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  • Writer's pictureMonika Matusiewicz

Romantic suitcase tutorial

Today I would like to show you an idea of the decorating old suitcases. Suitcase can be a beautiful addition to the interior, decoration on vintage style wedding (eg for storing greeting cards), for shop window decoration, etc.

What we need:

- an old suitcase (can you find it in second hand shops, antique auctions, etc.) - Universal primer and your favourite brush (I prefer flat brushes with nylon bristles) - decoupage glue

- water, bowl, piece of cellophane and paper towel

- classic or rice paper of your choice. I used for this project classic paper (click) but you can work with other papers like large rice paper (click), small rice paper (click) or napkins (click) All depends how big is your suitcase

- also you need a bit of acrylic paint in colours similar to the background of your paper, or the background colour that you want to obtain

- for shadows you have several options to get the desired effect:- acrylic paint + blending gel (click) to get shadows in any colour- patina in paste mixed with solvent to get semitransparent liquid patina

- for finish I used varnish (click) and decorative corners . Also stencils of your choice (some designs available in our shop here click)

Now we are ready to start. First wash your suitcase to remove any dust and grease stains, wait till dry and cover with universal primer.

Choose the paper and decide on where you want to place it.

Tear paper edges to get jagged edge. It will be much easier to blend paper into the background

The classic paper requires soaking before gluing (to avoid wrinkles and bubbles). Place the paper in a bowl of water for 2-3 minutes

Dry with paper towels

Place the paper face down on cellophane sheet and cover the back with decoupage glue

Transfer paper with cellophane onto your suitcase and place in desired position

Using a piece of cloth or paper towel and remove any air bubbles. Start from the middle of the paper, pressing the paper to the surface. Remove cellophane and apply glue on paper.

Now should be photos of the background painting process, but unfortunately I lost all the pictures. All principles are similar, as in the previous suitcase tutorial here: (click) . So after removing the paper excess at the edges of the suitcase, and aligning the edges of the paper (of course using sandpaper), we paint whole suitcase using a sponge. Try to choose colours similar to your paper. Before adding shadows, varnish whole suitcase few times.

Now is time to add shadows around decoupage to add some depth. I like monochrome shadows, so I used dark brown paint mixed with blending gel. Apply mixture around and work using small piece of sponge (or sponge brush) Remember- because of blending gel paint dries much longer, so if you want to add some darker shadows, wait till dry.

In a meantime you can add stencil work. Simply place stencil in position, secure with masking tape, and apply paint using stencil brush.

Once you happy with effect wait till dry (preferably overnight or longer) and varnish few times.

My suitcase had badly damaged corners, so I hid them using decorative brass corners


If you like my tutorial, feel free to use it in your work, but please remember to give credit where credit is due.

All photos are Reverie-Art property and protected by copyright. Do not copy any part of this tutorial without permission.

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