Today, I am featuring Diana, a crafter who re-purposes and up-cycles clothing. Although she uses the name Heart Felt Creations by Diana, you can find her purses in her daughter’s etsy shop. I hope to have a giveaway of her daughter’s cloth bags later this year. Just in time for Earth Day, here is Diana’s story.
:: :: :: :: ::
I have been making the felted purses for about 2 years. A friend of mine got me started. She had purchased a number of magazines that had pictures of different felted purses and designs. I really liked what I saw and decided I wanted to try to make some as gifts for family and friends.
I work in our church’s clothing closet and find the wool sweaters there. I then take them home and shrink them and have a number of different vintage patterns that I use as patterns of styles from the 1920’s, 1930’s, 1940’s and 1950’s.
I also have a needle felting machine I use to felt yarns into the wool fabric to create designs as well as to add scrap fabrics. The scrap fabrics come from our clothes closet, local retails stores, and garage sales to decorate the purses with flowers that I cut from scrapbooking dies. I have purchased wool roving from a number of different suppliers and add buttons, beads, ribbons, whatever I can find that will add interest. No two purses ever come out the same and are each unique.
:: :: :: :: ::
How inspirational! Diana takes unwanted things and puts some love into them, ending up with a purse for someone to love.
I am reviewing a red purse. Doesn’t it look nice?
Looks. This purse looks cute and different enough to be individual, yet mainstream enough to not scream “Hey! I’m handmade!” The lining is very fun.The strap hangs from my shoulder at the right length for me. The purse itself has pleasing and expected dimensions. The embellishments add texture and interest. I’m not sure of the timeless quality of the embellishments. However, if viewed as a seasonal item, I think the issue matters little when priced at $30.
Function. Purses are for holding things, and this purse can hold a lot. It has a generous pocket in the lining that I would use for a cell phone or keys. The felt is a lightweight, flexible, and very sturdy fabric. This baby can hold a lot of stuff, no matter how much your stuff weighs.
Everyone uses purses with her own unique habits, so take the two drawbacks that I see with a grain of salt. 1) This purse cannot “stand up.” It has to lay down or hang. I like to set my purse down on the counter while paying for my things at the register when I’m shopping. Maybe this is not an issue for some of you. 2) Felt collects (and shows) “stuff.” By stuff, I mean fuzz, dust, hair, cookie crumbs, glitter, etc. So if I were to lay this purse down on an upholstered chair in a house with furry pets, or at the table in the coffee shop, I’d be breaking out the lint roller once I got home.
Construction. I like the felted wool a lot. The needle felting secures the embellishments very well. The stitching seems secure. The magnetic snap is expected as the industry standard closure. The snap allows the embellishments to show well. I think the felted wool would take a LOT of wear without showing it.
Pricing. Because of the long-lasting characteristics of felted wool, I feel the pricing is very appropriate. A purse from Diana would be something you could use for a long time.
Overall. Diana’s upcycled purses get a thumbs up.
You could win one $30 purse, or get half off a higher priced purse.
How to enter
In order to enter the giveaway, I need two things from you. If I get just one, your entry will not be valid. Please enter only once. Continental U. S. only.
THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED
Thank you to all who entered.
. Take this survey to enter the giveaway. 2. Leave a comment here stating which purse in diymama’s etsy shop you hope to win.
The survey will be open on Monday, April 11, 2011, and will close on Monday, April 18, 2011 at 11 PM CDT.
Winner will be chosen with Random.org.
Purse photos courtesy of diymama. Headshot courtesy of Diana. Red purse photos by Julia.