Ever since I was a little girl I’ve always had a thing for bags, my collection in adult life grew and grew until one day I decide to have a big sort through and cherry pick my favourites, I was very strict with myself. I have two sentimental vintage leather ones that belonged to my wonderfully lovely granny Eula, I will cherish these for life, I use them now and then, but I still didn’t have THE bag, the bag to end all bags. I knew what it was in my mind, a large tan leather tote, something that would serve me well now with all the detritus I seem to have to carry for the girls but that would also see me through the years to come, something that will age with me, gain character, perhaps one day I will pass it on to my own Granddaughter, a piece of future retro style…
So I did my usual, sell the things I have that don’t fill me with joy to raise some funds, trawl the internet, pin, pin…but nothing quite came close to what was in my mind. A few pretties caught my eye, but they didn’t feel special enough and then it occurred to me, why was I looking at ready made, mass produced bags that were made thousands of miles away, surely I could have something made locally?
Last year I bought a beautiful vintage French satchel for Nancy on Etsy and had white leather straps attached by a local Leather Worker… The girls love this bag, one of Eula’s favourite games is to fill it up to bursting and pretend she’s off somewhere very important.
And so I contacted Kitty Jameson to ask if it was something she could help me with and luckily for me it was. I’m so happy to have used a local craftswoman, to give my money to someone I can see, talk to, I feel it’s everyone’s duty to support local small businesses whenever we can and the reward is something that has more meaning, feels more personal and is far better value for money.
I’ve had so many compliments so I thought I would share some more pictures of my ‘Alice bag’, which Kitty has named after me…
Above is a Pinterest image I found that was similar to what I wanted, so Kitty and I worked from here as a starting point but made some changes as, quite rightly, Kitty didn’t want to just reproduce someone else’s work. Next I visited the workshop to choose which hide I wanted to use. Kitty measured me so the shoulder straps would be just right, we decided on dimensions, I knew I wanted quite a big bag, if you’re going to do something you might as well really go for it! And then I left it in a very capable Artisan’s hands to bring our ideas and discussions to life and that’s exactly what happened…..
I just love the simplicity of the style, big, bold, beautiful and timeless. I know I won’t tire of this wonderful creation, it answers all my needs.
There’s no getting away from the fact it is big, there was a tiny bit of me that wondered had I gone TOO big? But then I thought do you know what? I’m not a small person, I’m tall, I have a big personality and now I have a big bag to go with it.
The leather is so supple and floppy and lovely that it moulds to your body, bends and flexes with your movement. It’s comfortable to wear, happy to be filled to the brim with colouring books, soft toys, snacks and nappies or in my stolen moments of solitude my laptop, writing pad and naughty unplanned purchases!
Kitty listened to all my needs, a very simple style, a place for my phone and a tie for my keys – I have an awful habit of locking my keys in the van, something I’ve done at least 4 times, so I need them tethered to me in some way at all times!
And very importantly it looks great hanging on the Muuto dot wall hooks in the kitchen!
Kitty can usually be found making fantastic quality leather items mostly for the animal world, dog collars, Equestrian equipment to name but a few, along with a small sprinkling of more unusual creations for a fantasy world! All beautifully handcrafted to a very high level and so I felt very comfortable putting this request into her skilled hands, despite it being a little different to her norm and I’m so happy I did.
So there we have it, I hope you’ve all had a wonderful weekend? Eula and I have been visiting my brother in Bristol and had a fab time doing a bit of city life. Ikea was visited, much food and wine was consumed, shop windows were browsed, it was lovely.
I fell in love with this beautiful Frida Kahlo print and NEED it very much. The shop was closed so I will either buy online or get my brother to pop into Shuffle Showroom before he’s next down..
Oh and this. Hideous, hideous vision of a crazy future. I don’t want to do politics here, but NOOOOO!