Back when everyone was carrying purses the size of a house, I remember seeing a photo of Katie Holmes wearing what can only be described as the mother of all Birkins. The style blog that posted it made fun of it; they questioned whether Katie carried it so Tom could crawl inside and take impromptu naps.  I laughed (guilty as charged). Everyone was sick of enormous, body-sized sacks.  And then, I switched to a metal clutch the size of a brick, which inevitably weighs just as much as one (the "golden brick," I call it) because while I like to think of myself as someone who can pare down, let's be honest, I have serious trouble! For me, an exercise in "paring down" is more like an exercise in squishing down. I ask myself: would it be possible to fold my magazine into fours? Slice the edges off? Lip balm, in the dead of winter? My friend is carrying it! And cash...oh, forget about it! Who even carries that anymore?

But, after a long hiatus, I've begun to start thinking about big 'ol bags again.  It's sort of nice to be able to carry around a laptop and a book, a pair of sunglasses, an ipod, AND a lipstick sometimes, isn't it? It feels so indulgent! I'm living large... why YES, I have a chapstick, and NO, it's not melting in my pocket!!

It's also great to be able to wear a bag, and by that, I don't just mean carry it, but I mean, drape it around you like a dress, use it like a blanket on the train, hide behind it when you run into an ex... It's decadent, it feels good.  Like big furniture in a little room.  (I know there was a designer who said it makes women look dainty... who was that?!)

So this is my take on the big, fabulously luxurious, delightfully over the top bag.  It's made of leather, it's hand painted, and the chains are solid brass. It's lined in a combo of linen and leather.  When a bag is big, I like it to feel substantial.

The leather, in the process of being painted.  Some of you might remember a similar image from a while back...I originally made a pillow like this, from which I came up with the idea for this bag.

The pattern was very simple: a basic, rectangular tote.  I chose to leave the seams exposed, on the outside of the bag.

And, wearing it.  Which brings me to another thought.  Is matching (nails, shoes, bag, at its most extreme) really terrible? I used to be repulsed by it, but now, I don't know, I'm feeling the allure.



I know, I know, more shoes, you ask? This girl must be out of her gourd!  Probably so. But these aren't actually SHOES, I promise! Summer does crazy things to one's brain- one of those things was my thinking about the crystal spike platforms I made way back in the fall.  But now, what with the 102 degree heat wave that has me contemplating how much of my body I can stuff into the freezer, icy things are looking even more appealing.

Anyway, when I made the crystal spiked shoes the first time around, it was on a whim, basically from wire and spit, which is fine if you only plan to wear them out once, and tip toe with great delicacy.  This time around, I wanted a more permanent solution to my crystal spiked dilemma, and so I came up with this answer: harnesses.

I fashioned them out of nude and black harness leather, and fastened them with rivets, so they're very secure. I also used LONG straps so that you can secure them on nearly any shoe, or even up a leg... The more strap, the more possibility for layering and texture.

Long straps mean plenty of layering possibilities.  The next few pictures are the same vachetta leather crystal spiked harness, worn on the front of the foot, and then as a crystal spine on the back.


Black harness.  Different design, same idea:

A vachetta version of the black harness, worn differently.

And the best part? The thing that excites me the most? You can layer them!! Two harnesses... three harnesses... four harnesses...

Five harnesses... (excessive? More, more!!!)

And from the back:

And up close.  (I'm cheating a little, these two are harnesses I made but haven't had a chance to shoot. Soon, I promise!)

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