Awhile back two things happened at the same time.... I was cleaning out some cupboards in the garage and found my grandfathers WW2 satchel which I had briefly used in college. Obviously it had been through a lot and I was contemplating keeping it or not since I'm trying my best to carefully consider family keepsakes that are not in use. Realistically, I wasn't going to bring it out to use again but what a connection to a man I've never met. The next day.... I was flipping through Real Simple when I noticed some lovely bags by forestbound. All of Alice Saunders utilitarian bags are created using found and salvaged material, primarily from WW2. Check out her design sponge interview here. I contacted her through her etsy shop after checking out some of the past beautiful bags she had created. And although she wasn't taking custom orders she said she would recreate the bag for me, so off it went to NY.
I'll now proudly be carrying this revitalized leather bottomed tote around town. I love that she was able to keep my grandfather's name and rank which were important to me. The rest is made from the deconstructed bag with the addition of the classic blue ticking. She even made a little pouch from some of the left over material. Check out the before and after photos on her blog.
So here's to reaching out for inspiration and collaboration, the results can be impressive. And here's to giving new life to old things instead of hiding them away.