Henna on Handbags and Whiskers on Kittens

D'Onofrio The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Handbag Cat

D’Onofrio!

Shiny brass hardware and warm woolen mittens, veg tanned leather laced up with string, these are a few of our favorite things.


 

Trend setting handbag with henna The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Christmas Open House Handbag Open House Gifts for Wives

Meet D’Onofrio– Kristy’s cat who, just like his owner, seems to enjoy having his photo taken. D’Onofrio is one of Kristy’s favorite things, or should I say beings? We needed a photo of whiskers and he just happened to have them! Speaking of favorite things, here’s a big secret- Kristy wants The Kristy Bag by CG wristlet to become one of Oprah’s favorite things. (Wait until Kristy sees that I wrote that. Now it’s out to the universe!)

As many of you know, Kristy Lash is an artist. She is an amazingly talented woman. When Dave and I first met her at an art show held at the Carriage House Artist Studio last year, we were taken by surprise. Her drawing skills are remarkable. She enjoys using the human body in her artwork. She also is very skilled at mehndi, which is the art of applying henna to parts of the body like hands, arms and feet.

Henna or No at Crabtree Gardens Mehndi Temporary henna tattoos Drums PA Henna parties bachelorette parties weddingHenna or No at Crabtree Gardens Mehndi Temporary henna tattoos Drums PA Henna parties bachelorette parties wedding1

When Kristy mentioned this to me I asked her if she would be interested in doing henna applications here at Crabtree Gardens and she jumped at the opportunity. She definitely takes chances, that’s what so great about Kristy. She’s not afraid to try things. Just look at how we dress her as the Handbag Hottie and she’s such a sport about it.

Kristy and I came up with a unique name for her business. We called it Henna or No? (check it out on Facebook). The use of the phrase “henna or no” is a local colloquialism which means -Isn’t it so? It worked for the name of the business because henna tattoos are temporary and only last for a few days. So clients can try out a temporary tattoo in henna before they choose to have a permanent one done elsewhere, or they can just do a henna tattoo for the fun of it. Does that make sense? We thought the business name worked.

The Kristy Bag by CG is innovative and we love unique. Since Kristy is so good at drawing and creating henna designs, we discussed using her artistic talents on some of the handbags. She did a prototype of one of her henna designs on a bagette and it turned out fantastic! She doesn’t actually use henna on leather, she uses black ink, but the effect is the same and the ink is permanent.

The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Henna on Handbags Trend setting handbag designer artist Kristy Lash

Kristy Lash applied a henna-like floral pattern with brown paint onto this dried gourd grown at Crabtree Gardens. The same effect can be applied to The Kristy Bag by CG handbags. A prototype of her henna art on this bagette rests against the Cheri Crossbody.

We thought it would be a great idea to offer one as a giveaway at our Christmas Open House on Sunday, November 30, 2014 from 1-4 PM here at the Carriage House at Crabtree Gardens. When we posted a photo on our Facebook page, we received great comments and feedback. That confirmed the question of whether or not to use the henna designs on some of our handbags.

Trendsetting handbag The Kristy Bag by CG Henna design on Bagette American made leather handbags boutique handbag business

The great news is that in 2015, we will be offering an option to have custom henna designs drawn on certain panels of the handbags. Can you imagine the two lower panels on the front of the satchel covered in custom henna-like art? We can!

The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Henna on Handbags Trend setting handbags

For photo purposes the words Henna Here were added to this photo.  Kristy Lash can draw henna-like artwork to any panels of leather on the Angela satchel or any of the handbag in our current line, creating a trend setting handbag that’s one-of-a-kind!

What about the two front side panels on the tote?  Kristy can just do one panel for accent or a part of the back side of the bag. The possibilities are endless! She will customize it to your preference.

Trend setting handbag line The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Henna designs on Handbags Crabtree Gardens

Original henna-like drawings can be applied to panels on our handbags. For photo purposes, a series of x and o were added to both side panels to show where henna-like floral or geometric patterns could be added to make our trend setting tote look even more trendy!

