Handmade Couture: Make this look - A Large Brunello Leather Tote

6/09/2017 08:06:00 AM

Are you or someone you love a designer handbag enthusiast? Do you sometimes find yourself staring at bags you see in magazines, or even on someone's shoulder in the grocery store wondering how to recreate that bag? Then the Handmade Couture series is for you. We pick a designer bag and tell you how to recreate it using available sewing patterns, materials and hardware.  You can have the same look, but make it totally "you" and for a fraction of the cost. When you sew your own bag you know exactly what is going into the bag and can add or modify features to suit your preferences. Today, we are going to show you how to recreate this Brunello Cucinelli Large Metallic Leather Tote:

Talk about making a bold statement at the pool! This lush bag is made with a beautiful metallic leather, and comes with a matching zipper pouch. The metallic leather is a stand out on this bag, and it's simple but classic. It measures: 15" W x 7.75" D x 15" H.  This lovely is available for pre-order and it could be yours for the tune of 2875 USD. 

Like the look of the Brunello Cucinelli Leather Tote?  Lets be our own brand.

Pattern + Hardware + Fabric= Handmade Couture


The Poolside Tote by Noodlehead Patterns is the perfect starting point to recreate our inspiration bag. The Poolside tote has a very similar shape and size. She measures: 14.5" Wx 14.5" H x 7.5" D. The Noodlehead tote features bold straps that run the complete exterior panel of our bag, and is ROOMY, just like our inspiration bag. 

Additionally, the Poolside tote has two different pocket options for the exterior, so you can choose your favorite or leave the exterior plain as in our inspiration bag. To rectreate the Brunello, we will modify the exterior and lining panels of the bag to cut straight across. Simply avoid cutting out the curve along the top of the panels.


We need very little hardware to recreate this tote, a simple Metal Bag label will add the same touch of class:


If you wanted to recreate our inspiration bag, you can find a similar leather like this gold metallic skin from the Tannery NYC. 

Add some black leather for the straps, like this skin also from The Tannery NYC.

If leather isn't something that you aren't comfortable using, you can find a fauc leather that would work well for the same look of our inspiration bag, like this gold faux leather.

Another great option is natural cork fabric, which is available from MM Cork Supply in Canada or from Sew Sweetness in the US.  You can get cork in a various colors and finishes, like this natural with gold flecks:

Pair this with a black cork and you have a perfect recreation of our inspiration bag. 

You can choose to do this in whatever fabric you are comfortable working with! A fun cotton print, canvas or even denim!  That's the benefit of creating your own, it's what YOU want it to be. Handmade can be couture too!

Photos and content provided and written for Emmaline Bags by Cyndi Farfsing, from The Nosy Pepper. Cyndi's blog is chock is full of more bag photos and make making tips. Check out her bag series "It's in the Bag! Better Bag Making Series," to learn a ton of new bag making skills.

Share your projects made from Emmaline patterns and/or with Emmaline hardware in our facebook group Emmaline Sewing Patterns Group, or on instagram with the hashtags #emmalinehardware, #emmalinepatterns, #emmalinebags, or tag us @emmalinebags.


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  1. Another terrific idea for making a better than couture bag! Great suggestions and blog! Thanks for more inspiration.


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The contents of this blog, including text, original photos and ideas are the sole property of the author. If you intend to use my text or images, please link back to this blog and give credit to Emmaline Bags & Patterns. A notification email would be greatly appreciated too! Please do not ever republish an entire post, any tutorials, or post photos of my family. Thank you, Janelle