A little about my background, making my first leather bag by hand out of my own leather coat which had been worn all through my late teens, 20’s and indeed early 30’s, it was second hand before coming into my hands so was already vintage, my wearing it for another 15-20 years made it all the more loved, but eventually it became pretty threadbare in the lining and the pockets were very worn, no being able to part part with it and decided on making it into something useful, a cross body is what it became and I was able to continue to love my coat but as a bag.
I don’t know about you but I love leather coats and the character each and every one has, all my jackets are sourced from charity shops and Ebay but mostly people give me their coats and jackets to repurpose into their own choice of bag/holdall. Not really following fashion trends but instead letting the details from the jacket guide my design.
My first bag was made both by hand and a struggle with my old domestic sewing machine, what a challenge with a normal foot on my machine, the leather was stuck to the plate and the thread kept breaking, it turned out a long job. Looking back on that first creation with both fondness but also cringe at just how amateur the finished bag looked !! Things are very different now with my industrial machine built for the job (my third child).
Nothing is more satisfying for me when I wake up in the morning and someone hands to me their beloved husbands leather coat and favourite shirt and asks me to transform it all into a big useable handbag for them to cherish for the rest of time. Even more exciting is watching their face when its handed over to them finished.
This past year has been the most exciting as I set out to find beautiful galleries and stockists to sell my up-cycled products. Recycling more materials than ever and currently working on a range of mens accessories from British Airways plane seats along with the life jackets and seat belts. Keep checking back here and my Facebook page to see new products.
I am humbled by the trust my clients have in me not to mess up their jacket and I must whole heartily admit that years back I did panic at times, it has always worked out fine in the end, I love the challenge of each and every project. I used to question myself throughout the whole process,”what if they don’t like it? what if they thought it would be smaller/bigger? what if they change their mind half way through me cutting off the arms of the jacket? As the years have passed and a few hundred bags later I now have full confidence and more excitement than ever about my business. I am blessed each and every day to be doing the work I am completely passionate about.
So would you like to use your old jacket or coat and have me make it into something you can treasure for ever? Maybe you have something tucked away for a rainy day (or a new fashion era) maybe for some of you a big bat-winged embarrassing 80’s jacket with the notion ..”I’ll save that till it comes back in fashion” It probably will no doubt but listen here, I would love to get my hands on your beloved jacket and transform it into a beautiful bag/holdall/baby bag/clutch/hobo/you name it, I will make it!