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Style DIY: A studded tuxedo leather blazer à la Balmain

I had this leather tuxedo blazer that no one wanted to buy off me (boo!), so I decided to keep it but change it a little to make it more interesting.

This was my inspiration, a $5000 (at retail), and $1395 (at resale)  Balmain studded blazer. The design of the studs are staggered at the end but I decided to go all the way to the end. It is MY blazer after all, I don’t want to copy it 100%, just take inspiration 😉

You can see it on very cool, chic Editors who are part of my style inspiration such as Emmanuelle Alt:

They wear it simply, which is what I plan on doing although my legs are nowhere as skinny.

Frankly, I should absolutely be avoiding Balmain at all costs because the brand loves to emphasize a strong shoulder, and I already have naturally strong, wide shoulders.

Still…. I’m drawn to their aesthetic like a moth to a flame.


I started with this:

Not bad right?

Cute, serviceable… but not quite something.

Then 202 studs, 4+ hours and 2 bleeding thumbs later, this is my finished product:


It was a heck of a time getting the studs to line up right, and I am super pleased with how it turned out.


I bought a huge bulk bag of pyramid black studs 1/2″ from Amazon, grabbed my seam ripper and looked at the whole blazer.

Then I lined up the studs to see whether it looked straight or wonky, and then pushed it down hard into the leather to make marks in the leather to see where to make the holes, then I used the seam ripper to make holes in it, and then pushed the stud through & bent the prongs down and into the leather underneath.

I did this 201 more times, following the outside lapel of the blazer to make it look straight, and lining up each and every stud to make sure it would fit and stick FLAT against the edges of the other studs.


I now plan on using the rest of my 800 studs on studding the rest of my serviceably boring items, like my Muubaa moto leather jacket which  I love, but needs a little something, taking inspiration this time from Laurence Basse.

I plan on studding the back like this, but am undecided on the sleeves going through the same treatment. Probably not. I may stud the cuffs instead.

Stay tuned!


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