I did not want a heavily ‘DIY’ wedding. As much as I enjoy making things, I didn’t want the task of throwing a nice party for family and friends to become a massive deal that was going to take over my life for six months. Well, it turns out that life (and our budget) has other plans for me and my little flat is now overrun with all manner of basic crafts in varying stages of completion.
Today I want to share with you the very first (successful) wedding DIY project that I’ve produced, and as I’m not overly worried about wedding ‘spoilers’ I’m going to write up the ones that go particularly well as they happen – just in case I’m sick of the sight of them after the wedding!
Without further ado, here’s how I made my version of those gorgeous acrylic glitter clutch bags. You know the ones, I’ve seen companies selling them for anything from £100 up to around £2000 (ouch); but this DIY cost me the much more reasonable sum of £15 all in.
Here’s what you’re going to need:
- a box clutch bag
- some paper
- a pencil
- scissors or craft knife
- sticky tape
- tapered or flat edge paint brushes
- metallic acrylic paint in your desired colour
- PVA glue
- glitter in your desired colour
GLITTER CLUTCH BAG DIY
The first thing you’ll need to do is make your stencil. Take some paper, and a pencil, then sketch out the word or name that you want. I cheated *a little* and found a font I love on Canva, blew it up on my laptop screen to the size I wanted, turned my laptop brightness all the way up and then traced it (carefully) with the paper on the screen. I do NOT recommend you do this it could break your screen, tbh.
Next, take your scissors or craft knife and cut out the letters, paying close attention to the letters with holes in – like ‘d’, ‘b’, ‘o’ etc. Then tape the stencil to the bag, being sure to have it lined up exactly how you want it. I wanted mine as central as possible so measured it out with a ruler first.
Now here’s where things start getting (potentially) messy! Take your flat ended brush, or cut straight across a tapered brush to make the end flat, and using the metallic acrylic paint of your choice start to stipple the paint over the stencil. Be careful of the parts of the stencil that are lifted at first, then as you stipple over them the paint will weigh them down.
You have to stipple or the paint will not stick to the bag without tons of prepping and priming the surface first (which I honestly couldn’t be arsed with). Plus I found that the textured paint, once dried, helped with applying the glitter later.
It looks terrible at this point, doesn’t it?! I found that the trickiest part when painting over the stencil is accommodating the letters that have holes in them, I left much way too much blank space, but I figured it’s better to leave too much than not enough… right?
Once the paint has dried, remove the stencil and define the letters. I used this part of the process to clean up any lines and fix up the letters with holes in, using the original document that I traced the font from as a reference. This second layer of paint doesn’t have to be perfect, as long as the outline is good it will serve it’s purpose well. It pretty much acts like a primer for the glitter, also helping disguise any patches where the glitter may thin out or not stick in place very well.
Once the second layer of paint has dried, grab the PVA glue and using a paint brush paint on a good and thick layer of the glue being sure to stay within the lines. When you’re happy with the glue, scatter a decent heap of glitter right over the top and leave the whole thing to dry for AT LEAST 24 hours.
When you dump off the excess glitter the next day, you should have something that looks a little like the above photo. At this point you could call it quits, just use a damp cloth to wipe off the stray glitter and a sharp implement to tidy some of lines out (I used gentle pressure with a pointy metal nail file). However, the glitter is likely to shed a little so I used my trusty glitter sealant trick to make sure that it won’t budge and look extra sparkly too!
HOW TO SEAL GLITTER SO IT WON’T SHED
Take one part water, one part PVA glue, and one part glitter and give them a good mixing together – as a guide I used a teaspoon of each for this small project and it turned out to be way too much. With this sealing mixture, go back over the glitter letters being mindful to stay within the lines.
It looks a lot like puffy paint when you’re done, and also looks really dull and messy, but once it’s dry it forms a rock solid seal preventing glitter from shedding everywhere and enhancing the glitters sparkle. At this stage, leave it alone for another 24 hours to completely dry.
To finish up once it’s all dry, grab your damp cloth and wipe over the whole bag to pick up the last pesky bits of loose glitter. This DIY can be used to apply glitter to pretty much any hard and static surface, for example I’m using it to sparkle up some candle holders for the tables as well. I really hope this post helps you if you’re looking for an easy DIY alternative to those really expensive bags, and if you give it a go then please let me know how it went for you!
P.S., I found photographing glitter to be unreasonably difficult at every stage of this DIY, so I used a silly app to produce the above gif for any glitter fans that might be disappointed with the amount of sparkle in this post!