Kanzashi in Leather

As promised, more fun with Kanzashi flowers thanks to Diane Gileland’s book Kanzashi in Bloom!Do you remember I mentioned that you could find great leather crafting pieces from ugly-but-salvageable purses? For my flowers in this post, I used purse leather as well as some faux black leather auto upholstery fabric that is quite thin and super easy to work with, (and looks & feels very real.) I found it @40% off in the decorator fabric section of the fabric store.The purse leather was a bit tricky to work with because it’s naturally thicker, but still manageable. You can’t get too small with leather flowers, my petals started as 3″ squares.
I began my flowers by printing graphics onto an inkjet fabric sheet sized to use on metal button cover hardware. You might recognize two of the designs as modified graphics from The Graphics Fairy, thanks Karen!It’s good to print the images on paper first, cut out and wrap the buttons to make sure the graphics line up to the size button you’re using. Once the size is confirmed, tear off the paper and wrap with the fabric graphics.I wrapped my buttons and snapped on the backs.I coated the fabric buttons with Fabric Mod Podge from my friend Amy. I love the satin sheen it created!For the leather petals, I followed the instructions in Diane’s book for the vinyl Kanzashi flowers. I used plastic clothespins to keep the petals together while the super-glue dried..I made the faux leather brooch by following the basic instructions for fabric and embellished it with my monogram button center.For the brown leather flower, I went digging for a centerpiece and found that a vintage glass knob works great. I threaded the screw through the knob, a round of leather and a hardware backplate.I glued the flowers around the knob with E6000 and onto the leather round, secured with a trusty produce band and set into a little jelly jar to dry.Once dry, I removed the nut, threaded the screw through the front of my old wicker picnic basket and screwed the nut back on. It created the perfect finial.Stepping away from the Kanzashi concept a bit, I cut the red leather into petal shapes and threaded them and gathered them into a rose configuration.I finished it off with another graphic button center to create a brooch for my denim jacket.Next week I will be featuring YOUR Kanzashi assignment projects, so get ’er done and email me the results!

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48 Responses to Kanzashi in Leather

  1. #1 - cindi says:

    I keep seeing these creations on many blogs all made from this one book. I especially like the look of your flowers. The leather is outstanding. I really have got to get this book and try these flowers for myself.

  2. #2 - GeorgiaPeachez says:

    I love the look of the leather flowers. Now I have to go digging for my pleather scraps and get busy. xo, suzy

  3. #3 - Not quite there yet... says:

    Those are adorable!

  4. #4 - supersweetsilver says:

    Beautiful! I had never heard of kanzashi before until I met someone in my metalsmithing class who is very into kanzashi, the hair styles, the dress – she dresses up in the clothes and lectures about the Japanese culture and everything. She makes metal kanzashi pieces in class. Stunning artistry.

  5. #5 - CitricSugar says:

    I love your sense of vision! You are insane in the very best way.

  6. #6 - eva says:

    Thank you for the beautiful flowers. I like leather. Look at my blog.

  7. #7 - SharDon Exclusives says:

    What a great tutorial! Thank you. Have you tried these from ultra suede? I buy leather skirts from a second hand store and they are so cheap and in delicious colors.

  8. #8 - erin says:

    hi! i love your creations! so creative & so darling 🙂
    love your blog too!

  9. #9 - Magpie Magic says:

    Lovely flowers and great ideas. My favourite is the red one, although I love the other ones too. I just like the red… LOL The one on the basket looks fab, very stylish!

  10. #10 - My name is PJ. says:

    These are big time GORGEOUS!!!!! Holy Cow, Cathe! You outdid your own self this time!!!!!!

  11. #11 - Paul Overton says:

    Cathe- So sweet. Love the buttons too.

  12. #12 - Christie Cottage says:

    I love these! My fave is the knob on the basket!

    http://christiecottage.blogspot.com

  13. #13 - Kim says:

    I love these – the glass knob is fantastic! Gotta start looking for purses – great idea!

  14. #14 - Molly says:

    My two all-time favorite craft bloggers: Diane G and you together at last!

    Love what you've been doing with these flowers!

    And I love that you're recycling thrift store handbags. I have a leather coat that I bought to tear apart and it's been a wonderful source of leather for me…

    Molly
    http://mollylee.etsy.com/
    http://mollyleecards.blogspot.com/

  15. #15 - La Table De Nana says:

    I adore your monogram flower! Darling ..Beau..Original!

  16. #16 - SisterDG says:

    HOLY MOLY!!! Where to begin? These are beautiful. Awesome idea, using old purses for the leather. My local thrift shops are brimming with them.

    That logo covered button is insanely cool. And the drawer pull? Perfect.

    …And now I totally have to go lie down. 🙂

  17. #17 - the undomesticated wife says:

    Wow, you've done it again!!

    I have a bunch of leather swatches from my old job. They are tucked away…I need to try this!

  18. #18 - Charmingdesigns says:

    Oh I LOVE the leather ones!!

