Amanda Dorough | She's Paying It Off

DIY Leather Feather Earrings


I currently have more than 700 pins on my Pinterest DIY board.  So many project to do and not enough time!  Instead of being that person that likes great ideas but never actually tries any I made it a priority to tackle my favorite projects one my one as materials become available.

The other day I came across this, well, ugly leather purse at the Goodwill Outlet, and immediatly knew that I could use it for parts, specifically to harvest leather to make my own version of these awesome earrings from Etsy.

You can find them here.

Aren’t the earrings amazing?  I love, love, love the colors, and since it’s not in my budget to buy these gorgeous faux leather plumes I decided to try my hand at designing some for myself.

Here’s a step by step of how I did it.

First of all, here are the materials that I used

Before I tore this purse apart I felt a slight  apprehension that I would find it’s really cheap vinyl instead of leather, but my fears were dissolved when I cute into it and found that it was indeed leather, yay!

Step 1

Remove a pannel of leather from the purse.  I didn’t need much for the earrings, so I decided to only use the panel that covered the flap.

Step 2

Draw out the design for the feather.  In hindsight I would have probably done this on the smooth side since I ended up painting the leather anyway.  It was just a little hard to get the lines on the rough side.

I decided to draw the feather details but only cute out the solid side lines using my scissors so that I could then trace that same shape for the second earring.

Step 3

I used an exact knife to cut the feather details into both earrings and then I used a leather punch to punch the hole at the top (for those that don’t have a leather punch, like most of the population, a small hole punch works just fine.

Step 4

Brown wasn’t really what I was going for so I decided to cover the earrings in gold paint.  In the end I used two layers, although I probably could have gotten away with just one.  I also decided to paint both sides so that if the earring got turned around it wouldn’t look strange.

Step 5

Finally it was time to add the color details.  I didn’t want to copy the Etsy earrings exactly (because I feel like that would be akin to stealing), so I made a variation of the design for myself.  The pink paint wasn’t very good so it took me about 3 coats to get it took look right, but in the end it turned out ok!

Step 6

The final step was to add the wire and earring hooks.  It was a little more complicated than it should of been, but I’m sure there is an easier way to do it.

And Viola!  What do you think?