How to Dye a Leather Purse

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Dyeing leather isn't a highly complicated process, but it does require some planning. Make sure you have the right materials before beginning the process of dyeing your leather purse.

Things You'll Need

  • leather dye
  • vegetable tanned leather purse
  • well-ventilated work space
  • brush
  • buffing cloth
  • top coat sealant
  • Make sure the purse to be dyed is a vegetable tanned item. Vegetable-tanned leather is compatible with the widest variety of dyes. Generally, vegetable-tanned leather is dry and stiff, like cardboard, and is lighter in color. If it is not a vegetable tanned purse, make sure the dye to be used is compatible with other types of tanned leather.

  • Remove any surface dirt or dust from the purse. If the purse was dampened during cleaning, make sure it dries completely before beginning the dye process.

  • Stuff the inside of the bag with newspaper or another material so it holds its shape and doesn't bend or move during the dyeing and drying processes.

  • Apply the dye to either all or parts of the purse (as you prefer) using a brush. Completely cover the areas to be dyed and make sure the color is applied evenly for a smooth finish. If the dye is too dark or to thick, it can be thinned with water and then applied in layers. Make sure each layer dries completely before adding the next layer.

  • Let the purse dry completely, or for at least 24 hours, after applying the final coat of dye.

  • Buff the surface of the bag with a soft cloth. This removes any excess dye and gives the bag a smooth, uniform finish.

  • Coat the outside of the dyed, buffed bag with a finishing product. This seals the newly dyed leather and makes sure the new color doesn't rub off on other items or clothing. Different sealant products offer either matte or shiny finishes, depending on the desired look.

Tips & Warnings

  • Read all instructions on the dye bottle before beginning the process. Make sure it can be thinned with water before adding water; some dyes cannot be thinned.

References

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