Have you ever wanted to give an old vintage suitcase a new look? So, even if your suitcase is different, this tutorial will get you started.
I got a great deal on this old suitcase over a year ago. It’s been hanging around all this time just waiting for it’s makeover. It was marked $20, but this booth was ½ off. Did you know my usual limit is $5?
Supplies and materials needed to re-line a vintage suitcase
- Scissors (my favorite)
- Craft/Wrapping Paper
- Homeright Finish Max (optional)
- Fabric (the fabric in this project was purchased at Wal-mart)
- Fabric Glue (optional)
Jump to: Part 1 How To Make A Vintage Suitcase Lining (video tutorial)
Jump to: How To Line A Vintage Suitcase (video tutorial)
Step 1 Carefully Remove Old Lining of Luggage
Carefully remove the lining one piece at a time, saving all pieces to make a pattern. Taking pictures along the way may help you to remember how to reassemble your lining. Of course you can go by memory, but not me!
Step 2 Scrape and Sand Cardboard
The smoother your surface, the nicer your new lining will look. Scrape away old glue and cardboard. Use a sanding sponge to get the smoothest surface. So, would you believe it? The keys to this suitcase were UNDER the lining!
Step 3 Prime Your Vintage Suitcase Inside and Out
Use primer on your suitcase inside and out to give it the best look. A Finish Max makes quick work of this.
Using scrap wood to hold the suitcase open will allow the metal painted edges to dry without sticking. But, if you prefer, you could tape off the metal hardware pieces to leave them in their natural state. Why didn't I leave the metal? Because I like the look of the white paint, and I wanted an easy makeover.
Step 4 Paint the old suitcase
However, if you're looking for something even easier? Spray paint is also a great option.
Step 5 Cut Paper Pattern
Make paper patterns using craft paper or thick wrapping paper by tracing the original pieces. These paper pieces will give added stiffness to your new fabric lining pieces. Make the paper pieces the same size as the original pieces-not counting the hems or seam allowances.
Step 6 Cut Fabric pieces
Cut fabric using paper patterns. But this time leaving room for a seam allowance.
Step 7 secure fabric pieces to paper pattern
Secure fabric to paper pattern pieces. Spray adhesive was used for this step (not shown). Fabri-Tac was used to fold over and “hem” this piece to test for fit. (seen below)
Step 8 Test fit pieces
Test each piece after you have secured the fabric and paper pattern using the spray adhesive. Use caution when using spray adhesive as it leaves a sticky residue wherever it lands.
Step 9 Form a plan for placement
By test fitting your pieces, you will see the order in which it will best work for permanent placement.
Step 10 Hem form fitted pieces with glue
Another option to Fabric-Tac is a kid’s school glue stick. It’s a little more forgiving if you need to reposition your fabric. After doing the dry fit you will clearly see that some of the form fitting pieces need to be hemmed, but other pieces are better left with “flaps” for better coverage. Of course, your vintage suitcase may be different.
Step 11 Secure pieces to the suitcase with hot glue
This image shows why some pieces work better if the edges are not turned under (hemmed). Hot Glue was used where the paper ends on the top and bottom of the suitcase securing only the FABRIC and not the paper so that the lid will close freely.
Work your way through all the pieces in the order you determine works best for the suitcase you’re working on.
Are you still with me?
Adding a small amount of hot glue at a time, and working your way across the piece will give the best adhesion. Adding too much glue will allow the glue to cool before you get the entire piece secured.
How to Make a Vintage Suitcase Lining
How to Line a Vintage Suitcase
Be sure to check out more great ideas from my Thrift Store Décor friends below:
Painted Desk Makeover My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Anything Container Petticoat Junktion
Farmhouse Sign Refresh Restyle
Thrift Store Teacup Candle Domestically Speaking
Vintage Suitcase Makeover My Repurposed Life
Banded Basket Makeover Our Southern Home
I like the fabric that you lined the suitcase with. I have an old suitcase my mother used in the 1930s and 1940s. I took it and cleaned it up, it is metal on the outside. But I didn't paint it. I have attached it to a wooden frame that used to hold a tv set. It is just the right height for a bed side table in my bedroom. I love to use it as it reminds me of my mother.
What a wonderful tribute to your mother! It sounds like it is perfect just as you did it. Thanks for sharing your story with us.
This turned out beautifully. I wonder if you can use contact paper to line the suitcase instead of fabric.
I'm not sure if Contact paper would work, but it couldn't hurt to try. Keep us posted on how it goes, k?
WOW !!!! So pretty great job & now I must make me one ,,,might add white & pink pom poms on mine....You can send it to me when you are ready to retire it .....Thanks for sharing..
Sounds like a very fun project Marthaia!! 🙂
If you do it, please share here on MRL. https://www.myrepurposedlife.com/qa-submit-projects/
I have two suitcases i walk by a hundred times a day, and I always think I should paint at least one of them. Maybe you've inspired me?
I hope I have inspired you, at least the next time you walk by those suitcases, maybe I'll cross your mind? heheheh
Maryann @ Domestically Speaking
Love it - that fabric is so pretty & you did an awesome custom job!
Christy @ Our Southern Home
This turned beautifully! I have a stack of old suitcases that I need to try this with!
It really was easier than I thought it would be. I have one more around here somewhere, I may do it with something else.
This turned out so great! I have 2 from my grandparents, I'll have to give it a try 🙂
I seriously think you should do at least one of them. It's fairly easy, and I'm not all that good with a glue gun. 🙂
Oh! I need to do this. Fancy!
Looks really nice. Thanks for the step by step instructions.
I just love the suitcase it is beautiful and the Paris lining is perfect.
Thank you so much Lynne! I appreciate you stopping by and leaving a comment. I'm still trying to figure out what to do with the outside of the suitcase.