Here’s another great henna look. We also will be offering a henna art shoulder strap option on our Cheri Crossbody!!!! The standard crossbody shoulder strap comes with our 100-inch-long, adjustable shoulder-strap that is stitch-in-nine double stitched along the length of the strap. We will be offering a strap with Kristy’s original henna-like artwork as an additional option. You can choose the theme of the henna to be seasonal, such as snowflakes, spring-like florals or just a general design as shown on the bagette. This is truly a custom touch to creating a gorgeous handbag. You can get a different look for your handbag investment just by changing the shoulder strap seasonally.

Trend setting handbag The Kristy Bag by CG Crossbody strap with henna snowflakes Kristy Lash artist  American made leather handbags boutique handbag business
Our Handbag Hottie struck a pose for this post dressed in her warm woolen mittens holding that beautiful giveaway henna bagette.  Henna is one of our very favorite things and we are beyond excited to be able to offer this feature as an additional cost option for customizing your handbag. Hand applied henna artwork is just another trend setting detail that The Kristy Bag by CG offers that truly sets our bags apart from the rest. One thing for sure, you won’t have the same bag as anyone else in the whole world!

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash holds bagette with henna design Trendsetting handbag The Kristy Bag by CG  American made leather handbags boutique handbag business

The Kristy Bag by CG Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash holds a special bagette in her warm woolen mittens. This bagette key chain/money case has Kristy’s original henna-like artwork applied to it.

And one more for whiskers-

The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Henna on Handbags Ned the cat

It’s Black Friday and Ned the black kitty says” Henna on handbags works for me”!

 

An Art to Handbag Design

“Every act of creation is first an act of destruction”- Pablo Picasso


Kristy Lash trend setting handbag stunning crossbody the kristy bag by CG crabtree gardens handbag line

The most recent addition to The Kristy Bag by CG handbag line is this stunning Cheri Crossbody. Appropriate in any season!

 

 

The snow from the big storm heading up the the East coast has arrived. This weather will probably mess up plans for travelers who are taking to the interstates heading home to share precious time with their extended families. Looking at a computer model map showing the layered swaths of forecasted snow, ice and rain totals reminded me of the panels of leather that are used to build our bags.

Let’s talk about panelized leather for a bit. It’s another design detail that makes our handbag trend setting. Most handbags on the market are cut in a minimal amount of pieces. Full fronts and full backs. Nice and practical if that’s what you’re going for. A very common look for handbags. Definitely cheaper on labor because there’s less. Less cutting, less handling, less sewing, you get it. The bags themselves can be kind of mediocre. Thank goodness for all the fancy hardware that pulls your eyes away from the actual bag. Who wants mediocrity? As Seth Godin might ask “Shouldn’t you want remarkable?”

The Kristy Bag by CG strives for remarkable. We aim for avant-garde. We try things that are different. We take the full leather hide and chop it into pieces. Instead of using large pieces of the leather, we cut it into smaller pieces and stitch it together to form larger, more rigid panels that are accentuated by our hand-stitching. We break it down to build it up. We create! It’s more cutting, more punching, more handling and a lot more stitching. What does all of this do for you? It gives you more handbag-look for your buck. (Speaking of buck, did you see the one about Kristy….)

Artist Kristy Lash Trend setting handbag panelized leather cubist style handbagh The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Picasso

Some parts of this Angela satchel are laid out and ready to be hand stitched together forming the main body of the bag.

Take for instance, Kristy’s original handbag design that started it all-the “Kristy” tote. The body of this large tote measures thirteen inches tall (not including the north-south handle) and it’s four and a quarter inches wide. Kristy could have easily designed the main body leather panels into two front panels and two side panels. Instead, she chose to combine eight separate upright vertical panels cut into smaller widths. That doesn’t include the smaller pocket panels and decorative parts on near the bottom. Dave developed the pattern working in right angles so that her concept could be actualized. There’s many panels on that bag, and the bag does not falter.

