as pubic hair! It sounds like a ridiculous project, but once you know the context, it makes perfect sense. If you haven't seen the episode, you can check it out here:

The gold chain I used was leftover from some mini grinder necklaces that I made for a pop-up. It was easy to sew on with just a few stitches. The pink gems were plucked from a choker that I had back when I was a 20-something working at the Wet Seal. I always loved the shades of pink but the choker was quite literally, a choker. I hated wearing it because it was too tight-which I suppose is how ya wear a choker-but I wasn't a fan. Once I popped the gems out of their prongs, I just used some extra strong glue to adhere them to the bag.

The mini sunglasses were one of those "These are so cute, I'm sure I'll find something to use them for" kind of purchases. If you're a crafter like me, then you probably have A LOT of those purchases in your crafting area! Lucky for me, a use for those tiny sunglasses presented itself soon after I bought them...and by "soon" I mean less than 5 years went by. Even though the ones on the tote bag are slightly larger, you can't really tell as it just blends in with the frames.

I ended up using a black and gold ribbon that I had leftover form another project. I actually had enough to outline the image AND add some to the straps. Normally when people make or decorate tote bags they don't give much thought to the straps, but I think it really completes the transformation.

I try not to buy to many things based on their potential, but overall I'm so glad that I decided to buy this bag and put my own spin on it :)

Happy Crafting!

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