I found these amazing Italian military sacks in Texas last October. They were very dirty but had the most amazing character & stenciling on each one. I only found 3 & ended up keeping one for myself because I thought, “this is one of the coolest fabrics I’m bound to ever find.” The bottoms were pretty wrecked so I took the seams apart & patched on leather bottoms with additional pockets. The old worn in belts were perfect to keep the flaps down & the shoulder straps were well worn horse bridles. This combination was just perfect together & gave it a very vintage feel. They definitely appear to be from the WWII era & if I’m extra lucky, maybe I’ll trip over more someday.
Well, I’m also assuming it is waterproof since this bag is made out of a recycled fireman’s protective lining. The rubbery exterior almost looks like a great broken in leather. It was lined in a homespun black & white plaid fabric which popped when you opened it. This size is just big enough for toting around a 13″ laptop. The straps are horse bridles & the big loud cross on the front is suede. This just happened to be the first bag that happily walked out the door at the Holiday market- Enjoy Kate!
I’m having fun putting together a new line of bracelets for the Firefly Holiday market. These are made from horse bridles & have been strung with brass beads & sparkly chrystals. A little bling with old leather is such a nice contrast. Each bracelet is a different combination of leather & beads so when they’re all together it’s hard to pick a favorite.
This was the first time I took my linen bag silhouette & translated it into leather. This quality of leather was so thick but soft & spongy so had some nice form after being sewn without being too stiff. The strap & closures are recycled horse reins. I especially like how this one had a big knot at the end to keep it from slipping through the brass D-ring. Every bag needs a little bling of course so a key ring was added with some vintage fishing lures to the strap. I only made 2 of these in september & wish I had made a bunch more as the style was one of my favorites. Good thing I’m making a bunch more for fall!
I found this very sturdy blue duffle bag & managed to make 3 unique , one-of-a-kind bags from it. Because of the limited amount of material & the placement of the stenciled letters, I thought 1 tote & 2 fold-over clutches were in order. Each bag has it’s own look, from the horse bridle handles to the leather bottoms. It’s finds like this that keep me digging!
I found these beautiful suede pants in amazing condition & had them sitting in my office for a quite a while before I made them into anything. When I finally pulled them out, I paired them with a really great old & broken in bridle, lined the bag in linen & made it so it could be worn comfortably across the body. The final touch was a red & white vintage fishing lure dangling off the side. This bag found a very good home, very quickly at the weekend market.
When I found this old canvas jeep cover, I couldn’t yet imagine what it would turn into. The more I paired it with the bright warm colors like yellow, orange & sometimes, clean, white stripes the more versatile it became. The options & combinations were limitless. All colors seem to compliment this neutral tan fabric. I made shortish handles using leather bridle reigns, popped the inside in bright contrast canvas colors & the patch pocket on the front is perfect for holding plane tickets. When I came up with this long rectangular shape I was picturing it used to hold a computer & essentials while running through an airport. It feels & is a sturdy bag that is fully machine washable when the straps are removed. (*if your trying to guess what those bright straps are that hold the body together, you’ve guessed correctly if you said , Martial arts belts!)
A friend came to me & requested a linen bag. She had a very specific use for it & we wanted to create a tote that could go all around town, hold her things (like a computer) plus extra kid stuff. Her water bottle was floating around the bottom of her current bag so I suggested we add an extra outside pocket to hold her drink. Simplicity was the key, she is a person who has such a beautiful natural yet subtle style. The tote material is an antique, heavy herringbone linen. The handle is a knotted horse bridle that can be removed for washing & the lining is a nice neutral striped linen fabric.
The hand stitched initial was a last minute addition just for her.
This green leather bag started out very simple but little by little, all the small interesting details were added. The bag construction is not complicated but by adding the horse bridle straps in an unusual way & attaching the small horse hair to the tip plus the old brass “34″ charm on the zipper pull it became a much more interesting piece. When people were checking it out I always would mention the lining because it’s a hidden surprise. Just a sweet cotton, brown & white gingham. This bag found a very good home!
I spent a great portion of the past 2 weeks making tote bags made out of antique linen & using leather horse bridles as straps. Each bag was a unique piece that combined different shell fabrics, linings, some had leather bottoms, some not. The straps were the best part as they gave each bag it’s own identity. I started falling in love with the way they all just hung on my office wall together as an instillation. It wasn’t easy for me to sell them as I saw something in each one that I would want to keep & use. In the end, I picked one & packed up the rest. Just before I went to the market I impulsively pulled out 1 more…… I couldn’t help it. I wish I had taken a picture of them all hanging at the Fair as it was a very temporary vision. To my delight & great surprise, they all sold within the first 2 hours of the first night.
I used up all my fabric & all my bridles….. Back to the hunt to find some more ! This is the problem that I tend to run into when I find antique fabrics & hard to find trims. These bags are truly one of a kind.