A few things… first, I’ve been wanting to make this strap for OVER a YEAR now. Yeah. Ugh. I’m a little behind 😉 but I’m so happy with the way it turned out, I just LOVE IT!
Like Dior (who is also having an interchangeable strap moment with the the return of their classic saddle bags), Fendi has made a huge comeback in the last year or so and if I were you, I’d be on the hunt for vintage Fendi baguette’s circa Sex and the City NOW because the prices are still relatively low (though I’ve already been watching them go up) anyway, what’s old is new and it’s about time that little baby bags with short straps make a return because it’s been a minute… or two. Look for logo baguettes and the super special embellished bags as well.
Anyway, the Fendi floral straps (and entire collection) is adorable (but expensive, obviously, starting at $650 and up to $1800 per strap) and really, it’s a pretty simple DIY… Yes, I’m very used to working with leather AND I have made these floral designs in the past – in a past life I made about 35 leather water bottle covers (and custom embellished guitar straps as well) for the Dixie Chicks tour in the late 90s so they could cover their water labels rather than ripping them off and not advertise for any particular water… not sure the reason, but I was paid to make them and they turned out adorable. My thin, colorful leather scraps shown here are all left over from that project years ago) …but still, it’s a fairly simple process and IF you’re not into using leather, you can use another thick fabric or textile and just back it with something heavier or use a sewing machine to make the strap.
NOTE: My flowers are a little more pointed and rugged than Fendi’s and a little less refined, but I still think it came out beautifully.
W A T C H // the Fendi | Spring Summer 2016 Full Fashion Show below for reference…
Here’s What You’ll Need…
* Leather – medium to heavy weight for the base strap
* Fine leather – in various colors or colors of choice for flowers NOTE!!! Amazon has pre-cut leather flowers that are pretty cute… though they have a center, so you’d have to glue them on instead, but it’s an alternate option.
* Hooks – in silver or gold
* Screw on stud spikes – to match your hooks
* Strong needle/thread (leather needle not necessary, a regular/thick sewing needle will work)
* Little beading pliers (to push and pull your needle through the leather)
* Scissors, ruler, blade, screw driver
* Leather hole punch (which is honestly just handy to have around the house for extra belt holes and shoes holes, etc.)
Here’s How I DIY’d It…
STEPS / Make the Leather Strap First…
1. Measure, mark up and cut a piece of leather about 35″ long and at least 1-1/2″ wide. If you want it longer or shorter or wider or more narrow, that’s up to you. I based mine off of the Fendi strap measurements.
NOTE: Cut your strap in a straight line, as if cutting a belt. I only had this scrap of leather left, which was long enough ONLY if I used the curve. So my strap is curved a bit, which is fine, but a straight strap is preferable.
2. Trim the ends down to fit through your hook ends.
3. If the leather is too thick, scrape off the area with a blade on the back side enough to fit and remain strong.
4. Push your leather ends through your hooks, fold them over, and stitch them in place. You’ll need a strong needle and doubled thread and pliers to help push the needle through the leather and pull it out. Make sure to go over the area and knot the ends securely. You may use an alternate means of closure for this step like glue (if it’s VERY strong) or rivets.
5. You may have some rugged leather edges, use sandpaper or a blade to clean up the edges of your strap. You can also use a leather oil or rub if your leather isn’t pre-dyed.
Voila! You have a strap!
Now, obviously, you don’t need to add the flowers, you can leave it simple or add studs or gems or fringe or anything you like. But I love the flowers and here’s how I did it.
STEPS / Make the Leather Flowers & Attach Them…
Determine how large you want your biggest (1st) flower, if you want it even with the strap or to hang over the edge a little. Then…
1. Draw (freehand) or trace (from a flower template) your flower shapes on the BACK side of your leather scraps.
2. Carefully cut them out. Scissors work totally fine for leather this thin but I am using Gingher Shears because they’re heavier duty and more precise for projects like this vs your standard scissors. (fun fact: mine are now over 20 years old! I just realized I bought them when I was 18-19years old taking sewing and draping classes 🙂
3. Grab your leather hole punch… punch a hole in the center of both your flowers… and
4. Decide where you want to place it on your strap, punch a hole there as well.
NOTE: I began my flowers at one end.
5. Grab your screw-on stud spike
6. Pop it up the back and through the hole. Layer on your large flower then your small flower, pop the spike on top, then USING A SCREW DRIVER, twist the back while holding your spike in place until they are tight and secure.
7. Plan out your flower pattern by layering them and lining them up next to your strap so you know exactly how many you need and how to space them apart.
8. I eyeballed it BUT began at BOTH ENDS until I met in the center. I did 2-3 on each end then would flip it and add 2-3 to the opposite end.
NOTE: the purse I used in the photos with the strap is by Sophie Hulme and it came with a long cross body detachable leather buckle strap, which I removed to add this DIY flower strap.
Check out the Fendi bags and straps below which is what inspired this DIY!