From commission to completion
Placing an order on a new handbag is always an exciting moment - the start of a new journey. I feel it is fitting to mark this somehow, to give the client something to take home whilst they patiently await their commission. The commission-cards confirm the order and act as guarantee. Attached to them is the gold-plated disk, stamped with the individual sequence number of that particular model, in this case number 7 as it is just the seventh of this design I've undertaken. When the bag is completed this disc's counterpart will be etched and secured onto the bag itself. The client's name is inked onto a small vellum note and is hidden inside with the final stitches. It feels good to close things up with a thought of the person who I started this journey with.
Each commission has its own drawer in the studio where all the paperwork, gold-plated components and leather panels are slowly brought together. It will be its home for the duration of the bag's construction until it is time to finally hand-sew everything together. This is a very slow process but one of my very favourites. There comes a point where the almost-completed bag doesn't fit in the drawer any more, as if it is a recently hatched bird which has outgrown the nest. It always feels like it's time to focus on finishing it and let it out into the wider world. A final nudge and it can take flight.