Monday, March 9, 2009

My favorite quote from the sewing expo....

"Fabric is born fabric. It won't be the end of the world if it dies fabric." Mary Ray

Sunday, March 1, 2009

An aside

There are certain things which bring moments to memory. The smell of bacon, the sound of a train whistle, or the first robin all have specific sensory triggers in my life. One of the most profound and cherished sensory memories in my life came from a radio voice that said.....

"Stand by for NEWS!"
"And now, page 2"

Paul Harvey was my father's favorite. We listened to his broadcast daily, stopping whatever conversation was taking place to hear what Mr. Harvey had to say. This man afforded us a window into the world through his plain, unadorned broadcast and his masterful use of the vocal pause. I can measure my life in Paul Harvey broadcasts. As a youth, I listened because he was there. As I grew older, I listened because I found value in his honest portrayal of American thought.

I own two of his books, guarding them from borrowers (I loaned out an earlier copy of one, and it was not returned....).

No, you may not have agreed with his conservative bent. And you may have found his voice slightly shrill. Or you may have found his homespun humor and coined phrases trite and unsophisticated. But you simply cannot ignore the influence this simple, generous gentleman had on several generations of Americans. There will be no other to take his place.

RIP Mr. Harvey. And thank you for bringing us the rest of all the stories.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Sigh....still no rings

I have searched high and low for a set of rings for this handle. No luck anywhere. I did find a set of oversized d-rings, and brought them home to try. Well, ds #1, with his strong arms, offered to help me attach them to the handle. We now have one d-ring stuck in the inside of the handle.

I think, once we get this thing out, that I'm going to go with the creative option. The handle has a detail that looks like wrapped cord. I'm going to find some similar cord, and make a wrapped something-or-other and see how that looks. There is too much time and anticipation invested in this purse to give up now!

And for your Friday weather update, we are now enjoying a balmy 51 degrees. This is quite a change from yesterday's high of 21! Why, it's almost spring-like:) Seriously, I'm LONGING for spring, and tulips, and lots of sunshine. I'm a Southern girl all the way to my toe-tips, and I do love warm weather!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Wouldn't you know it?

The bag is finished.....except.....
There is a reason things are put on clearance, even with online purveyors. The horn handle I had purchased (on sale) and saved for the right moment has no rings with which to attach it to the purse. I have searched locally, in vain, for the proper connections.

Look around online for something that will work.
Try the hardware store.
Look for a thrift store purse with rings that might be used.
Come up with something creative.

Stay tuned. I haven't made up my mind as to which option will be used.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Bag in progress

About five years ago, when Hot Patterns first introduced themselves, they made available a free bag pattern. The Nairobi bag pattern was inspired by a classic YSL bag, the Mombassa, and several who sew have made variations of this gorgeous piece.

My first version was made shortly after the pattern was released. I was inspired to adapt the beaded and embroidered version of the Mobassa for my own use; I was even able to purchase a comparable horn handle. That bag has received a lot of attention. I love, love, love carrying it, as the shape and size are perfect for me, and the horn handle sits perfectly on my shoulder.

But five years is a long life for any bag, even a custom-made version. So it was time to make a new version of the bag. I have tons of black bags in my collection, and I need something that can work with the browns and eggplants in my closet. There was already another horn handle in my stash, this one in ivory with a wrapped cord detail.

Yesterday, at a local thrift shop, I found exactly the right mix of materials. I found a pair of khaki green leather jeans and a suede skirt in the same exact color! These came home to be cannibalized for my new bag.

Here are the carcasses:

The only possibly usable piece of leather remaining is the patch pockets from the jeans. I used every square inch, even cutting off the belt loops to use along the edge of the purse.

Here is the purse in progress:

And the lining, in progress as well:

I made a couple of changes to the pattern, as you can see. A strip of leather is stitched to the top of the lining to act as a facing. This will also provide some strength for the closure I'm planning, a magnetic snap to be positioned in the point of the facing. I'm also planning a key hook, which I'll stitch to the inside of the side of the purse.

And wouldn't you know it? I have findings in gold and in bronze, but no silver. The opening in the horn handl is I need to get a magnetic snap, large O-rings from the hobby store, and some punched fleece or batting for the interior of the purse. Ah, to the store I go:)

Tuesday, December 30, 2008