Artist Kristy Lash Trend setting handbag panelized leather cubist style handbagh The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Panelized leather American made handbag

Many separate panels of full grain veg tanned American leather will be hand-stitched together to create the trend setting Kristy tote bag designed by new handbag designer Kristy Lash.

 

The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash trend setting handbag handbag designer final four stitches

Kristy Lash hand sews the final four stitches on the body of her trend setting “Kristy” handbag. The panelized leather parts wrap over the top of the bag adding even more strength and rigidity creating this beautiful work of artistry.

There’s absolutely no slumping. I had an opportunity to use the original “Kristy” the other day (totes are a bit too big for me) and it didn’t move. It was like a tank. I honestly don’t know how Kristy fills it with so many things! Give me my “Angela” satchel any day of the week and I’m happy. The tall panels of leather made that “Kristy” bag stand at attention. It was kind of amazing. I finally knew why Kristy designed it like that; so it would hold all of her things without falling. It’s gorgeous and it works. The most amazing thing is that it’s fun to carry. You would think that the weight of the leather makes it heavy but it doesn’t because of that wonderful north-south handle she designed to lay across the arm and the shoulder strap is the perfect length. When I had the tote, I abused it. (She’s reading this now.) I don’t abuse bags, she does. But I truly abused it and it stood up. I’m sure you’ve had or maybe have bags that slump. I know I’ve had a few. I guess they’re good if you want that lack of structure.

Artist Kristy Lash Trend setting handbag panelized leather cubist style handbagh The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Panelized leather American made handbags

The back side of the trend setting Kristy tote shows the structure created by using panelized leather on the handbag. Kristy’s signature was tooled into a leather tab at the bottom of her inaugural handbag trimmed with pigskin suede.

Both Kristy and Dave choose the best parts of the hide that will work for the handbag they are making. If they need a soft, supple part they cut from the neck or belly area and if they need strength and rigidity they take it from the back or shoulder. Working with grain, tension, stress points, and natural flow of the hide or its intrinsic character allows them to create bags that become monolithic. Overlap of leather panels and rows of double hand-stitching give reinforcement. The wrapped corners add stability. This interconnectedness of each part creates a homogenous article. By layering this collection of leather parts and hand-stitching them together with waxed thread, an amazing handbag work of art is created. It can be likened to how cubist painters layered transparent geometric shapes on top of one another to create masterpieces.

This hand-stitched, panelized, cubist-look is distinctly ours. It creates our brand. Actually if you browse through some of the artwork from the Cubist movement you might be able to see why we feel our bags are evocative of this style of art. Particularly the work by Pablo Picasso, Brick Plant at Tortosa caught my eye, not necessarily for the abstract layering but for a specific shape I noticed. Do you see anything in that work that resembles a Kristy Bag?

trend setting handbag design detail sunglass sling on satchel prototype Kristy Lash innovative designer The Kristy Bag by CG Crabtree Gardens

Kristy Lash holds the body of a satchel prototype with her sunglasses resting in the glass sling on the front of the bag. The reflection of the side of this satchel in the glass door resembles an object in Picasso’s cubist painting The Brick Plant at Tortosa.

When you see one of our bags out there, you will immediately be able to distinguish it as a Kristy Bag by CG. There aren’t any other bags out there that look like our handbags. It’s nice knowing that they are setting trends in the handbag design industry. As Kristy would say “It makes me happy!” We are expecting other designers to soon complement us by suggesting our look with their own handbag designs and we do look forward to that day. As Pablo Picasso once said “Bad artists copy, good artists steal”.

The Kristy Bag by CG offers handbags that have head-turning looks, great quality and most of all, integrity. We sell integrity, it’s a part of our brand. I must not forget to mention the fact that our bags are American made – by hand, by us.

I’m leaving you with this nice bright, warm photo of our Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash posing with her tote bag against the backdrop of the late summer goldenrod fields at Crabtree Gardens. I hope it lifts your spirits wherever you are.

