Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Bottega Veneta

Inspired by the masters, here's the making of my Bottega Veneta influenced piece:
I chose a gray sheepskin from Leather Impact for my Bottega Veneta inspired coin purse. I wanted something fairly thin and soft to the touch, like a real Bottega handbag.
I wanted to start small and not waste any material (in case this didn't go as planned), so I decided to make a purse measuring 4" x 5.5". I first cut a bunch of 1/4" strips of leather lengthwise with a rotary cutter and quilting ruler. I figured if some strips were too long I could always weave them though as-is and snip off the remaining ends to use on the shorter weave sections.
I created a 8.5" x 6" template of slit marks that I taped to the leather hide and cut though with a craft knife very carefully (template below).
With an embroidery needle, I hand wove each strip of leather though the slits following the diagonal pattern of the weave. The strips stretch as they are pulled through the slits so I would go back and loosen each weave. When I finished, the once flat and smooth skin was now completely transformed into a basket woven textured fabric—Bottega's signature brilliance!
When the weave was complete, I trimmed the hide down to the edges of the weave, folded it inside out and changed the needle of the sewing machine to a denim needle. I stitched up each side with a seam allowance of 1/4". I did this twice for stability. When flipped right side out, the top edge had the raw woven ends, so I folded them in 1/4" and tacked them down with Fabri-tac.
After watching countless videos on how to install a zipper, I moseyed back over to the sewing machine and attempted to make a silk pouch with a zipper to use as the purse liner. I am not going to undertake trying to explain how I did this because there are much better instructions out theremy way I'm sure isn't the way—so let's just say I made a silk pouch slightly smaller than 4" x 5.5" with a zipper. I like zippers (not installing them) so I didn't want to hide the teeth, hence the exposed zipper.
Attaching the liner to the woven outside was another endeavor. With the two parts I ended up with, the best way to finish it was to glue it. I used the good old stinky Barge, two part cement. To keep the zipper teeth clean I covered them with tape and brushed the glue on the fabric part of each side of them. I also taped off the top of the folded the edge of the leather pouch as well and brushed about a 1/4" line of the glue below the tape. When both glue parts were dry, I carefully inserted the silk liner into my woven leather pouch, removed the tape and adhered them together. I fussed a bit with the bulky corners of the leather piece, pushing them further down into the pouch, adding a bit more glue and covering them with the zipper ends.

There are many changes I would consider if I were to make another, but o
verall I am pretty impressed with myself. It's by no means a Bottega Veneta, but considering all the obstacles, for my first try, I am quite satisfied with the results. Thanks Martha for the inside look at this luxury brand!


  1. Great looking, I bet you could also do that with fabric say felt.

  2. I remember watching that segment on the show. I loved the attention to detail. You did an amazing job creating your own version!

  3. good job Krissy! Looks great! I want to make one with you asap:) xx


  4. Now a days bottega handbag is widely known. This high end designer bag is one that will hold its own in classic style. Thanks a lot....

  5. このピンクのbottega veneta が女の子が非常に喜ぶことができると考えています!bottega veneta 財布!最新デザインのGucci バッグ!ボッテガ バッグボッテガ トーチは現在国際上一流なブランドが包むことです、女の子が不可欠さのものですよ!