Archives for November 2011
This is bag #2 from the City Revival jacket. It is a smaller one, 9″ x 9″ x 3″. It is made from one side and a sleeve, so there is enough leather left (and a second zip pocket) for a second bag. But it will probably be different, because I have trouble making two things alike. I have yet to make a pattern for any of these bags. I try to record after they are made but my notes are scratches at best.
Below are the new Birdbrain pouches. Each is lined with a different batik fabric. They will be available at the upcoming shows. If you live in the area and are interested in coming, leave me a comment and I’ll give you the details.
I had three purple jackets in my bin waiting to be transformed. These are batwing style with lots of material in the sleeves. This is the first. I wanted to incorporate the pockets and the great geometric quality of the stitching and make a soft slouchy bag, big enough for all you carry in a day. I think leather is amazing–after a season or two of wear a couple of decades ago, this leather is beautifully transformed without a complaint!
I should say that I call this bag Carissa 2 because the first purple bag I made has accompanied her everywhere for the past 6 months. She is my greatest fan and advertisement. Her new bag is in the works (don’t tell her!) and it is apple green!! I hope it will be ready for her birthday.
Inside there is a zipper pocket and an open pocket on the one side and a turquoise suede open pocket on the other. The lining is a beautiful striped fabric which adds strength and structure to the bag. It came from Montreal’s fabric district. I am looking forward to getting back there next month!
Years ago I read The Mountain and The Valley by Ernest Buckler. One of the images that has stayed with me is the one of the grandmother making rugs from carefully saved family clothing. As she hooks each piece into the rug, her mind is inundated by the image of the child or adult wearing it and the emotions connected to the scene.
I’ve been making scarves lately from the bag of cashmere sweaters I have been saving. In my experience, cashmere is not often found in thrift shops–wearers find other uses for this beautiful, warm fibre when it is no longer presentable, either lining the cat’s bed with it or wearing it to bed themselves. So my cashmere fragments are from my own cast-offs and those of generous friends. As I pieced the scarf together this morning, the visceral images brought back by this bag of coloured wool were breathtaking. There was Anne in her beautiful striped pullover and Janet in her orange cardigan. J.A. Wainright, in an essay on Buckler’s Nova Scotia novel, summed up the grandmother’s activity:
When she is alone in this room and “without speech,” Martha is happy because “her tasks are like a kind of conversation” (p. 24); she does not need to talk to others in order to “come alive,” and her mind obviously has its own “shining population”.
So here is to all rug hookers and ‘repurposers’ of woollen garments. Enjoy your conversation with that shining population.
This is the bag made from the jacket I talked about here . I am actually going to make 2 bags from that one small jacket, so this is the first. The second will use those crazy pockets, not quite sure how yet. I wanted this bag to be simple and uncluttered so I put leather loops for the attachment rather than rivets. This has the added benefit of easily allowing you to change the strap length. The lining is a lovely stiff cotton from the market in Limoux–and what could be better with the coming winter than having the flowers of summer in your bag? As you can see there is a double inside pocket on one side and a suede slip pocket for phone and keys on the other. It is 13″ wide, 11.5″ tall and the strap is 50″ long.
More kodachrome pouches. I love combining the colours and textures. They are a wonderful relief from the more challenging work of creating a bag out of a jacket. I posted a jacket a few days ago–it is well on its way to being a bag, but recycling leather and zipper (without end tips) poses some problem-solving situations. Hope you will see the finished product soon. BTW thank you for all your wonderful comments about the first kodachrome pouch. It is always so nice to be reminded that you are not alone in the ether.