DIY Custom Bag Fun - With Olivia Wilde, Alternative Apparel, and P.S. I Made This
If you thought that working in the fashion industry involved going to lots of fashion shows, hanging out with supermodels at glamorous cocktail parties, schmoozing over dinners at trendy restaurants, and toasting the cause-du-jour at celebrity-studded benefits—well, you'd be right. But, once in a while, fashion editors like to kick back—take a break from our hard, hard lives (kidding)—and get down and dirty with some DIY.
Last night, Olivia Wilde, Alternative Apparel, and Shopbop teamed up to host a DIY customize-your-own-bag party to celebrate the launch of Alternative Apparel's super-cool "Message Bag"—a limited-edition collab between Wilde and her friend Barbara Burchfield that benefits the Academy for Peace and Justice, a secondary school in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
Check out our photos from the event:
"I've been trying to figure out how to combine conscious commerce with my love for fashion," Wilde said. As for working with Alternative Apparel—which is, by the way, one of our favorite brands out there, not only because they make the softest, coziest clothes ever, but because of the company's commitment to ethical and environmentally responsible production practices—"I wear their sweatshirts every day," Wilde said. "And I live in their maxi dresses. They're good people!"
At last night's event in the garden at David Burke's Kitchen at The James Hotel in SoHo, Erica Domasek—reality TV star and P.S. I Made This queen of all DIY—laid out a buffet of crafty yumminess for us to play with.
If you want to replicate the experience at home—maybe, for a DIY party with your girlfriends?—you'll need stencils, paint pens, Sharpies, masking tape, safety pins, charms, studs and spikes, and anything else you'd like to glue/tape/stab onto whatever you're decorating.
Here's the stack of "Message Bags" we got to play with. You can get one for yourself here at Shopbop.
And here are some ideas for DIY-ing:
Since the bag can be carried as either a backpack or a satchel, there are endless ways you can approach this project. Domasek customized one, above, with her initials, and then she spiked the backpack straps for a cool-but-tough downtown look.
Domasek embellished the satchel-side of the bag with studs—in the shape of a bow!
If you want to make the Chevron-stripe patter on the bag in the background, it's easy—just place masking tape where you want the lines to be and color around them with paint pens. This one was done with a silver paint pen.
Here's the bag—we're obsessed with it. It's versatile, not too flashy, goes with everything, and a portion of the proceeds go to a good cause! And look how cute it looks on Olivia:
Not only is Alternative Apparel donating a portion of its proceeds from the sale of this bag to the school in Haiti, but the company has a made an ongoing commitment to donate bags, backpacks and supplies to the Academy of Peace and Justice throughout the year.
Last night's event was so fun! All the editors there really got into the DIY project.
Are you a big DIY-er? Tell us about some of your creations in the comments, below!