Trend setting handbag designer Kristy Lash  Handbag Hottie strikes a pose with tote bag in goldenrod field at Crabtree Gardens The Kristy Bag by CG

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash strikes a pose in the heat of the day in this photo holding her trendsetting tote handbag with a field of goldenrod as her backdrop. Photo location: Crabtree Gardens, LLC, Drums, PA

 

Coming up: Henna on Handbags and Wiskers on Kittens

Written by Sandi Crabtree for The Kristy Bag by CG

 

Thanksgiving Weekend-Handbag Holiday

“Deck the halls with boughs of handbags Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la,la,la”

“Tis the season to be jolly, Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la”

WE ARE GETTING GEARED UP FOR OUR BIG DAY!!

The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Christmas Open House Handbag Open House Gifts for Wives

The fireplace mantle at the Carriage House at Crabtree Gardens, LLC in Drums, PA is all decked out with “boughs of handbags” and handbag hardware in preparation for the upcoming Christmas Open House to be held on November 30, 2014 from 1-4 PM.

The Kristy Bag by CG is holding a Holiday Open House this coming Sunday, November 30, 2014 from 1-4PM right after the Thanksgiving holiday, a great shopping weekend!

The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Christmas Open House Handbag Open House Gifts for Wives1

A Gift Certificate from The Kristy Bag by CG will make you the best Santa EVER! Kristy designed the gift certificate to look like the front of a wristlet.

We have plenty of gift certificates and a limited number of wristlets and bagettes for sale that day. Orders will gladly be accepted for smaller items before Christmas (depending on our backlog) and we can certainly provide gift certificates for 2015 delivery on any larger bags ordered that day. 2014 pricing will be in effect through the end of the year, so get in on the ground floor before our handbag line prices increase for 2015.

Trend setting handbag with henna The Kristy Bag by CG  Crabtree Gardens handbag line Christmas Open House Handbag Open House Gifts for Wives

Original henna artwork by Kristy Lash enhances the natural color “Bagette” that will be given away to one lucky visitor at The Kristy Bag by CG Handbag Open House on November 30, 2014. Buy American made from small businesses like us!

We have a very special giveaway!! Kristy combined her talents as an artist and bag designer and designed this striking Bagette with her original henna artwork. It’s initialed by her as well.  It is a highly coveted piece and will most likely become a collector’s item!!! Visitors can enter their name in a drawing for this gorgeous piece. You must enter the drawing in person at the Open House that day.

In addition to rolling out our henna option, we have much more lined up for 2015!! Stop in and talk to us about what’s going on and speak with both Kristy Lash, handbag designer and Dave Crabtree leather artisan about what goes in to making these exceptional custom made handbags. For more on our event please click on our EVENT PAGE.

Hope to see you there!

Sandi

 

How to “Bag” That Turkey

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash Thanksgiving  How to Bag That Turkey The Kristy Bag by CG Garden inspired handbags tote1Today Dave and I caught sight of a beautiful Indian maiden taking advantage of the “Indian Summer” temps while she foraged through the gardens, searching for nuts and berries with an American handmade leather “Kristy” tote at her side. We wondered why she used such a roomy bag for gathering those nuts and berries, surely a smaller more compact bag such as the “Angela” satchel would have served her better.

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash The Kristy Bag by CG holds trend setting tote bag in garden dressed as Indian maiden We were able to distinguish it as the trend setting handbag by its Espresso Brown saddle stitches that held the veg-tanned full grain cowhide panels together.  From our vantage point, it looked like her clothing was made from the same soft and luxurious “Lining a la Lash” material that lines all of the handbags made by that boutique handbag company, The Kristy Bag by CG, but we couldn’t be certain. As we continued to watch her foraging, we had flashbacks of seeing red and that “Kristy” tote next to another Indian maiden once before.

Turkey and a Handbag Thanksgiving  How to Bag That Turkey The Kristy Bag by CG Garden inspired handbags

This wild turkey tried to abscond with the trend setting “Kristy” tote bag.