  19. #19 - Elizabeth says:

    You are amazing and so darn creative!! I love all of those flowers, especially the last one, since I love red.:)

  20. #20 - Myrna says:

    You are a gift that just keeps on giving! Leather flowers outta purses~who would've thunk it but you? They look fabulous, Cathe!!
    By the way, if ya get a chance~pop over to my blog…I'm having a Giveaway!!
    Blessings!
    Myrna

  21. #21 - Bonnie says:

    Wow… amazing! I'll probably never make one but I can definitely admire the talent and beauty in those who do!

  22. #22 - Suzanne says:

    You have the ability to amaze me every time! Beautiful. I just love your creativity.

  23. #23 - paperhill says:

    how cute those are! i love the idea of the graphics on the buttons! and the one on your basket is perfect! i've got to get to the bookstore and have a look at this book. thanks for sharing your beautiful projects!

  24. #24 - The Redhead Riter says:

    I looked at this yesterday and didn't comment and today I came back to look again only to find that they are even better than I first thought…I might make some of these for Christmas presents! I have so many worn out purses that I would feel thrifty using them!

  25. #25 - Mod Podge Amy says:

    Cathe! These are great! Diane, the writer of the book, is such a great person – and her mom Pam is a blog follower of mine! They are a cool mother/daughter combo.

  26. #26 - Mod Podge Amy says:

    Cathe! These are great! Diane, the writer of the book, is such a great person – and her mom Pam is a blog follower of mine! They are a cool mother/daughter combo.

  27. #27 - Mitzi Curi says:

    Cathe, your creativity is unparalleled! Your instructions and lovely photos illustrate your projects so well. I'm inspired to try yet another craft!

  28. #28 - Geralyn Gray says:

    Every time I come your blog you still amaze me! The flowers are great!!!!!

  29. #29 - Fanie says:

    I love your interpretation of Kanzashi flowers with leather! Talk about thinking out of the box! ^-^
    Did Diane saw this project of yours, it's so awesome!

  30. #30 - Utah Grammie says:

    Oh I love these and I bought the book but haven't started yet! bad me – these are beautiful!!

  31. #31 - Stephanie says:

    Wow! Now that's creative! I would have never in a million years come up with that one but I love it! I look forward to reading your blog in the future.
    Take Care,
    Stephanie

  32. #32 - Arlene says:

    I love the look of the leather flowers. I want to learn how to make such beautiful things!

  33. #33 - SkitzoLeezra says:

    Awesome!
    (viewing with a tinge of crafter envy because your monograms are so fab)

  34. #34 - Laura says:

    Wow, I just saw a Kanzashi flower on a card-making blog and with a bit of googling found your blog. LOVE the pretty creations here!

  35. #35 - kella says:

    This is a great posting, tq. I found kanzashi thru' craftypod. Yesterday i bought Diane G book. Can't wait to start 'kanzashi'.

    with love.
    http://kellastudio.blogspot.com

  36. #36 - Robin says:

    Your creativity never ceases to amaze me! Your ideas for projects are so ingenious…thanks for sharing!

  37. #37 - Creative Crafter UK says:

    Love these leather flowers – you are so creative and inspire me to do something different. I especially like the black one – it's so sophisticated with your monogram on too.

    I don't know where you find the time to create so many lovely projects, so frequently and also get them uploaded to your interesting blog. Well done – great daily read!

  38. #38 - Amy @ Living Locurto says:

    These are gorgeous! I really love the simple red leather flower. Those buttons are super cool. Where do you get printable fabric? Just normal craft stores?

  39. #39 - las sandalias de ana says:

    ohhh, so beautiful! 😉

  40. #40 - Jillian Frances says:

    I love these. I have been thinking about buying that book, but now I am convinced!

  41. #41 - lillysmuul says:

    Wow!
    Whata great idea for advertising!

  42. #42 - Gayle says:

    O My Heck! I've been collecting leather & suede skirts from the thrift stores for years – I KNEW I'd find something to do with them someday, and TODAY'S THE DAY! I'm so excited to try this – thank you for sharing!

  43. #43 - Martha says:

    How cool is that? Thanks so much.

  44. #44 - liz says:

    LOVE this! thanks!

  45. #45 - LuckyStarLane says:

    I love the Kanzashi Flowers …see my blog.. I love yor projects as I love graphic design. I just saw a vintage sewing machine today and thought how cool it looked. That is awesome that you made a book with the beautiful design. (really weird that I was just saw it today!)
    http://luckystarlane.blolgspot.com

  46. #46 - Crystal says:

    I just wanted to let you know what
    a great gift you have and you're an amazing artist that thinks out of the box. May I ask where you got rubber coverd clothes pins. Keep up the amazing work.
    Crystal

  47. #47 - Cathe Holden says:

    Hi Crystal, I blogged about those clothes pins here: http://justsomethingimade.blogspot.com/2008/09/simple-finds-clothespin-clamps.html

    But in a word…Target.

  48. #48 - vee says:

    I enjoy your instructions because it gives me some ideas to create and accent my hats and handbags.