Archive for the ‘Commissions’ Category

Here’s another custom large tote and matching grab n’go, this time for the new Scoutie Girl, Tara Gentile! Her job is to scour the internet far and wide finding indie designers. I’m honored that she likes my work enough to want to lug it around!

Tara-Custom-Tote-GrabnGo--1I’ve said it before – I love making custom bags. Tara came up with the idea of a messenger style strap, but with the tote style bag. I LOVE IT! We also had a fun time picking out colors that I had in hand dyed canvas that were perfect for her!

She wanted a huge bag, that could hold all her stuff (and Lola’s too!). She also wanted a little bag that she could grab and escape with that holds only the essentials. Well this tote sure is big! Inside are 2 patch pockets divided into 1 large, 2 mediums and 3 penslips. There’s also a zipped pocket, a key leash and a cell phone pocket with Velcro flap, sized to hold her snazzy new iPhone (lucky gal – I’m SO jealous!)


There’s also a D-ring to clip the Grab n’Go on:


The Grab n’Go is just what it sounds like, a little bag to hold the essentials.

Tara-Custom-Tote-GrabnGo--4The  handle is also a key ring, and can clip off


On the back is a loop so you can wear it on a belt.

Tara-Custom-Tote-GrabnGo--3    I’m totally loving that the strap can be worn on the shoulder like a tote:


But it adjusts longer so it can be worn across the body, messenger style.Tara-Custom-Tote-GrabnGo--8

I’ve added this one to the list of bags I want to make for myself!


I hope she likes it as much as I do!

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I received a convo a couple of weeks ago…some one loved my little mini-doodles, they were perfect for her work. She also had to carry 20-30 3” x 5” index cards, could I make her a holder for them? Well, yes, yes I could! I even was able to dig out a scrap of the same piece of multicolored fabric i’d used to make her minidoodle, so they would match! Betty-index-card_0015 Betty-index-card_0012  Betty-index-card_0004Betty-index-card_0006 Betty-index-card_0023

I received another convo from her: she loves them, is using them and they are cute!

Yup, it’s why I do this…Everyday Art – bringing joy to the little things we touch every day!

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Here’s a hot off the ironing board new bag – it’s a rush job commission for someone who needs it so she can take it on a trip abroad – tomorrow! She came by Sunday morning to work out the details. I really like working this way – I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, making these bags are a LOT of work…so it makes it much more satisfying to know that what I’m making is JUST what somebody wanted! In this case, she wanted little bits of Velcro on the inside to hold some of the pockets (like the cell phone one) closed. Easy – peasy!

Another reason I love working like this is that people choose the colors that they love…sometimes it isn’t something that I would have put together, but if I do say so myself – these colors are fabulous!


It’s got a handle & magazine pocket on the back:


And inside is a special sleeve for the laptop with a velcro strap to hold it in. This also happens to hold my regular Macbook too! Yes, the Macbook Air is thinner, but she’s got a strechy foam case that she’s going to use for even more padding (beyond the 2 layers of quilt batting and heavy interfacing I use in a laptop bag…this baby has STRUCTURE!

Macbook-Air-Messenger_0021   Unseen in this picture are 1 zipper pocket as well as a divided patch pocket as well as a D-ring for her to clip her keys on (she didn’t want a key leash).


One side has a water bottle pocket,


the other, a cell phone pocket.


The front has two big pockets to hold a paperback and a scribbler or notelet:

Macbook-Air-Messenger_0012 The straps adjust so she can hold it on her shoulder:Macbook-Air-Messenger_0024

Or across her body:Macbook-Air-Messenger_0027

I hope she loves it, because I sure do!


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Laptop Bag for Liz!

1st of all, Stirling and my chaise are getting more blog time – Design Hole featured my before & after chaise today – WooHoo! Thanks for the bloggy love!

And now – Liz’s laptop bag! Liz is a wonderful friend when is a tremendous help in all that I do. We do the local art/craft fairs together, take our boys to the movies, and she does the Lion’s Share of picking up my boys and watching after them on school half days (pickup time ALWAYS falls during my time in the classroom). ANYWAY, last CHRISTMAS for Heaven’s sake, she got a new, small-ish laptop, a nice red one at that, and I told her I wanted to make her the perfect laptop bag. Laptop-Backpack18

She wanted it to be tall, rather than wide. It’s got a handle on the back:Laptop-Backpack19

And inside is a special sleeve for the laptop with a velcro strap to hold it in. Unseen in this picture are 1 zipper pocket as well as a divided patch pocket. Of course it has a key leash and 2 d-rings inside!Laptop-Backpack43One side has a water bottle pocket,Laptop-Backpack29the other, a cell phone pocket.Laptop-Backpack24The front has 2 pen slips as well as a big pocket to hold a scribbler or a notelet:

Laptop-Backpack33The straps adjust so she can hold it on her shoulder:

Laptop-Backpack12Or across her body:Laptop-Backpack09But WAIT! If I add d-rings to the bottom corners and order that fancy lobster claw hardware from Hong Kong, it turns into a backpack! How cool is that (the webmaster Mary thought up this genius idea…and just as soon as the website is up and running, she gets one of her very own…)Laptop-Backpack05 Laptop-Backpack22Laptop-Backpack06         

I’m very happy with this one! WooHoo! Liz likes it too (sorry no picture of her smiling face…she was off to marching band practice, i kept her laptop to take these pictures…so she can’t even read this entry until she gets it back!)

