Lunchtime pursetime

The larger lunchbox to purse project

I picked up two skull and cross bone lunch boxes from a craft store not too long ago – one is smaller than the other (treat size?) while the other one is a small lunchbox size.  (Enough for your juice box, sandwich, and carrot sticks.)  I don’t use a lunch box really (I bring my lunch to work as often as I can, but typically it’s all piled up in my bag along with my files and other things instead.) but I really wanted to turn these into little purses!  The smaller one is more of a bar purse, just large enough for cell phone, iPod, keys, credit card, ID and a lipstick, while the larger one can hold my wallet, camera, and the assortment of other things I bring with me.  Admittedly, it’s not the most graceful purse, so it’s not really an every-day kind of thing… but cute isn’t always graceful.  (With skulls and cross bones, ‘graceful’ is probably off the table anyways!)

To convert these into purses, I first needed to punch a hole in either side of the sides – for this I just used the punch, an anvil (with some scrap leather on the bottom to avoid scratching the surface) and a hammer.  You can get these punches at leather and crafting stores.  It should be a punched out hole, rather than making the hole with an awl (or a sharp nail, etc) because the metal will catch things inside the purse if it’s not smooth.

I picked up those captured d-rings at a wholesale supplier (though you might be able to find them at a leather/craft store as well) and used a matching rivet to set it into the lunch box.  For this I needed the hammer, anvil, scrap leather, and a rivet setter as well.  (You don’t really need a rivet setter, but it keeps the nice smooth dome on the rivet – otherwise they flatten out.)

From there I sewed up a strap from leftover strapping material (It isn’t webbing; it’s finer than that) with a d-ring in it as well and a slide buckle to make it adjustable.  I clipped two clips onto the strap ends, and then attached those to the captured d-rings.  The skull bead is from another project (the corseted hip belt from my Sultan’s Tent costume) and it’s just attached with a piece of leather cord for decoration.

To follow up – I might decide to line these with felt in the future – when keys or other metallic objects are in here, it’s pretty noisy when I’m carrying the purse!


I’ve showed a lot of purses lately – let me know in the comments section which one is your favorite, or if you’ve had the chance to make your own!

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