Waxed Canvas Bags

Waxed Canvas Bags - student project

Waxed Canvas Bags - image 1 - student projectHi there,

I am Amy and I make things. Especially things that are bright and colorful because I live in dreary Portland, Oregon and all of its 2.2 million metro area citizens have a love affair with dark winter gear during the 8 months that the Sun has a restraining order against us. We are modest folks, we don't want to stand out too much. Right.

Yeah, well, I was born and raised in the Caribbean so I like obnoxiously bright and bold colors. I also love practical, utilitarian, non-girly waxed canvas bags and there are several local and national companies creating these beauties. The great majority are made with fabrics in, you guessed it, very neutral colors. BOOOOO-RIIIIIING. Actually, they're not boring, they're quite wonderful. But, Caribbean Girl needs color.

Enter Collection No. 1 from Little Bright Studio! Ta-taaaaaaan. A collection of Really Cool Bags (TM) made with waxed canvas in bright colors and fun patterns. Here are the obstacles I hope to overcome soon (hopefully with help from this course):

1. I would like to acquire organic cotton canvas. Most of it comes in neutral colors. The possibility of hiring a screen-printer to carry out my designs on fabric will be determined next week when I meet with one locally to help me untangle the thoughts in my head.

2. I would like to incorporate leather into my bags. Lots of pretty leather hides are dyed with not-so-nice chemicals. Vegetable tanned leather is always the best option, though I have found a company from the UK that sells "organic" hides.

3. I want my bags (at least the bigger bags) to be waterproof/resistant. Waxing the canvas is the best process to do this. Waxing the canvas after the bag has been assembled has been suggested to me as the best method in assuring waterproofness (is that a word?).

4. I am slow at sewing. I know of two Portland-owned sewing mini-factories and I would like to begin producing my line locally.

5. I want to reduce as much waste as possible and want to offer a creative solution for shipping. Perhaps the bags can be shipped in an envelope that becomes a reusable grocery shopping bag.

6. My intention with Little Bright Studio is for it to be an instrument of change (gosh that sounds horrible pretentious, I apologize). I am a huge science nerd, and an advocate for educating our citizens on the importance of space exploration. I admire the business models of companies such as Tom Shoes and Warby Parker, i.e. buy one of their products, they send an equal product to a social group that needs it. A line of "Science Bags" is in the works (sketches) to help foster science education here in the US. I have no idea what kind of model to create, but I have yet to conduct thorough research.

Okay I yapped long enough now. Thank you for reading and am looking forward to seeing everybody's projects come to life.

All my best,