11.16.2016

A Statement: Purse.

oonaballoona | a blog by marcy harriell | A Statement: Purse.

Welcome to my bag of crazy.

Wait, I'm getting ahead of myself. 

Firstly, thank you, thank you, thank you for your wonderful thoughts on my last post, and the beautiful stories you shared. To be honest, I felt like typing out my (true, and heartfelt) thanks to each comment would seem hollow for the repetition, so I'll say it here: I really and truly appreciate every word written. That kind of communication gives me hope in what is, undeniably, a turbulent time. 

Secondly, with everyone feeling unsure about the future, it feels a bit ridiculous parading photos of a giant technicolor fringed bag-- like belting out a showtune at a wake. But I'm determined to try my best to inject color and fun into this space. And maybe, hopefully, brighten a day or two with my insanity. We don't know what's ahead, but for now, I'm going to (as Rob put it) keep my worry levels low and my action levels high. 

A Statement: Purse.

So.

This bag.

A Statement: Purse.

This bag came into being at the end of October, when M&J Trimming asked if I might like to play with some goodies of my choosing. M&J has been a landmark in NY's garment district for, good lord, I want to say almost two decades? Early on in my sewing adventures, I ventured in a few times, but always left overwhelmed and empty handed. Now, they've gone through a makeover, and the store is bright, beautifully laid out, and happy. In early October, the staff was jovial, the owners gracious, the mood energetic-- made all the more so by the fact that The Khaljeesi was in town, guiding a group of sewists shopping for trim for Chanel jackets. 

(I *might* have harassed a few of them into showing me what was in their fabric bags. Oh, the bouclé...)

A Statement: Purse.

Back to this fabric bag! It's two giant curved panels of red boiled wool, with trim basically quilted to it in long gently curving swaths. The wool (which you can see in the belt and strap loops) matched the trim pretty well, and when I was done with the front panel, I considered leaving the back free of decoration. 

WHERE IS THE FUN IN THAT, I barked at myself. And away I went. 

A Statement: Purse.

The lining is some yellow mystery stuff from my stash, attached to a denim facing. Mystery Yellow was salvaged from this dress, which was only worn once. The skirt of it always felt thin-- like it was meant for lining. So the flimsy fabric finally found its purpose in life...

A Statement: Purse.

The blue rope trim, used for the strap, and the floral "belt" of the bag both hail from the vintage wall at M&J. Oh, I could have set up camp in front of the vintage wall of trim! There's about four yards for the strap, and a sensible yard of the floral motif for the belt, which is simply tacked down under the woven buckle.

I wish I could tell you how many yards of red ridiculousness went into this thing, but I lost track in my creative haze. I spied four large spools of it in the warehouse clearance section of the store, and I pounced. (My first thought was to make a bag covered in small fur pom poms. That bag would have cost about nine hundred dollars. This soft decor trim was the perfect compromise... not to mention, far easier to sew with). 

A Statement: Purse.

Total weight of bag: two and a half pounds. YEP. It's so heavy that putting items into it is something I have to seriously consider. It's like a small statement purse, meant only for keys and phone and lipstick, only it's half the size of my body. Completely irrational. I ADORE IT.

I'm very grateful to be able to partner with small stores and show my love by creating, when I can't necessarily show it with my wallet-- I do hope y'all don't mind it. And if you're inspired by my insanity, M&J would like to pass the love on and offer a 15% discount code for you. Just use "OONA15" through December 15 on the site (no affiliation).

And now, I've got some creating to do. I hope you do, too. Lemme know if you're making something completely irrational. I'm ALWAYS looking for good harebrained ideas...

this boho bag was made to make me smile, and hopefully make others smile too. i'll even take a laugh or two. thanks to m&j for providing the supplies!

49 comments:

  1. I love this bag! So much fun. I love the idea of "worry levels low and action levels high". After a first few days of shock and sorrow, I'm focusing on that as well.

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    1. it's a good mantra, that Rob has a way with words.

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  2. I love the bag, but I want to see your wrap/shawl!

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    1. ah! i should have included a shot! i'll try to get a pic in a post, but for now it's up at the mood sewing network :) http://www.moodsewingnetwork.com/alice-olivia-sweater-cape

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  3. This. Is. Awesome. It's like a walking haberdashery and I think we all need one!!

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  4. I've been waiting to see what you did with this bag of decorations. This is cute but mainly it is SO you!

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    1. i'll have to let you give it a whirl next time i see you. you're gonna LOL at the weight!

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  5. Ditto what Patricia said.
    Vancouver Barbara

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    1. :))) for now, it's here: http://www.moodsewingnetwork.com/alice-olivia-sweater-cape

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  6. Love this purse , the colours are great together , the blue strap and the belt is masterful. Can only imagine how heavy it is but is so lovely , inspiring me to sort through my stash of trimmings.

