I can’t remember when my obsession with everything Disney started, but I know exactly why I love it. It may have something to do with it being completely immersive, nostalgic and magical. I have always loved wearing unique and maybe, over the top outfits to the Disney theme parks, and because of this I am always trying to think of unique ways to add a bit of magic and sparkle to my outfits.Vintage Disney lunchboxes are a big trend right now and what better way to utilise a vintage accessory than adding a DIY touch and blinging it up. I sourced this Mickey Mouse vintage lunchbox from Ebay (after months of searching and waiting). Crystal Parade was recommended to me and I now know why: they stock a huge range of craft rhinestones in different shapes, colours and sizes. I chose the Preciosa non hotfix crystals in Apricot (for Mickey’s skin), White Opal (for his eyes) and Jet black for his ears and head. I chose 5mm for his skin so it was quite consistent throughout, but for his black fur I chose to use different sizes (ranging from 2mm to 7mm) to create a texture-like appearance.I started with his main features (eyes and nose) then moved onto the skin, before tackling the head and ears. I placed all the flatback crystals I was using in different groups of sizes onto a hard surface. I put glue on the area that I was about to embellish, then I used a rhinestone picker (dual-ended) to pick up and place the crystals, and move them around until I was happy with their position. You really can pick up speed when doing this once you’re in the zone. This is also coming from someone who has zero patience!I was absolutely thrilled with him once he was finished. He was the perfect quirky vintage clutch bag for the parks and Disney adventures. Every time I use him, I get so many compliments. People even ask for photos with him, including Mickey and Minnie themselves!It didn’t take long until I realised that I needed matching ears. I sourced some plain faux-leather Mickey ears from the Shop Disney website and repeated the process with the same sized non hotfix crystals I used for the ears on the lunchbox.

Decorating accessories with rhinestones became a bit of a hobby, especially during the pandemic lockdown. I was planning an outfit with a blue puffy dress to subtly mimic a Princess Cinderella style outfit for a Disney Cruise, and I wanted to bling up my old silver platforms to give a ‘glass slipper’ appearance. I used Preciosa non-hotfix Labrador (silver) crystals in a variety of sizes to crystallize the platform and heel. I felt like such a princess wearing these and they didn’t take too long to do!My current project is a rhinestone decorated vintage Mickey hat to match the lunchbox using the same coloured crystals.

Every time I finish one rhinestone project, I think of something else I want to crystallize. There is so much you can make unique – from Nike trainers, sandals for the summer, words on a t-shirt, handbags etc. It’s easy and doesn’t require any specific skill, but you do end up with something unique and special! Everything I have made is extremely durable and hardy. I must have dropped the lunchbox over a dozen times and the crystals have lasted and not fallen off. They still sparkle despite the wear and tear!

Craft & diy