How to Repair Scratches on Vinyl Handbags

Handbags can become the main piece of a woman's attire.

When something happens to that favorite vinyl handbag, it does not mean the purse has to retire to the garbage bin. Save money and time searching for another bag with some easy repairs. Repairing scratches on vinyl handbags is a simple project anyone can do to save that functional accessory.

Fill a bowl with warm water. Squeeze two drops of mild dish-washing detergent into the bowl. Mix the soap and water with your fingers until suds form. Dip a washcloth into the soapy water and ring out until damp. Rub the washcloth over the scratches on the vinyl handbag to remove any dirt or debris. Rinse the area with a washcloth dampened with clean water. Towel dry the area.

Pour a small amount of 70-percent rubbing alcohol onto a lint-free rag. Rub the dampened rag over the scratches on the vinyl. Allow the area to dry. Alcohol removes soap residue.

Trim any loose threads poking out of the scratches on the vinyl with a sharp pair of cuticle scissors.

Place a tiny amount of repair compound, included with the vinyl-repair kit, onto the kit's spreading tool. Thinly spread this compound so it overlaps by a 1/2 inch surrounding the scratches.

Wet your fingertip with water and smooth the compound edges. Allow the repair compound to thoroughly dry.

Wipe the spreading tool on a towel to remove any leftover repair compound. Repeat the spreading application until the scratches on the vinyl handbag are filled, allowing for drying time between each application.

Rub a lint-free cloth dampened with alcohol over the repair area to smooth the surface. Rub lightly so the repair compound stays in place.

Apply the spray grain included with the vinyl-repair kit, according to package directions, to replicate the surrounding textured surface, if any.

Mask the areas surrounding the repair area with painter's tape. Dip a small paintbrush into the matching color paint included with the vinyl-repair kit. Apply a very thin coat, and allow the repair area to dry for 20 minutes. Brush on additional thin, even layers with the matching paint until it matches the rest of the vinyl handbag. Allow the color paint to completely dry between each new layer.

Rub a vinyl conditioner over the entire handbag.

Things You Will Need

  • Bowl
  • Mild dish-washing detergent
  • Washcloth
  • Towels
  • 70-percent rubbing alcohol
  • Lint-free rags
  • Cuticle scissors
  • Vinyl-repair kit
  • Painter's tape
  • Small paintbrush
  • Vinyl conditioner

About the Author

Rachel Turner has been writing professionally since 2000, focusing on gardening and home improvement topics. Her articles have appeared online at SlowTravel and in publications such as the "Arkansas Gardeners," "One Step Ahead" and "Writers Now." Turner holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Arkansas State University.