All of a sudden, a wild turkey swooped down and snatched up the tote by the “Stitch in Nine” shoulder strap before she could grab hold of it. Although she didn’t have her bow and arrow with her, fortunately, safely tucked inside her leather fringe-topped UGG® boots, she had a meat cleaver.

Thanksgiving  How to Bag That Turkey The Kristy Bag by CG

The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Handbag Hottie  Indian maiden at Crabtree Gardens

She ran after the turkey who took her bag! But just as soon as she heard the click from our camera, she threw the cleaver into the ground and struck a pose!

The Kristy Bag by CG Kristy Lash Handbag Hottie  Indian maiden at Crabtree Gardens 1

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash strikes a pose whenever she hears the click of a camera!

 

The beautiful Indian maiden just happened to be our own Handbag Hottie, Kristy Lash!

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash Thanksgiving  How to Bag That Turkey The Kristy Bag by CG Garden inspired handbags tote

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash chases down a wild turkey that snatched up her trend setting “Kristy” tote while she foraged for nuts and berries in the garden..

Kristy was not only able to secure her award-winning “Kristy” tote with that bounty of nuts and berries that she found, but Thanksgiving dinner as well.

nuts and berries in handbag

Kristy Lash Handbag Hottie Thanksgiving How to Bag That Turkey The Kristy Bag by CG nuts and berries cocktail

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash enjoys the “Nuts and Berries” cocktail after her big day chasing down a wild turkey.

Happy Thanksgiving to our “tribe” ! We are thankful for each of you for following our journey, reading and sharing our posts and spreading the word for us. May you have a beautiful, bag filled, bountiful holiday!

Kristy, Sandi and Dave

Goldilocks and The Three Bags

Kristy Lash  Dave Crabtree Trendsetting handbag designer stunning handbag line The Kristy Bag by CG Crabtree Gardens handbag line

Kristy Lash and Dave Crabtree stand on the shore of Lake Wallenpaupack with three stunning handbags from The Kristy Bag by CG. The trend setting handbags are inspired by nature.

Stories, stories and more stories. Don’t we just love stories, especially ones that teach us lessons? Take for instance the story of “Goldilocks and The Three Bags”, I bet that’s one you haven’t heard before. A few weeks ago, Kristy, Dave and I planned a day trip to the Poconos to treat ourselves to bit of shopping at the outlet stores and a gastronomic feast at The Alpine Wurst and Meat House an amazing German deli, butcher shop and restaurant that is appointed in gorgeous oak wood chairs and tables with hand carved Black Forest cuckoo clocks and scenes of the Alps. The servers dress in lederhosen and dirndl and it’s the kind of place you want to linger at all day. At least we did anyway, because every Thursday starting at 11:30 they serve a “Sausage Buffet”, our main point of attraction! We gorged on the food and of course brought some home too! Off topic-we also saw an elderly gentleman dining there that could have been the real Santa. Kristy and Dave wouldn’t let me approach him.

Kristy Lash  Dave Crabtree Trendsetting handbag designer stunning handbag line The Kristy Bag by CG Crabtree Gardens handbag line

Dave Crabtree and Kristy Lash with their trend setting handbags in tow, walk toward the largest bluestone building in the world, The Silk Mill located in Hawley, PA.

Dave and I had been to the Alpine a little over a month ago and we knew Kristy would enjoy the German feast and visiting The Silk Mill, which is the largest bluestone building in the world. Its main level is occupied by trendy shops with upscale items. They are the kinds of things that you buy for the special people in your life because deep down you wish someone would buy them for you. It’s filled with classy things! There’s an art gallery and boutique shop and one that sells all kinds of organic foods and fresh produce plus others. On a higher lever Ledges Hotel occupies space and their restaurant is called Glass. Overlooking a waterfall, it’s truly a memorable location to dine.

This was actually the first time that the three of us were out together in public carrying our trend setting handbags. Since the minute the crossbody prototype became a bag, Dave has not let go of it. He wanted to use it to carry the camera which we took along for photos of the bags near Lake Wallenpaupack. Kristy and I joke about how much he LOVES it. It really is a stunning handbag, especially with that “stitch in nine” long shoulder strap that crosses the body. Kristy was supposed to start using it but he continues to find reasons to hold onto it.

