Recently, we’ve talked about and praised handmade artists on Etsy for their creativity and lack of much deserved attention. Today, I’ve got something special to introduce to you—Kuma, the book clutch! Made by artisan Mari Ojasaar, Kuma is a handmade leather clutch made to look like a vintage book. A famous quotation or a phrase of your choice is engraved on the outside of the book clutch. It is however still a project in the works. It needs to come alive with your help!
Kuma is on Kickstarter and is in need of a lot of serious “backers” (investors with sweet rewards) by Sunday, February 9 to make Kuma a living creation. As you may know, the deal with Kickstarter is that the artist or project doesn’t get any of the donations if the goal amount isn’t met by the deadline. With every donation, you automatically get something from the artist.
For example: For a mere $15 donation, you get the satisfaction of helping Mari’s project Kuma happen AND get a butterfly brooch from below:
For higher donation amounts, you get bigger rewards—and as you may have guessed, including your very own personalized clutch like that piece of lemon cake above. Head on over to Kickstarter right now to give to a unique project and get back a reward. Watch the video below to learn more and fall in love!
I used to be the proud owner of these two Patricia Smith Moon Bags pictured above until I decided to sadly part with them last year. I do still have an original Patricia Smith belt buckle (pictured below), made from the same material the bag flaps were made of (acrylic). It is one of a kind and very rare. If you think the bags are scarce, the belt buckles are nowhere to be found! Fortunately, I am also giving this away to anyone who wishes to purchase it from me. Please send me an offer!
Who is Patricia Smith? Patricia Smith is an artist from Milwaukee, WI most well known, at least from my perspective, for her Moon Bags back in the 80s. I wish I could say that the material used to paint her artwork on was literally out of this world but alas I cannot. As much as I’d like to purchase a moon rock (an actual piece of the moon), I don’t think I’ve got the money for it! The lacquer that you’ll find as handles, flaps, or emblems on each Moon Bag is made of earthbound acrylic (that’s just acrylic).
Patricia hand painted each lacquer that you’ll find on her creations. She or her company also sold needlepoint kits to customers, and they in turn sent back their original work to be paired with Patricia’s lacquers and made as bags! What makes these bags extra special is that every piece is unique and no design was replicated. The clutch I had picture above is an example of one of those needlepoint bags. Not only would I love to get in touch with Patricia, I wouldn’t mind meeting the person who stitched the flowers as well. ;-)
In the late 90s, Moon Bags stopped being on the spotlight. Though that happened, Patricia still pursued the sheer love of art, with or without commercial success, through painting.
Below you’ll find a video of a fellow fashionista raving about her Moon Bags collection:
There are all sorts of handbag styles to choose from—clutches, shoulder bags, handbags, etc. Below you’ll find some Moon Bags being sold by previous owners (like myself) of Patricia Smith’s creations:
If you’re a frequent eBay buyer and buy or sell large things, you might want to try something like courier service “bidding” to get the best deal on shipping: http://www.anyvan.com/courier-services
Some of us don’t wait for Halloween to wear “costumes.” For us, wearing elaborate or theme-inspired clothing is a daily matter. You call it costumes, we call it a way of living! Last year, I wrote about escaping from “Sartorial Stereotypes” for Halloween with just a quick list of ideas. So, for most people who are just looking for cool and obscure references for their Halloween costumes, how about you take a hint from the lovely Lene Lovich?
Lene Lovich (born Lili-Marlene Premilovich) is an American singer-songwriter New Wave artist from the late 70s-early 80s (my favorite period!). Her most famous hit was “Lucky Number.” This lady, although born in Detroit came from an English mother and an Yugoslavian father. She also went back to her mother’s country for an extensive period to study art. In fact, her iconic hairstyle with scarves came from how she covered her hair to keep it away while sculpting!
Looking at her clothing and hair in plaits, you can’t help but think of traditional Yugoslavian attire, most likely influenced by her father’s side. Below are a couple of photos of the country’s costume for women: