Friday, July 9, 2010

Are the words "handmade" and "sophisticated" an oxymoron?

Poor neglected blog!
I'll have to make a point of stopping in more often.

Tonight I have been searching for a purse pattern so I can make a friend a bag for her birthday.
The odd fact here is that when you go to a department store and buy a bag, it's usually leather, and it's usually plain black or plain brown.
Why then, when bags are sewn from a pattern, are they so often wild prints with that not-in-a-good-way handmade look?

I don't want a cutesie bag (though, to be honest, I am using a fabric with beagles all over it).
I don't want soft sides, but I want reinforced details as found on the leather bags I usually carry.
I don't want quilt blocks on my tote, or faux fur, or a teeny tiny paper sack of a bag.

There are a lot of indie designers out there with great patterns, but they're sometimes hard to find.
Purse Patterns (dot com) has 1100 ideas to browse through.

I think my best options for a sophisticated take on handmade might be The Cosmo Bag

or the Classic Messenger Bag

Hmmm....maybe a yoga bag would make a fun gift!

Though Carol's Executive Tote is seemingly more of a simplistic style that I'm trying to get away from, there is something about this design that I find quite pleasing, and I think it would work really well with the fabric I have chosen

Another option is to sacrifice a favorite bag and make a pattern from it, which I may do as well.
I will post my results when I finish the bag.



Blogger Bruce said...

Dear Barb:

One of my favorite bags is the Classic, by Carol's Carryalls. I've made quite a few of these with brocade and tapestry fabrics, and recently with quilting details.


July 16, 2010 at 5:44 AM  
Blogger woof nanny said...

Thank you--I'll give that a try!

July 16, 2010 at 8:59 AM  
Anonymous Purse Pixie said...

Love that Cosmo bag! If you make it will you let us know how it turns out?

July 16, 2010 at 12:16 PM  
Blogger woof nanny said...

I think I'm going to try the Cosmo bag first. I will definitely post my results!

July 16, 2010 at 5:39 PM  
Anonymous pink owls said...

Love the fabric you are using. Very original :)

July 17, 2010 at 3:17 PM  
Blogger Stefanie said...

I love recycled bags because they are so original and make me feel good about the environment. I love the hemp bag I'm using and used to use one made of recycled Billboards. I have lots of information on purchasing recycled bags if you are interested.

September 28, 2010 at 3:49 PM  
Anonymous Diane said...

I agree! Lately I've been making bags recycled from wool skirts and making the handles and bottoms from leather also recycled from coats, jackets and the occasional belt.

Even my quilted patchwork bags look more sophisticated with the leather trim.

February 6, 2011 at 11:45 AM  

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