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  7. Definitely a statement bag. I love it

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  8. Hole-E cow! I'd parade it around, too, if I had that kind of creativity!

    So, I've a question. I've never been to the garment district and in fact only visited NYC once briefly many years ago. My granddaughter is studying fashion design marketing and I've promised her (me...ha ha ....see what I did there?) a quick trip to the district when we can coordinate it. Would you consider being our guide? I can return the favor of offering lodging for you if you'd like to visit Podunk, AL someday and fly into Atlanta. I'm only a bit over an hour away from Hartsfield International. I'd be honored to host you and even send you home with stash. Unsure yet when we can make this whirlwind visit, but it will be short, as flights/hotel as majorly expensive and I dang sure plan to purchase some textile souvenirs if I have to eat granola bars and drink water! LOL. I'm hoping a long weekend in Jan. Or Feb. when my 6 y/o is out of school and family can watch him. Not offended if you cannot or don't wish to. My offer still stands, though. We'd have a blast!

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    1. i'm always up for meeting sewists! but, my schedule is always up for throwing a wrench in things, especially last minute. let me know when you're in town and hopefully my datebook will play!

      (and, in my opinion, small towns are the best.)

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  9. This is one of the best things I have seen this week! FANTASTIC as usual, lady.

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  10. YAY. I approve the bag and the sentiments :)

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  11. fantastic..... love it, 'creative haze' perfectly describes it - so inspiring.

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  12. LOVING the bag! I'm currently making a gold wrap dress for the office Christmas party. Probably not very crazy/irrational on your level of sewing but it sure is to me... and I love it!

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  13. freaking a-mazing! i love it! i want it! you inspire me!

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    1. thank you :)). i'm wearing that wrap out!

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  15. Don't you feel a bit guilty for posting about your lovely bag! Deep thinking about post-election issues is taxing on the brain and on the heart. We all need our distractions and sharing a thing of beauty is one of them. It's a reminder that life will go on. So I thank you for showing us your lovely creation.

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    1. you're very welcome jill, and thank you. we're lucky to have this "hobby."

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  16. I LOVE going to M&J. It makes me so happy to see all of the fun things you can put on your stuff! I had no idea they had a website, so the discount is totally an added bonus. How fun!

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  17. Wow, that blue rope trim is amazing, as is that bag! I think we can all use a little picker-upper, so thanks for having such positive energy and sharing your awesome makes.

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    1. you're welcome, saki! a picker upper is what i intend to be :)

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  18. that's one gorgeous statement!

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    1. says the woman who is a walking gorgeous statement :))))

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  19. I just found your blog and I have to say this post made me an instant fan. Fringe is always in in my opinion. I just bought some of this suede fringe to use on a jacket but know you have me thinking in a new direction...

    http://www.moodfabrics.com/10-brown-suede-fringe-27280.html

    Any tips for using this in a clutch form?

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    1. well, i may be too late, but maybe around the outside seam of the clutch, you know, so it hangs down? like fringe on the hem of a dress? however you use it, it'll be fun!

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  20. This bag put a smile on my face this morning - thank you for sharing!!

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  21. Longtime reader, longtime lurker here.
    This bag really made me smile, and there is nothing in the world wrong with belting showtunes at a time like this. Just ask the good people starring in 'Hamilton'. :)

    In my home province (in Canada) there is a tireless, dedicated environmental activist who has been fighting for years. He often takes time to remind people working alongside him that we must remember to actually enjoy the world we're fighting for.
    I am going to do just that, and replicate a version of this bag, if you don't mind. And thanks so much for doing this blog. <3

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    1. i love that-- enjoy the world we're fighting for. beautiful. replicate away!!!! we need a small army of fun bags to put smiles on people's faces as they fight for the world.

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  22. This bag gave me a big "hurts my face" smile. Love fringe so much that I made my latest belly dance costume from it. And yes, I NEED a fringe clutch. Shimmy on!!!

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    1. thank you for telling me that, i love smiling till my face hurts!

      a belly dance costume from fringe?! AWESOME.

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  23. You made me smile as well. Which is an accomplishment because since November 9th my smile face has warped into a terse, tense, frozen thing that often veers into high-pitched freaked-out hyena laughing. Without warning. This is a, yeah, I WILL have another latte smile! I love it and I'm going to the M&J vintage wall (I hope) right after I catch up on your blog posts!

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    1. i'm with ya, and that made me so happy-- listen, have a latte today for me!

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  24. This is the best in-your-face unholy joy explosion/misery antidote bag ever and I love it to bits. And I have a pile of giant ridiculous orange curtain fringe I've never known what to do with - until now. Thank you! <3<3

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i thankya truly for taking the time to comment, i love a good conversation-- and hope you know my thanks are always implied, if not always written!