Rayela Art Paper Purse, Recycled Dog Food Bag ”Candy”


Wearable art made by Rachel Biel of Rayela Art: recycled dog food paper bag! Plus tutorial on how to make a paper purse, using the candywrapper technique.

1 in stock


I made this!!! A paper purse made out of the outer wrappings of dog food bags.

Purses like this one have achieved acclaim as folk art, especially among prisoners who have made them out of cigarette wrappers. I’ve always been intrigued by how they were constructed and loved the woven look. I made my first one out of wallpaper sample books and the rest since then have been out of the outer paper that covers dog food bags.

Dimensions: 11″ wide x 11″ high (including handle)
Metric: 28 cm wide x 28 cm high

When I first saw purses like this for sale, they were always a fortune. Ha! Now I know why. They take a long time to make!

Lately, though, I’ve seen cheap versions available on eBay as well as several fair trade groups have been making them for around $30. Please note that they are using larger pieces of paper, the purses are a lot smaller, they don’t have any surface decoration and that they are imported. Not necessarily cheap labor, but a different currency.

I am very pleased with the results of my purses and extremely proud of myself. The others have sold and now you have the opportunity to own this piece as wearable art. Yes, it is functional, but I see “Candy” more as an art piece than as a purse.

I’ve never seen anyone incorporate buttons or beads into these bags and I think this makes my pieces especially interesting. I used a mixture of vintage and salvaged buttons on this one. One side is primarily purple and the other, red. Note that the woven paper at the top calls out to the buttons and are also red or purple.

A magnetic button serves as a closure at the top.

The purse has over 500 pieces of folded paper in it. I was going to keep track of the time it took to make it, but I made it over several months and lost track. I do know there were at least six of the biggest dog food bags involved, plus three or four medium ones and a couple small ones. Whew! (Yes, I have some monsters to feed…)

Shipping on this purse is free worldwide.

See my Rayela Art profile on TAFA!

If you would like to see a tutorial on how to make them, we have one right here on TAFA!

Candywrapper Purse Tutorial

candywrapper tutorial

Candywrapper Tutorial