Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Painted Briefcase Tutorial

I have to admit, I first set out to find a vintage suitcase to fill with dress up materials for my niece. But, alas, a cute vintage suitcase was not be found. I knew the hard briefcase I found at Goodwill had some potential though. So after a quick brainstorming with my sister, the arts and craft case was born.

Here are the materials you need for this project:

Hard vinyl briefcase or suitcase
Acrylic craft paint
Pretty scrapbook paper
Decoupage medium
Waterbase Satin Varnish (found near the craft paints)
Paint Brush

1. First, thoroughly clean the outside and inside of the case with some soap and water or cleaning spray. You don't know where it's been!

2. Prime the case for painting. I used two coats on each side. Make sure you cover every inch (the handles, bottom, etc) and allow to dry between coats.

3. Paint the case. I used my tried and true paint: Acrylic craft paint...the kind that's less than a dollar a bottle. I have a large plastic bin filled with these paints in a myriad of colors. Do most crafters have these paints on hand or is it just me? It might be easier to just spray paint the case. Personally I love painting with a brush. If you use spray paint, let me know how well it works out. Make sure you cover every inch of the case, including the handles and the locks. I used two coats of paint. Let dry in between each coat.

4. Now it's time to get creative. Pick out some coordinating paper. Cut strips of paper to size for the trim and for the locks. Use decoupage medium to glue down the paper. Slather the medium onto the bottom of the paper, place it where you want it, then brush more decoupage medium on top of the paper to ensure it's not going anywhere anytime soon (or ever, for that matter. Use this method to decorate the front and back of the case as you wish: the recipient's name, polka dots, flowers, cars, butterflies, the possibilities are endless. Let the decoupage medium dry.

5. Next, apply the satin varnish. This seals the paint and gives it a pretty satin finish. I used two coats of varnish. This also comes in a spray which would probably be easier to apply. Let dry between coats.

6. Fill the case with goodies that the gift recipient will enjoy.

I hope this helps. If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me or leave a comment. Also, if you use this tutorial, please let me know! I can't wait to see what you come up with.


cidell said...

Ahem. I am still waiting to buy a purse from you.

Although, I do think is super cute and hope I have a chance to make one someday.

sillymama said...

Very cute and clever! You MUST enter this into the ReadyMade MacGyver challenge that is going on now!

Check it out here:

lsaspacey said...

Ooooh, love this!

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