We have been working our fingers off for the past seven months. Planning, drawing, writing, stitching, punching, waxing, selling and dreaming. We feel as if we’re headed in the right direction and we know that our bags are awesome. But the big question that comes to mind is how do we know if we’re on the right track?
We knew from the beginning that the journey was uncharted. Kristy and Dave entered into it with a “let’s see what happens” attitude. Along the route things always seemed to take care of themselves. The next step was always apparent. Handbag commissions are coming in and our blackboard is filled with names and the bags that are next up. It’s exciting to see the progress.
Our first namesake handbag after the inaugural trend setting “Kristy” was the “Sue” clutch and she has been completed (with owner signature) for delivery after Christmas.
The namesake handbag “Angela” is waxed and ready to stitch for delivery in early January. The namesake handbag Cheri (with owner signature) is on the worktable now, she was scheduled for a Christmas delivery.
The namesake “Cheri” was just about complete when Kristy noticed a small slice in the leather on the front of the bag. It bypassed Dave’s eyes when he punched and my eyes as I waxed. Dave and I work on leather in a flat position. Kristy bends it as she stitches so it would really only be apparent to her. It was an unfortunate circumstance that because of the location of the slice, and our hand-stitching process, the entire handbag had to be re-cut and stitched again, rather than try to disassemble it and reconstruct it. We didn’t try to glue it and pass it through. We did the right thing and let the owner know. Even though she didn’t receive it for Christmas, she knew that the bag she would be getting would be top quality. This small slice forced the team to re-evaluate the opening area and re-design it to avoid future knife slips. We are anxious to see the new re-designed opening and look.
Kristy was able to salvage the bag for our own workshop use by wrapping thread around the edges to cover the slice so it would look acceptable for a display bag. Until we are able to carve out time to get a bag of each made for inside the workshop this “adapted” crossbody will work to show clients the size.
Each bag that leaves here does have a special place in our hearts. That’s corny but it is true. It’s because we all have some “skin in the game”. Sometimes Kristy gets stabbed by the needle, or as most recently happened, a needle breaks off in her finger, hence photo of her with finger bandaged as she sips one of Dave’s signature cocktails, the Crabtree Gardens Cranberry Mink. (Follow our blog to see future post on Handbag Hottie dressed in Mink!) Dave and I reassure her that “no body does it better” so she quickly regains her composure and keeps on stitching. She is such a trooper, that Handbag Hottie!
Our journey is usually filled with fun and laughter except for some extremely stressful moments like the sliced leather on the front of the bag that we promised for Christmas delivery. There are great moments too like when we ship out big and little packages of handbag goodness.
There is so much goodness that we have to share. It’s really all coming together for us and it seems to be happening just as it should. We feel that we ARE on the right track! We are taking a few days off to celebrate Christmas and to show off our handbags to family and friends that visit. We will be back on the road to handbag making on Sunday December 28, 2014. We hope you are enjoying the ride!