Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Bags and such...

Lots of sewing going on in my studio lately...
First, a fun little leather bag found here
Leather Shoulder Bag- The  Hobo

Right in time for the holidays, a couple of waxed canvas wine totes. Environmentally friendly, they will replace the traditional paper gift bag, to be used again and again. They are available here.
Waxed Canvas Wine Tote

Lastly, a bunch of practical zippered cases, large enough to hold an iPad, or some bike tools, sewing needs, or to use as a clutch for an evening out on the town.

READY TO SHIP Waxed Canvas Pouch

Happy November!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

A Bag and a Sierra Bra

I know, this is a strange title, but in the last couple of days, I have made a leather bag and a lace bra...
First, the bag. Beautiful black leather and brown trim... It is available here.

Next, the bra...
I used a free (FREE) pattern from Madalynne found here.
The Sierra  Bra is really easy to make and the design is quite clever. I decided to make two straps instead of a halter strap. I tried the halter strap but, unless you are wearing a halter top, it is going to show. So I made two straps and they feel great.
I used  white galloon lace  and notions from ArteCraft on Etsy. The bralette is very easy to make and
super-comfortable to wear.
I am ordering more galloon lace to make more Sierras in black, pink, gray, and lavender...
To make your own Sierra, go to Madalynne's website and follow the sew-alongs.
Thanks Madalynne :)

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Merlot Red Waxed Canvas Tote

Here is the newest tote from the shop , a zippered waxed canvas tote in lovely Merlot red.Merlot Red Zippered Waxed Canvas Tote with Leather Handles- Diaper Bag- Weekender

Many customers have asked for a zippered tote, so here it is. The handles are longer to allow for shoulder wear, and there is no crossbody strap. The wine color is perfect for Fall and Winter. 
I am currently working on a black leather drawstring bag and a minimalist men's wallet. 
More on that later.

Monday, September 21, 2015

New bags in the shop

Hello friends,
It is hard to believe that summer is almost over.
I have been sewing a lot, eventhough school started for me almost five weeks ago.
There are a couple of new items in the shop.
First a waxed canvas and leather tote available here :

Next is a fun but elegant geometric waxed canvas and leather tote.

                              Waxed Canvas And Leather Geometric Tote

Last but not least, a waxed canvas iPad messenger
                         Waxed Canvas iPad Messenger - for Men and Women
 All are available in my Etsy shop.

Happy Fall!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

New in the Shop

Just in time for Back to School, I added a few items to the shop.

First, this gorgeous waxed canvas lunch tote in deep red. You can find it here.
                                      NEW! Limited Edition RED Waxed Canvas and Leather Lunch Tote Waxed Canvas Lunch Bag

Next, I made some leather clutches in different colors.
Leather Clutch in Dark Brown

Brown Suede Clutch

                                      Leather Clutch in Black
                                  Leather Clutch in Brown-

You can find them hereherehere, and here.
Last but not least, a knot bag made of super soft chocolate brown leather. 
                              NEW! The Knot Bag-Minimalist Leather Tote in Chocolate

Are you ready for Fall?

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Father's Day Coupon on Zakken

To celebrate Father's Day, I am offering a 10% coupon valid on everything in the shop, including sale  and made to order items. Enter code FORDAD10 at checkout. Coupon valid until June 21st.
Below is a sample of available items. To see them all, visit Zakken on Etsy.

Happy shopping!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

A trio of summer bags

Snow showers, thunderstorms, pelting rain... Summer is on its way! Yesssss!!!
To celebrate, I made three new totes for the shop.
The design is simple, rectangular, no gusset, French seams, no lining. The fun part was the Shibori dyeing process. I just love to unwrap each bag to see the individual design.

Here they are, just in time for Mother's Day:

The three of them in the woods (right before the storm, I might add)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Waxed Denim Tote

I found this amazing Cone Mills (made in the USA) selvedge denim and decided it would be perfect for a tote.

The  12oz dark denim and burgundy leather work together beautifully. 
This tote is available here.

Waxed denim is hard to find, so I decided to wax my own. The result is a wonderfully pliable fabric, water resistant, slightly darker than the original and feeling thicker than the non-waxed denim.
The waxed version is available here.

Check it out in the shop.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Shibori Dyed Totes

I had so much fun making these... I love the way they turned out. Find them at Zakken.

