A few weeks ago I had an opportunity that popped up. I was contacted by a company in Sonoma who had discovered my bags and wanted to get together for coffee and "talk story". For quite some time I have basically turned down such requests just because I am so very busy with all of my other wholesale accounts that I am not looking to take on any new ones. But for whatever reason, I really wanted to meet this husband and wife team. Where it will ever go, is not as important as the sharing of ideas that we had that day. Sometimes, it is just really nice to meet nice people!
It is sort of funny because when I first purchased my embroidery machine years ago...that started me thinking of making things to sell...even before my shoulder injury! I used to embroider all of my designs on a piece of fabric that was large enough that I could make a wine bag out of it. I didn't want to just make practice embroidery designs. I wanted to be able to give them as gifts or maybe even sell them so all of my beginning designs were made into wine bags! Later on, I went on an embroidered Christmas stocking craze and made personalized stockings for the children of all the people I worked with at the hotel.
Since meeting with my new friends from Sonoma, I have had wine bags on the brain again. The other day, I took a few hours and just rummaged through my fabric stash to see what I could come up with that would be good for the holidays. I think that wine bags can be "re-gifted" without any guilt. I try to make them beautiful to make the gift of wine seem even more elegant and special, but I also want to have the recipient reuse it and if that means "regifting" it...that is fine with moi! It is the gift that keeps on giving!
I created a basic design initially and have stuck to that pattern, but have had fun working in different textiles. I have used coffee bags, decorator prints, kimonos and obis! I like to add some sort of hardware on many of the bags that I make so started out just suspending an O ring from ribbon. That has evolved into a D ring that I suspend a charm from. Right now my favorite charm is the little glass vials that I fill with kona sand, shells, and Kauai sea glass. I have also filled some bottles with gold glitter and added a rolled up message of "Happy Holidays" or "Merry Christmas".
So far they have been selling very well so I have even created a section for "Wine Bags" in my Etsy shop.
a hui hou