Can you hear Yoda now?
I hear him saying "Upcycle you will. The planet you will save."
One of the things I do for fun is to go to flea markets. I purchased a $5 (labeled) Fossil purse (green leather) with the intent of drawing Yoda on it. As I continued to walk around the flea market, I was amazed to find a second green purse, made out of what I call "pleather" or plastic-leather. It's much easier to take care of, can be cleaned easier, and still looks nice without the cost of real leather. That purse cost me $2.
So now I had two green purses with the intent of drawing Yoda on them.
Where do I start? Instructables, of course.
Inspired by her Star Wars shoes, and using advice from her Instructable, How to Paint leather shoes by PenfoldPlant, and Upcycled Piano Virtuoso Clutch by Shrimp Salad Circus, I created these Upcycled Yoda Purses.
I put the "I made it" photo under the Upcycled Piano Clutch, because that was the closest thing to this particular Instructable and was great inspiration to try to use permanent marker on a purse.
The Step by Step instructions show the making of the pleather purse. I kept the leather Fossil purse for my own use and the instructions are virtually the same for that one as the pleather one with a few exceptions. Those instructions are in Step 9.
The second purse I gave to my good friend who is also a Star Wars fanatic and was absolutely thrilled to get it. Feel free to check out the photobomb by my own husband from her Facebook post about receiving the purse.
Made a choice I did. Stick with it, I must.
Oh and feel free to leave comments in Yoda-eese, because you know, it's just awesome to talk like that sometimes.
Step 1: Materials Used
If you didn't catch the hint in the Intro, this instructable shows how I drew a Yoda character onto a green purse.
I bought two different types of purses, one is leather and the details on how I drew Yoda on that purse are in Step 9.
The second purse, shown throughout this instructable, is not leather and it is also green.
The whole purpose for choosing a green purse was so that I could sketch the Yoda and have the majority of his skin color be the original purse color.
I had Gold and Silver Metallic Permanent Markers that I used to color the eyes.
Specifically for the pleather purse, I also used Clear Acrylic Coating Aerosol Spray.
I searched the net high and low for a Yoda cartoon that I could hand-draw onto the purse by looking at it. I have a Pinterest board that I pinned options to and finally found something I thought I could copy by hand. I used regular Word doc to copy the photo into and enlarge it to a landscape size that would print well and I could see the details I needed. My printer was running out of ink hence the changes in color you may see in the photo, but I needed the lines to look at.
In Step 2 of the Instructable titled Star Wars Glowing Headboard with Stars, the author kynac suggests to use a cartoon or coloring book image to copy. That is fantastic advice if you are looking to use this instructable as inspiration to make another character on a purse.
Step 2: Clean the Purse
I used Clorox bleach wipes to wipe up the pleather purse.
The bleach wipes removed the red stain that was inside the lining of the purse as well. It took some scrubbing, but I was able to remove the stain on the inside lining of the purse.
I didn't scrub the purse with anything with bristles on it, as I wanted the original finish of the purse to come through as the color of Yoda's skin.
*I did not clean the leather purse with anything wet. See Step 9.*
Step 3: Sketch Your Drawing
With a No. 2 pencil I began the process of recreating the Yoda face on the purse by sketching the image by hand.
The printed photo was always close by and I used it to reference the details of the shapes.
Although my background is specifically not in art, I have had art classes and was able to copy the lines to the best of my ability on the purse.
I started with the top of the head at the top of the purse and worked my way to the ears.
After placing the ears, I continued to move down the face, adding the details of the eyes, nose, mouth and chin. The last drawn piece was the robe, which I didn't actually do the details for at this point.
As you can probably tell, I didn't add the lightsaber but kept the angle of the facial features pretty much the same as they were shown on the picture I had.
*I did not use pencil on the leather purse. See Step 9.*
Step 4: Outline the Drawing
With the black markers or various thicknesses of the artist pens, outline the details of the sketch done in pencil. The great thing about the set I have is that there are super fine, fine, medium and bold thicknesses of black pens in one package. I'm sure that could be done with Sharpies as well, but this is how I drew it.
