Sunday, February 8, 2015

Amazing Amanda and Her Messenger Bags

Polyester & Trash Etsy shop, messenger bag, upcycled materials
Recently I met the Amazing Amanda who has an Etsy shop (Polyester And Trash) when she purchased some vintage bowling patches from me.

I always visit my customer's shops, and I was quite taken with her messenger bags.

Here is the one I bought displayed on Miss Lizzie.

And here is the Amazing Amanda working in her studio.

I was thrilled when she gave me permission to feature her.

Amanda says, "I just finished a bag that is headed to Queensland, Australia. A woman bought it as a gift for her sister who is moving away.

 I started making these bags when I noticed that feed sacks were just hitting the dumpster at work. Since I started making messenger bags, I have operatives all over the store who save birdseed, bean and rice sacks.  The thrift stores in Michigan have been very fruitful. Evidently, I am the only person in town who hoards polyester knit and tacky ties from the 50s through the 70s.

"Here are a couple photos from the inside of my spare bedroom a.k.a. my 'studio'.

The shelf where I store all my fabric.

"The selection of ties I keep on hand. (It's always growing.)

Above is me at the machine making a new bag.

"A local gallery contacted me earlier. They think that I can sell a few bags from their location in the oldest section of Lansing, called Old Town. I have to appear before a panel and show them my wares. I hope that when they see them in person, I'll get a spot in the gallery. I've never made something that other people like before, so this is really exciting! "

Thank you, Amanda, for allowing me to feature you and good luck with the gallery!

Now time to show off my Domino Sugar bag.

Genuine Domino sugar bag along with different polyester fabrics and a tie.

I am very picky about my messenger bags.

They have to be tough to keep up at the flea market.

And super cute and cool!

Amanda leaves the label of the vintage tie showing.

The handle is backed with green corduroy and beautifully stitched.

 I am quite sure I had dresses of both these seventies plaids!

The gusset is denim with her Polyester & Trash label.

I turned the bag inside out so you could see how well-constructed the bag is.

I am loving that generous pocket!

Recycled, repurposed, and refreshed.

Amanda's messenger bags are simply amazing.

Here are a few pics of bags currently in her shop.

 Amanda's bags are all one of a kind.  Please go over to browse through her shop Polyester And Trash and make it a favorite.

See y'all! 

Use this discount code to receive 10% off your purchase at the Distressed Donna Etsy store:



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  1. Well Amanda certainly is amazing and I respect anyone who can sew!

  2. Amanda has a truly unique idea! I love your slogan, Recycled, Repurposed and Refreshed! You could paint signs on pallet boards with those words and be a hit!

  3. OMG - That's so co-incidental. I just stumbled across her bags on ETSY the other day and pinned one. I loved them. She's making something very cool.

  4. so sorry, obviously I meant one of YOUR bowling patches!!!

  5. I am making a mess of your comment section! My fingers are clicking before I know what I am doing! SO SORRY! I made a mistake in the original comment and thought it didn't delete when it actually did. What I wanted to say:
    I love messenger bags and these are so unique! How fun is that, that she is using one of your bowling patches! Isn't it nice when you get to see how a customer uses your item? I recently came across a fabulous feed sack pillow featured on a blog and the seamstress mentioned that she got it on an Etsy shop. It looked very familiar. When I contacted her it turns out that it was my feed sack that she used! I was thrilled!

  6. Amanda is quite talented! I love the vision people have. I am the type who can copy something I see, but have a hard time coming up with something new on my own. I envy that gift...:) You have it too for sure! I love the bag you chose...super cool! I am off to visit Amanda's shop now. Have a wonderful Sunday!

  7. Thanks for sharing Amanda's story. I did check out her Etsy shop and
    find her bags amazing and unique......what a talent she has!
    Love the one you chose.

  8. Very cool bag and Amanda is very talented!

  9. I know you must be thrilled with your bag, you love them so much. I love the unique ways that she uses her fabrics and trims. I am also jealous that she keeps her fabrics so neat. :)

  10. Wow those are so cool! I love things made out of recycled clothing and fabrics... and now feed bags! I'm heading over to check out her shop now!


  11. Such a nice feature, Donna--love Amanda's bags. Thanks for introducing her to us :)

  12. Thanks for introducing Donna ... her bags are beautiful ... love that she recycles. The ties make a beautiful shoulder strap. I love the one you bought.

  13. Amanda is so talented! I love that she is repurposing to make her bags. They are fun and fabulous. I'm popping over to her shop right now.

  14. Thanks for doing a feature on my shop, Donna. Your blog is fantastic! No wonder you have so many followers. Now you have one more! I am thrilled that you like your bag and are putting to use while visiting thrift stores and junk shops. I brought back about 15 feed sacks from Oaxaca, Mexico this summer, and the Domino sugar sack was one of my favorites! Thanks to everyone who visited my shop. I have gotten more views than I have ever seen before. It's great to meet some folks with similar interests!

  15. Her bags are darling and what a great recycle! A few years back my friend, Dolly held a quilting retreat and each day we awoke to a fun favor. One day she made us a bag out of a large old dog food bag. It's so fun and I love it! Especially cute because the quilt guild that I am a member of is called, The dog kennel girls. Best of luck to her! I think they will definitely sell there. Thanks for sharing with SYC.


I enjoy reading all of your comments and will always answer with email. I will try to track you down if you show up as a "no reply" commenter to let you know. Friends are like that!