Kristy Lash Trendsetting handbag designer  Handbag Hottie stunning crossbody handbag line The Kristy Bag by CG Crabtree Gardens handbag 1

The Handbag Hottie, Kristy Lash strikes another pose with the new “Cheri” crossbody handbag from The Kristy Bag by CG which features a hand-stitched shoulder strap using the “stitch in nine” technique.

We were browsing inside one very trendy shop called Art on the Edge ogling at the gorgeous things, when the woman tending the shop stood up from behind the counter and said “OK, I must ask- I love bags and I’m seeing the three of you walking around in here with similar bags, they are beautiful, where did you find them?” Completely surprised, the three of us turned to her from different locations in the store. I said (smiling ear to ear) “we make them, we have a handbag business.” I introduced Kristy as the handbag designer and Dave as her business partner. The woman asked “Do you have wholesale pricing? I’m interested in carrying them here in the store.”

There we stood, with our bags on our arms, with surprised stares looking at this woman, utterly wordless for a few brief seconds. We knew our bags were great, we knew they were head-turners, we knew they were quality and our friends and tribe loved them. But when a complete stranger who buys merchandise for an upscale shop approaches you about carrying them in the shop, you should be prepared. You should be prepared for what the universe has in store for you. Heather Hoffman handed us her card and said “Let me know your pricing.” We spoke a bit about our bags, the leather, hand-stitching and showed her the lining. We handed her our card and explained that we had just begun our handbag journey and would gladly get back to her with some information.

We felt like the three bears in the story of Goldilocks. There were the three of us, content with very full stomachs, shopping along with our 3 bags; Kristy holding “Kristy”, Dave coveting the crossbody, and me with the satchel just enjoying the day. Out of nowhere a beautiful woman jumps into our vortex and brings a new awareness to who and what we are. We had been validated. It’s always nice to hear validation.

Though the lesson in our story is different than what was learned in the Goldilocks fairy tale, it is still a good lesson to be learned. Be prepared for amazing things to happen when you do what you love and it comes from the heart. Our fairytale has just begun.

Follow the Journey of Kristy Lash and Dave Crabtree Trend setting handbag designer The Kristy Bag by CG Crabtree Gardens handbag

Walking the path to the water’s edge along Lake Wallenpaupack, Kristy and Dave contemplate their next step to marketing their trend setting handbag line, The Kristy Bag by CG.

Follow the Journey of Kristy Lash and Dave Crabtree Trend setting handbag designer The Kristy Bag by CG Crabtree Gardens handbag 2

Kristy Lash and Dave Crabtree

The Man Behind the Handbag

Dave Crabtree leather artisan The Kristy Bag by CG crossbody unisex handbag trend setting handbag designer Crabtree Gardens handbag line

Caught in a candid shot, Dave Crabtree tests the length of the shoulder strap on the incomplete prototype of the “Cheri” crossbody, the newest addition to The Kristy Bag by CG handbag line.

Here’s an interview with the man behind The Kristy Bag by CG, the trend setting handbag that is turning the heads of both ladies and gentlemen, our talented leather artisan, Dave Crabtree.

Sandi: “When did you first know that you enjoyed working with leather?”

Dave: “I always loved to make things. When I was young I remember how I loved making things at summer camp. I think I was about thirteen when I asked my parents for a leather kit so I could make some cool things like wallets and belts. They gave me a Tandy Leather Kit that year as a Christmas gift. It had about five basic tools and a few small craft projects in the kit. The promotion was that if you bought the kit, included were six one-hour lessons on how to tool leather.

Dave Crabtree hand tooling leather artisan The Kristy Bag by CG  American made leather handbag trend setting handbag designer Crabtree Gardens handbag line1

Leather tools and the original handle of The Kristy Bag by CG rest on a cutting board in the workshop of Dave Crabtree, leather artisan.

