How to Add Swarovski Crystals to Leather

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Swarovski crystals can be used to embellish leather pieces such as shoes, bags, belts, picture frames and clothing to create a personalized look. Adding Swarovski crystals to leather is more difficult than gluing them onto plastic materials, as leather contains natural oils and has a smooth surface that can prevent the crystals from sticking properly.

Things You'll Need

  • Swarovski crystals
  • Tweezers
  • Leather
  • Sandpaper
  • Industrial strength craft adhesive
  • Newspaper

Preparation

  • Lay out newspaper on top of the work area to prevent damage to any surfaces.

  • Scatter the crystals over a spot on the newspaper, and use the tweezers to turn them so that each crystal is laying sparkly side up.

  • Rub the sandpaper gently over the desired area on the leather to create small bumps and grooves, which gives the glue a rough surface to grab.

Applying the Rhinestones

  • Put a droplet of adhesive onto the specific spot where you want to place the crystal. The droplet should be slightly smaller than the size of the Swarovski crystal. You may want to practice on a scrap piece of material first to perfect the technique.

  • Pick up the Swarovski crystal immediately with the tweezers, gently squeezing at the sides, and place the crystal onto the glue droplet and gently press down with the edge of the tweezers, allowing it to set.

  • Repeat this process until you have reached your desired effect.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use an adhesive that is either designed for crystals or that dries clear.
  • Don't attach the crystals to areas of clothing that have to withstand a lot of abrasion.

References

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