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This one is for a conductor. She needs a huge tote to all her stuff, which includes a bunch of scores and a baton. But then there’s times when she needs to just grab her keys, cell phone & wallet, so she ordered a matching clutch, which can clip right into the tote:




Look at all the pockets!



I really enjoy making a bag that’s just what someone wants: they’ve picked the colors and the motif, and any requested modifications. I really enjoy working this way, because each bag takes so long to make. I’m working on my website so all the info is available to my online friends, but if you’d like to order one NOW, here’s some info: Commission Bags

I wanna make one of these for myself!


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This one of for Mrs. A, a wonderful customer who works hard to keep me in business 😉   She wanted the nature’s sketches styled clutch…and I think it turned out quite nice:

Adama Clutch 002

Adama Clutch 005

I've changed how I construct these: I'm very happy with the improved topstiching around the top of the bag!

Adama Clutch 003

Putting the stiffner where you can see it allows me to hide the final seam!

Adama Clutch 006

If my little one’s cough gets better, Mrs. A will have a special delivery tomorrow!

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Another commissioned tote complete:

Liam turns 12 116 Liam turns 12 125Liam turns 12 132 

And yesterday was Tie Dye Day in my son’s 2nd grade class. This was fun, because I’d done this with the same teacher when my 6th grader had him for 2nd grade. Mr. Rude still has a picture of that class all wearing their shirts, and I’ll take one this afternoon! Here’s how I do the tie dye with the kids now, cut apart a milk jug and you have the perfect bowl to hold a swirled tee!

 Liam turns 12 136 Liam turns 12 137

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My friend Linda was one of the folks who, when she saw my Grab n’Go bags:,Grab n Go 0091000 held it at her hip and said “I want it to go over my shoulder like this!” So when she saw my new convertible clutches, she quickly snapped up 2, one for a family member who had recently had an achievement worth celebrating, and one for herself! I was able to quickly quilt the name of this lucky family member right onto the flap.

happy customer 002But then she thought of someone ELSE who needed one…and then someone ELSE who needed one: happy customer 003 I customized them all (but didn’t get close-ups) and sent her on her way.

When someone loves my  bags, they really love them. I’m moving towards a new model of producing these, where they are all commission based. I need to get organized so I can quickly explain colors, motifs, options etc…but I think this is where I want to go with the bag making. I’ll make one when I’ve got a customer who really loves the bags, and customize a bag specifically for that person.

Ultimately, I’d like to be in a world where this is happening with my art quilts…but for now, baby steps, we’ll go this route with my Everyday Art!

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Custom Messenger

One of the good things that came out of last weekend’s show was an order for a custom bag. She wanted the inset stripe design that I’ve done before, and a padded strap:messenger marijke

A larger pocket to fit her camera, so I added a pleat and some elastic to one side. To accommodate this I had to use a strap and buckle to close the bag instead of the velcro I usually use:messenger marijke  (7)messenger marijke  (4)

Look how the strap pad supports the strap!messenger marijke  (2) messenger marijke  (3) Lastly, she wanted a longer zipper on the inside pocket.messenger marijke  (5)

Of course, she wanted it done before this coming Wednesday so it could go to Europe with her. So, I made it, and almost had a nervous breakdown doing it! Mostly because I was concentrating on all the stuff that was different, and trying to get it done quickly, so I forgot the cell phone pocket I usually put on the side seam. 😦 I have a couple of ideas on how to add a cell phone pouch, but there was no way I was unpicking all those seams! We’ll see what she says when I talk to her!

I have to remind myself that what I’m doing is supposed to be fun, and I have to have time to make the things I want to make. I need to stop biting off more than I can chew!

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I did get to 2 performances of the opera I made tie dye tees for last weekend. The costumer did a great job of taking the tees I dyed and turning them into all sorts of differently shaped shirts! What I don’t have is a photo of the pareo I dyed for the lead to wear with a black bathing suit…it turned out great, and hopefully someone else has a photo of it. Anyway, here’s some photos (excuse the blurriness – these were all taken in a dark theater with the flash off). More photos are on my flickr site.

Elixer Saturday Perf Elixer Sunday Perf (62)Elixer Sunday Perf (64) Elixer Sunday Perf (8) 

I’m trying not to panic, but I have a lot of work to do for my next show. Plus, it’s getting towards the end of the semester, and I have to get ready for MayTerm! AAAHHH!

Item Date Due % Done
Floral quArt 3/20/2009 100%
30 Tie Dye shirts etc…for Elixer 3/20/2009 100%
Design Clutch – Will Tuba 3/26/09 100%
10 Notelets 4/24/09 10%
5 Warm Colors Grab & Go 4/24/09 0%
5 Warm Colors Clutch 4/24/09 0%
30 Going Green Totes 4/24/09 30%
5 Cool Colors Clutch 4/24/09 0%
Cool Colors quArt 4/24/09 0%
Crazy Colors Bags 4/24/09 0%
5 Cool Colors messengers 4/24/09 15%
Candied Fabrics Quilt 4/25/09 0%
Laptop bag for Liz 5/31/09 0%

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