Sandi: “Tell me a little about leather lessons.”

Dave: “We lived on the outskirts of Pittsburgh and my dad worked in town, so I would take the trolley into the city after school one night a week and meet him. We had a nice dinner in a local diner and then we went to the lesson at the Tandy store. He waited there while I learned to carve and tool leather. It was great marketing on their part because when you went to the lessons there was a whole world of kits and tools that you wanted.”

Dave Crabtree hand tooling leather artisan The Kristy Bag by CG crossbody unisex handbag trend setting handbag designer Crabtree Gardens handbag line

Dave Crabtree uses a carving tool to cut the outline of the CG logo for a handbag into a square of leather.

Sandi: “What leather skills did you learn?”

Dave: “The lessons taught me the basic way to carve designs in leather with special leather tools. I was the youngest person there at the time. There was a group of older guys who got together and did leather work, kind of like a club. They gave me tips and pointers on better ways to hold the tools and what to watch out for when working with the leather. It was a great opportunity and I really enjoyed those lessons.”

Dave Crabtree hand tooling leather artisan The Kristy Bag by CG crossbody American made leather handbag trend setting handbag designer Crabtree Gardens handbag line

A leather tool is used by steady-handed Dave Crabtree to impart a shaded pattern into the carved CG handbag logo.

Sandi: “What items did you make with your leather skills?”

Dave: “At the time, I just made small things like coin purses and wallets, things that a kid would find interesting. Then later, when I got older I started a small business of my own custom designing tooled knife sheaths, rifle slings, belts, holsters, wallets and purses. I made a few patterns and gave customers a choice of what would work on their items. I sold a lot of those things now that I remember. It was towards the sunset of the hippie days and hand-tooled things were all the rage. The name of my business was Crabtree Naturals because everything I did used natural veg tanned leather.”

Sandi: “What happened to Crabtree Naturals?”

Dave: “The recession set in and I needed to get a real job in addition to the leather work. So I took a full-time position at a butcher shop. Oddly enough, I was just working with a different part of the cow. There was a local club that asked me to do a presentation at their “Arts Night”. When the article about it ran in the newspaper, I was contacted by a guy who was starting a leather distribution warehouse. He wanted to know if I was interested in purchasing leather from him. I went to his warehouse which was near the butcher shop I worked at and purchased a side. It wasn’t too long after that, he came in and offered me a job working for him as a “Warehouse Supervisor” for Bovine Industries. I took the job.”

Sandi: “What were your duties as a warehouse supervisor?”

Dave: “I oversaw the grading on every side that came in from the tannery. Based on brand markings, holes, range marks, tick bites and overall size of the hide, they were graded from one (top quality) to four. I was also responsible for matching up the hide to the customer’s needs. I prepared for the leather sales shows and traveled to cities selling our leather. It was here that I met some of the finest leather handbag artisans in the country. It was a demanding job but I learned everything about leather because I was around it constantly. Within three years the distribution warehouse expanded into a custom tanning business in the US called Leather Source. I left the leather industry for a position in industrial manufacturing that required less travel but always had my heart in leather.

Sandi: “Would you say that working with leather is your passion?”

Dave: “Working with my hands and creating something is my passion. With leather, I do well in my opinion.”

Dave Crabtree hand tooling leather artisan The Kristy Bag by CG  American made leather handbag trend setting handbag designer Crabtree Gardens handbag line

Rays of sunlight stream in onto the work surface of Dave Crabtree at the Carriage House Artist Studio, home of the Kristy Bag by CG. Dave is intent and finds pleasure in his passion by working with leather and creating gorgeous veg tanned leather handbags.

Dave Crabtree hand tooling leather artisan The Kristy Bag by CG  American made leather handbag designer Crabtree Gardens handbag line1

In the kitchen where their business began a few short months earlier, the look of elation can be seen on the faces of Dave Crabtree and Kristy Lash as they met a noon deadline on September 1, 2014 for the completion of their first handbag- the”Kristy” tote. They are the “Ultimate Handbag Team”!

