How to Make a Bracelet Using Barbie Shoes + Clutch Purse Giftbag

I wanted to make a bracelet for my sister’s birthday.  She is into vintage Barbie clothes.  Here is what I made for her – A Barbie Shoe Bracelet.

Make a Bracelet using Barbie Shoes

I celebrated my birthday, too since I am a twin.    My sis is officially in the record books – 5 minutes older than me!  She is my twin sister, Carol.  She is the one on the right, I am on the left of our “little sister” Laura on her wedding day.


We have always made good bookends for her and always add instant symmetry to all of our “sister” photos.   In this photo I am the one bending down and Carol is on the left.

Sisters on OCNJ

People have always asked us, What is it like being a twin?  Did you ever switch classes in school? Switch boyfriends, fill in for each other on the job?    Who’s smarter, taller, skinner, funnier, nicer, meaner,  etc, etc, etc…  We never thought we looked alike and would get away with any shenanigans, so the answer is no to trying to fool people.   When I was in 7th grade I had to write an  autobiography. I titled it, They Call Me Carol, But I ‘m Diane.  That is the best way I can describe what it is like being a twin – I can answer to two names along with having a built- in buddy.  Being a twin is really no different than being a “single”.  Our twin-ness  makes us look alike, but we are very different in many ways.

I wanted to give Carol something special for our birthday, something that would make her smile, something she would treasure always.  She collects vintage Barbie clothes.   A bracelet with Barbie shoes came to mind and would be just her style.   I planned on completing it a month ago to arrive on our birthday, but that didn’t happen.    One month later – it is finally complete.  I am going to show you how-to make a bracelet out of Barbie Shoes and fun gift- bag that resembles another vintage Barbie accessory.

Here is the collection of shoes I found to make the bracelet.  I got them on ebay.  Type in “Reproduction Vintage Barbie Shoes”.  The real vintage shoes are pretty expensive, so look for the reproductions.

To start, using a bead hole expander or awl, make a hole in the back of each shoe.

How to make a Barbie Shoe Bracelet

Then put a jump ring through it.  You may have to use a pair of needle-nose pliers to get the ring in the hole.  If the shoe is made of hard plastic it is pretty easy to get through. The rubbery feeling shoes took a little more effort.

How to make a Barbie Shoe Bracelet

Then just start attaching them to a bracelet chain.  I used 20 shoes.

DIY Barbie Shoe Bracelet

I also added some pearls and crystals to add some contrast.

The completed bracelet.

How to make a Shoe Bracelet

Now that the bracelet is finished I wanted to make something that said “Barbie” to put it in for a fun presentation.   One of the most stylish accessories I remember as a child dressing Barbie in the 1960’s in her knock off Dior’s and Givenchy’s was a clutch style handbag.  Carol and I always referred to it as “the Barbie purse”.  We each had the silver version, but some of our friends had it in corduroy or gold lame.  I thought I could make the gift-bag resemble the vintage “Barbie purse” making the gift all the more fun for Carol to receive.

How to make a purse gift bag

I am going to wrap the bracelet in colorful tissue paper and place it in the Barbie Purse.

Gift Bag ideas

How to make a purse gift bag

How To Make the Clutch Purse Gift Bag


File Folder
Decorative paper or foil if you want to cover the file folder
Spray glue or a glue stick
Velcro tab
1/4″ diameter Pearl bead, needle, and white thread or embroidery floss
1/4″ width Red Liner double stick tape
Ruler, Scissors, Pencil, Craft knife

1.  Here is the image of  the template.  Download the link below and size on a copy machine if needed, so it is as wide as a  file folder – 11 1/2″.

Template for Clutch Purse Gift Bag

Click the link below to download a pdf. file of the template:

Barbie_Purse template

2.  Trace the pattern onto a file folder, making sure to place the center directly over the  fold on the file folder.  This will be the bottom of the bag.  Mark score lines (broken lines) on file folder.  Using a ruler and  the tip of a pair of scissors or the open end of a paperclip, score along the broken lines.  Cut out the bag with a craft knife and ruler instead of a pair of scissors, you will get straighter lines

Pattern for Making a Gift Bag

3. Fold pre-made score lines that came on the folder and the ones you just made  towards you.  This starts to form the purse.

File Folder Handbag Gift Bag

4.  Turn the purse over so the outside of the purse is face down.  Cut a piece of foil large enough to cover one side of the purse, leaving at least  1/2″ overlap.  Lay foil shiny side down on a work surface. Spray the dull side with spray adhesive.  Spray the back of the purse.  Let it get tacky and then carefully smooth foil over the bag making sure there are no air bubbles or large creases.

How to make a clutch purse gift bag with a file folder

5.  Turn purse back over.  Trim foil by cutting tabs into the excess.  Run a glue stick on the outer edge of bag and fold the tabs over.  Gift wrapping ideas for girls

6.   Using another piece of foil, trace flap and cut  the shape out of the foil.  Spray glue on dull side of foil and place on the inside flap.  Smooth and trim if necessary.

Gift wrapping idea for girls

6.  Place a piece of Red Liner clear double stick tape along one side’s tab and place front over matching edges to form purse.  Repeat on other side.

Gift wrapping idea for girls

7. Sew a bead onto front of flap.  Place Velcro tab with loop and hook sides already joined to under side of flap to cover the stitches.  Close purse so the other side of the Velcro will attach to the body of the purse.  Make sure they are lined up.

Gift wrapping ideas for girls

Variation #1

Tissue paper flower instead of a single pearl clasp.

How to make tissue paper flowers


1 piece of tissue paper, bead or button, stapler, hot glue and gun, scissors

1.  Fold tissue paper in half and cut in half. Lay pieces on top of each other and fold in half and cut again on fold.  Keep doing this step until you have a stack of tissue paper that measures approx. 3″ square.

2.  Staple center.  Using scissors, shape square into a circle.  Cut petals into circle by cutting from edge into center. Repeat cuts all around.   Fluff with fingers to make flower come to life. Hot glue bead over staple.  Glue onto flap of Barbie Purse instead of the single sewn on pearl.

Gift wrapping ideas for girls

Variation # 2

Beaded Bag

To make the Barbie Purse totally glamorous you can cover it with teeny tiny beads or glitter.  After cutting out the bag from the file folder, cover entire outer side,( except last scored line that will fold over) with a sheet of Red Liner clear double stick tape.  Remove the backing from the sheet.  Dip the purse in a tray filled with teeny tiny beads or glitter. Roll it over and over to make sure all areas are covered.  Finish assembling bag according to directions.

Fun, colorful, and chic bracelet to give to your fashion loving girlfriends.  The bracelet is made from Barbie shoes, the clutch a file folder. | In My Own Style



  1. Johanna says

    I LOVE that bracelet! What a fabulous gift! You have such creative ideas! One of my best friends loves Barbie. Hmm I wonder if I could find some of those shoes…
    Thank you so much for sharing your fabulous ideas and tutorials!!

  2. says

    Hi Diane !
    I am Spanish and mother of 4 boys. The last two, they are twins. Very good way to explain what you feel to be twin.
    One day after school with my children, one of them was with me and the other played a little further . A girl came up and asked:
    -Ferran, which is there is you, or your brother?
    I laugh out loud!
    I love the bracelet!

    I think my English is very bad, sorry … but I hope you understand me ;-)


  1. […] I saw this so chic, Barbie Bracelet and Clutch she designed for her sister’s birthday gift. They Call Me Carol, But I’m Diane, is a show and tell on how to create both. Right now Diane is celebrating her 100th post with a […]

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