Hopefully you will be able to go right over the pencil lines for this. For some of the lines, you may want to change a small angle to get the drawing to look like the picture or add your own artistic touch.
Again, I started at the top of the purse, completed the ears, eyes, nose, mouth and then chin/jawline.
I colored in the eyes of the face last, ensuring that I left the two small circles in the eyeball that adds depth to the drawing.
The last penciled in and marked in item was the details of the robe.
Step 5: Color Details of the Face
I used a silver permanent pen to color in the hair, eye dots, and whites of the eyes.
In the photo I had, Yoda's eyes are yellow so I used a yellow permanent marker to color the iris'.
Lastly, I used a green permanent marker, in my case a fabric marker I had on hand to emphasis the black lines. I used the printed photo as a guide to place the green colors, drawn and placed where the darker shades of green were on the picture. It was not random, other than one or two places I thought needed additional color, including the ears, on the purse.
Step 6: Color the Robe
I used a brown Sharpie marker to color in the robe.
Throughout the coloring process I would take a fine tip black art pen and add a few dark lines in the same direction as the brown strokes. I added black lines here and there to add depth to the robe, always in the same direction as the strokes of the brown marker unless I was clearly remarking the outline.
Because the picture I had was not exactly the way I show the robe on my purse, I had to make up what I thought the robe would look like. I added a couple lines in the front where the robe would fall together. I also kept the look of a hood off to the side of the robe, as shown in the picture.
Step 7: Add Details
With a different thicknesses of gold permanent pens, I scrubbed over the green lines in some locations to highlight various areas of the forehead and mouth.
The permanent gold pen I have is an old scrapbooking pen that pushes the tip down to release the ink and has a rougher surface than the felt-tipped markers.
The marks were subtle and light, but add a contrast to the cartoon look of the drawing.
The ink for all the permanent markers appears to rub off a tiny bit, so I knew I had to place some sort of coating over the top of the drawing so it would last. The acrylic coating recommendation is in both Doodlecraft's Star Wars shoes and PenfoldPlant's Painting Leather Shoes tutorials.
Step 8: Coat With Acrylic Spray - Only for Non-leather
I used an acrylic spray for a clear coat over the top of the drawing, so that the ink wouldn't smudge.
I tested a small spot on the bottom of the purse to see what kind of effect the spray would give to the purse. The pleather soaked up (or kept the spray on the surface) just nicely so I continued with the surface of the art work.
I set the can at least eight inches away from the purse to coat it and let it dry for about two hours.
*Do not use any top coat of any kind on the leather purse. It will ruin the color. See Step 9.*
Step 9: Drawing on the Leather Purse
As stated throughout this instructable, the leather purse is done a little differently than the pleather purse shown in the previous steps.
First of all, I simply cleaned the purse using a dry paper towel to wipe up any loose particles of dirt or grime. I didn't rub the paper towel too hard either, as I didn't want the leather to get anymore scratched than it already was.
As this was a previously used purse, you can see from the photos that the corners of the purse were already discolored from use.
Using the same print-out for the pleather purse, I COULD NOT use a pencil to mark out lines, and I will tell you that I tried. The pencil was not chalky enough to leave a mark, and without any real way to erase it, I just started to free-hand sketch the lines with the black art pens.
I started at the top of the head again and drew the ears, forehead details, eyes, nose, mouth and chin/jawline, in that order, just as I had done with the other purse.
I colored in the details of the hair and eyes prior to placing the green marker for the details of the facial features. I used all the same pens as described in the previous steps.
I colored in the robe with the same brown sharpie marker I used before, and highlighted certain areas with the gold tipped scrapbooking marker mentioned in Step 7.
I DID NOT spray the purse with any acrylic spray, although I will admit I tried it on the bottom of the purse to see what would happen. Just as I suspected, the spray turned the purse a darker color.
The permanent marker has not smudged (yet) on the purse and I don't expect that it will.
Overall, I love it. I have gotten photos taken of it by complete strangers, I have been asked more times than I can count if I hand drew the pattern and where I got it, the list of questions goes on and on.
Thanks for reading this! I hope you try to upcycle a purse in the near future too!