There are several steps involved in creating and fabricating a bag, a briefcase, or a backpack. Every one of my creations follows a particular process, but it all starts with a sketch, an idea that germinates… and which turns into a pattern, then into a bag.
To realize this project, designed and sketched there before my eyes, I must determine the steps to follow for its making and specify them on my pattern, because an oversight happens so quickly in the workshop. Each piece must be assembled step by step to achieve a creation conforming to the model.
The proportions of the components must be established: front part, back, bottom, bellows, flap, … Once the proportions are more accurate, I transcribe the formats on large cardboards with different indications.
Thanks to this plan, I finally undertake my 1st try. I cut the pieces that will constitute my future bag.
By assembling and sewing the different panels, this first draft finally realized in three dimensions leads me to wonder about the general effect. I look at the whole and then at the details. Am I on the right track?
No, not quite, yet …
I make adjustments to the proportions. I observe the flap of the bag, I adjust the positioning of the clasp. I refine the lines, the volumes. And now? Yes, maybe …, but I need more features: interior and exterior pockets, partitions in the interior of the bag, etc. I fine-tune the handle and a general satisfaction sometimes follows. All of these changes make a good impression on me. This time, I won’t be giving up on this pattern anytime soon. You know in life, there are successes and also other creations that leave me wondering. For the latter, you’ll find them on sale in the back row … for the price of a song. And sometimes the rejects are the pieces that are most appreciated. Go understand? But that’s another story…
For the moment, let’s come back to our sheep, to this first draft. I just finished it and I’m excited, to see it there, there, there, under the flesh and blood of my eyes. I try my prototype over the shoulder, in my hand. I pivot in front of the mirror and do a tango step. I walk around with it to know how it feels. Its balance, how is it? Does it follow my movements? Yes and no, then there is this and that or I get totally carried away. All family members are involved. Everyone tries it, examines it. We take a close look at this inert patient who asks only to make its way.
I note the changes to be made.
Then I start again. I do several other tries.
A handbag or a briefcase is for me a small portable piece of furniture. It will go wherever we go. This container is entitled to my attention. After all, it collects our personal effects, our secrets, our computer. Ah, heaven, I forgot the main thing: the wallet … that’s serious!
As soon as the pattern is suitable and the tests are successful, I will create several versions in different types of leather and fabric, as well as in several colors. This makes sure that the same pattern gives a completely different result depending on the material chosen. And that is the nice surprise of the endeavor! You guessed it: I love to explore. Also the elements accompanying the bag (clasps, pockets, handles) completely change its appearance. And I make yet another bag, with this clasp rather than the other and why not with this one or with this material?
This is how I passionately create each of my bags, as if they were intended for a member of my family. Each handmade bag is 100% crafted here in Montreal, in my little workshop. My hands are creatively working and I savor the hours of pleasure that lie ahead …
In short, I can say that I am proud of my products. I have patiently concocted them.