From the top: Ocean, Soleil, Denim, Citron, Fuschia

The totes are individually hand dyed and hand made. Due to the dyeing process, the designs are all different. My favorite color is Ocean closely followed by Soleil, pictured above.
What is your favorite color?

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

New in the Shop

I have been having fun with leather lately. Little leather pouches with contrasting zippers and mini tassels have been popping up in my shop, just in time for Mother's day.
I always carry a mini leather pouch when I travel. They are super-useful to stash phone, passport, and electronics cables, as well as other goodies like mints or lip balm. No more searching around the bottom of your bag!

I have been carrying a handmade leather purse for almost three years now. I made it originally to carry my iPad on the airplane, but it quickly became my go-to bag. After receiving many compliments on it, I decided to reproduce it for the shop, only a bit larger. The closures and the strap are made from a different weight leather in a contrasting color that really compliments the brown leather. The body is made of oiled leather, which is really smooth and wonderful to the touch.  

What do you think?
Have a beautiful rest of the week.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Bags and more bags...

Last week being Spring Break, I had more time to sew - yay!
I made a couple of dresses based on the Nettie bodysuit as well as a sweatshirt, and a striped top (to be blogged later as my camera's battery just blanked out.)

A couple of new bags came out of the studio as well:
         - a really (REALLY) big travel bag,  the Voyager, made with brown wasxed canvas and burgundy leather
          - a large electric blue leather clutch, super soft lined in vintage kimono silk, and
          - my favorite, a square bottom Zen Bag, based on my original Zen Bag, only larger, and made with linen and scrumptious leather. I love the mix of soft leather and linen, simple but elegant...
Here are some pictures of the bags:
The Voyager

The Leather Clutch

The Square Zen Bag

See you soon with - hopefully- some pictures of my newest tops and dresses.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Waxed Canvas Shoppers

A new bag design I have been thinking about for a while, the Waxed Canvas Shopper, is finally here. It comes in three colors, graymushroom brown with a subtle grid design, and caramel brown.
The Waxed Canvas Shopper will make a great book tote, beach bag, or - of course- a fabulous shopping bag.
All the great pictures were taken by Jonathan, home on a short leave.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

Much of my time during my holiday break was spent in the studio, first cleaning and reorganizing, then sewing...yay!
My main projects were a New Year's Eve Nettie dress for Julie- to be blogged as soon as I have pictures-, a couple of t-shirts, and the transformation of two sweaters I never wear into two cardis I certainly will!

There are many tutorials on repurposing sweaters into cardis with plenty of good advice.
I used my serger to finish the edges in the front and  I actually liked the results - the "lettuce leaf" edging- so I left them alone. The sleeves were super long, so I cut off the excess and the edges received the same serging treatment. I kept the ribbing just in case I get tired of the wavy edges and I want to finish them, which, ahem, I might do right after I finish this post.
The next project involved a black sweater that my mother knitted for me years ago... The yarn she used has a wonderful fluffy body. After washing and drying the sweater, you are suppposed to brush it for a soft fur effect. Alas, it is also a bit itchy and the sleeves were way too long. I cut them and reused the ribbing to finish them.
I used a 1" ribbon trim to finish the front edges, turned it under and topstiched for a nice, clean finish.

In addition, I finally finished my Gerard coat from "Republique du Chiffon". YAY! This is my second version of the Gerard. My first version is really a wearable muslin- very wearable indeed- because I had bought this wonderful, amazing, and quite expensive Donna Karan cashmere blend at Moods, but oh so worth it, and I wanted to test the pattern before I cut into my special fabric.
The pattern was a bit challenging for me- I consider myself an advanced beginner :)- but extremely well put together. Geraldine does not hold your hand during the process- the expectation is that you know how to sew- so you may want to read up on coat making techniques before you start- and a muslin is always a good idea. The language was not a problem (ha ha), and for the sewing techniques, I went to one of my favorite sewing blogs  and I followed Kelly's great advice  (including using silk charmeuse for the lining). Another must is Jen's tutorial on lining a jacket.

 Silk lining
 The reason it took me so long to finish the coat was that I could not find buttons I liked. I finally found them in a small "mercerie" in France during my November trip.
This coat is super warm and comfortable. It looks great with jeans or leggings, or a dress. A scarf is a must- at least for me this time of year- because of the opening in front.
I have a few (a FEW) sewing projects in mind for the near future, among others: the Chloe coat from La Maison Victor, Named's Magena Jumper, and the Chardon skirt by Deer and Doe.

What is on your sewing table for 2015?