I don't have cable so my HGTV viewing is pretty limited to hotels and my parents house. Still, I do love me some H&G. I have fond memories of one show in particular where they try to recreate a designer room on a budget. It was Sensible Chic and every show starts with an "inspiration room."
Well, welcome to Sensible Chic -The Purse Challenge Edition
While in Santa Fe, I had the Springtime In Paris Swap on my mind. For one thing, our hotel had a sweet French cafe and so did every other corner. Pâtisserie reminds me of Paris in the spring or really, any other season.
In one fancy French shop I spotted this Vera Bradley bag:We'll call this the "inspiration bag."
Now, Vera Bradley bags took up a whole wall of the fancy French shop and frankly, the prints on most of her bags heavily resemble many of the French provincial linens in the store.
See for yourself: French Provincial Linens VS Vera Bradley Fabric Collection.
Turns out Vera Bradley is a company from Fort Wayne, Indiana. Très Américain!
Anyway, while studying this bag I noticed that it's construction wasn't too challenging. I made a mental note to keep an eye out in thrift stores for a basket like bag. Maybe for the swap project?
In California we call making mental notes "manifesting." It's about sending our intentions out to the universe.
Well, like clockwork I manifested a potential bag at GoodWill Santa Fe.
The first step was to cut off dear Aunt Rosie's embroidered handiwork. Credit where credit is due, those were some beautifully even stitches. Also, adhered like nails to the basket.
Thankfully I remembered a Pampered Chef demonstration where the kitchen shears had cut a penny. Even with the wonder scissors it took a lot of effort to cut this band of iron clad embroidery.
Inside was a seriously gross and dirty shower curtain type lining.
Free at last!
Getting the old, discolored hot glue out of the basket weave was another story. I felt like a dentist and the patient had a serious tarter problem.
Another challenge was deciding weather or not to save the grody lining. (I haven't said "grody" since 8th grade, but when a word fits, use it.) I wanted to toss it quick, but it did make a perfect pattern for the new clean, crisp light blue cotton lining.
I had planned on looking around for some provincial style napkins or something to Frenchify the bag a bit more, but then I opted to just use some stuff from my stash.
I machine quilted the black and white print on the diagonal. Although the inspiration bag also has quilting, I did this to give it a "Chanel feel." It's a subtle nod to real French design.
In the end, inspiration bag $57 "Sensible Chic" bag $3. Quelle affaire !