 

 

“Deer” Lonely Lady Handbags

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash Deer Lonely Ladies Buck Season The Kristy Bag by CG Bagette 8 point rack garden inspired handbag Hunters wives

The Kristy Bag by CG is holding a handbag open house that can make the “deer lonely ladies” forget all about missing their guys who are prepping to get their gear ready for the first day of buck season in Pennsylvania.

While your man is out trying to bag a buck, “bag” a hide of your own! Typically the first Monday after Thanksgiving is the opening of buck hunting season in Pennsylvania. On the weekend before opening day most hunters are busy getting their supplies ready, sighting in their rifles, airing out their clothing and dreaming of that 12 point rack of antlers that they believe they deserve to bring home this year. Others may have packed their supplies and headed for their cabins in the mountains to spend time with their buddies who are on the same emotional wave lengths as them. It doesn’t matter where they are, it is certain that their minds are on one thing only, and that is bagging a buck. Oh, and I forgot to mention that all of this creates a huge testosterone pumped high.

Trend setting handbags The kristy bag by CG garden inspired by nature Pennsylvania buck hunting season hunters wifes gifts 1

These classically beautiful handbags made of natural veg tanned leather blend beautifully with the natural shades of deer antlers collected by Pennsylvania hunters.

This allows you, the “deer lonely lady”, to do something that will give you some pleasure. That my friends is of course, shopping! He’s spending dough on all of that hunting stuff right? Well, what’s good for the buck is certainly good for the doe. So indulge! While he’s in that state of bliss, let him know that you’ll be heading to a handbag open house on Sunday, November 30, 2014 from 1-4 PM to “bag your own hide”. You can let him know that your full-grain cowhide is tanned using organic materials. It’s also hand-cut, hand-punched, hand-stitched and made into a functional fashion accessory – a handbag. Share with him that the lining is full-grain pig suede and that this trophy is of heirloom quality. Tell him that they are made right here in Pennsylvania at a naturalized garden where wildlife abounds.

Handbag Hottie Kristy Lash Trend setting handbags The Kristy Bag by CG garden inspired handbag handbags for hunters wives

Trendy handbag designer Kristy Lash stands behind her collection of handbags from The Kristy Bag by CG 2014 handbag line made at Crabtree Gardens in Drums, PA. Clockwise from right: “Kristy” tote, “Ivanna” wristlet, “Angela” satchel and “Bagette.

Best of all share a photo with him and maybe the sight of all of these antlers will make him so dizzy from buck fever that he will hand over the checkbook and say “Deer, your wish is my command”! If that doesn’t get his interest, then maybe Kristy dressed as the Handbag Hottie will get him to connect the dots-handbags made by hand from The Kristy Bag by CG make women (and men) look and feel good!

Deer Hunter wives handbags made in Pa Natural veg tanned cowhide deer antlers

This “Ivanna” wristlet is surrounded by a plethora of deer antlers that were collected by local hunters. It makes a wonderful grab and go handbag.

 

Visit us at the Carriage House Artist Studio at Crabtree Gardens in Drums, PA on Sunday, November 30, 2014, the day before the first day of buck season to meet our trend setting handbag designer Kristy Lash and leather artisan Dave Crabtree who create these one-of-a-kind handbags that are creating a buzz in the handbag industry. This is a rare opportunity to see how our handbags are constructed and actually feel the quality of the leather and the hand-stitching.

Kristy Lash Handbag designer accessories for the home

Our collection of deer antlers will be used to make an authentic antler chandelier for our workshop.

If you can’t make the open house and are interested in placing an order for a handbag or a gift certificate, we will be more than happy to send a sample of our leather with stitching out to you. For more information about the open house visit our event page. For photos and pricing of The Kristy Bag by CG visit our price page on this blog or visit Crabtree Gardens, LLC website for directions. The Kristy Bag by CG has an appropriate handbag for any occasion. Don’t be a “deer” lonely lady, be handbag happy. When you bag yourself a Kristybag you’ll feel like a handbag hottie!