I Overheard One Woman Refer To It As "The Gay Cowboy Purse"

Every year, a very worthy charitable organization holds an event wherein they auction off one-of-a-kind handbags made by local Charlestonians (and, on occasion, British girls masquerading as Charlestonians, as long as they don't try and get away with using "y'all.) Because I get disproportionately excited about a trip up the freeway to A.C. Moore, and because I'm of the opinion that if Nicky Hilton can make handbags, then so can I---but most of all because I'm a big believer in the organization that hosts the silent auction, and if anyone's worth getting glue gun burns for, THEY ARE---I've made a purse for the last three years.

The first year, I did this one. Sex & the City had just ended, and it was all anyone was talking about, so I called the purse "You've Got To Carrie On." It was sold to a very sweet 15-year-old girl, who is probably now cursing me for allowing her to think that a Sex & the City bag would be half as cool two years later. It was very au courant at the time, I promise, but I bet it's lying at the back of her closet these days, while she hits the town with her Big Love bag or her Lost pocketbook instead.

When it was time for the auction last year, I was in the middle of a strict self-imposed NO CANDY EVER! regime, which for me is the equivalent of a NO AIR EVER! or a NO SLEEP EVER! or a NO LIPGLOSS EVER! regime---which is to say, near impossible. I think you will agree that the effects of such stringent sugar deprivation manifested themselves in my choice of purse design that year. I'm not quite sure who bought it, but I bet whoever she is, she's now cursing my decision to shellack the candy before gluing it on, because it would have made a delicious snack once it had exceeded its potential as a bag. I should have called it "In Case of Emergency, Break Varnish."

This year, I'd just seen Brokeback Mountain when I was trying to come up with ideas for my purse, and since that "I wish I knew how to quit you" thing hadn't become QUITE so mind-numbingly overdone yet, I made this little number---entitled "Brokebag Mountain," get it? get it?---which sold yesterday for $160.

I know! A hundred and sixty dollars! It kind of makes the grumbling I did about the $8.99 piece of brown suede a little unwarranted. (I swear it was in the $5.99 pile, but when the cashier rang it up, I just couldn't be bothered to protest. Until I was safely in the car on the freeway, that is.) Still, the nice chunk of change my purse fetched for charity doesn't even come close to the FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS someone paid for a bag signed by Oprah. Signed, I said, not made. Now, you can say what you want about Martha Stewart---and yes, I know you will---but I think we can all agree that she would have made a bag. With a piece of twine, some lemon peel, a couple of sticks of gum, and that old sock she found at the back of the dryer, probably. Without getting glue gun burns, no less.

Apr 08, 2006

brokebag mountain... i love it! and it's a very cute bag, holly. :)

Apr 08, 2006

Am I the only one taking crazy pills here or did the "not a family friendly blog post" with the "you just have to f@*# us" hilarious story just up and disappear?

One day you will open a twee little store full of things that make people smile and laugh, and I will spend entirely too much money there.

Apr 08, 2006

i love the colors of this bag.

and i'm wondering how long the candy bag lasted before pieces were chipping off. or, maybe the owner just put it in her desk drawer at work, and snacked on it every now and again.

Apr 08, 2006

Brilliant. Except the silhouettes are missing something.

Apr 08, 2006

I want a gay cowboy purse! ; ) They are all awesome-looking, indeed.

Apr 08, 2006

Your bags rock!

Nothing But Bonfires
Apr 08, 2006

StampyDurst -- that post did disapppear. It was not a cease and desist from Dr. Assey (as one email I got suggested!) but rather a realization that I like TL FAR too much to risk the possibility of her getting fired (it's a small town, it could happen.) Also, my shop would never be TWEE! Isn't twee for floral teapots and thatched rooves on cottages? But thank you for (hypothetically) spending a lot of money there anyway!

Apr 08, 2006

LOL - I, too, was wondering where that post went ... good call. (Although I still have a copy of it [thanks to FeedBlitz] so I could email it to anyone not living in Charleston ...)

Very snappy little bags. Colour me IMPRESSED.

And the reason Oprah rocks so hard at what she does? Because she can't do anything else (like, say, use a gluegun). It's a trade-off, I believe. Or at least I comfort myself with that thought.

alice, uptown
Apr 08, 2006

Would Martha use an old sock from the dryer or lint from the lint trap?

Thespian LLibby
Apr 08, 2006

And TL TRULY appreciates the deletion of the post. And the problem with sharing it, s@bd, is that I am employed (at least for the moment) by a national organization. And I obviously totally paranoid; you become that way when you live in a red state. But call me anytime and I'll relay the oral version.

Thespian LLibby
Apr 08, 2006

"...I AM obviously totally paranoid....." And becoming obviously totally illiterate as well....

Apr 08, 2006


I write a weekly column on local blogs/podcasts, and I talked about yours this week. So, check the city paper next wednesday, and keep up the funny!


Apr 08, 2006

Completely understood.
Post? What post?
Email? No idea ...

Apr 08, 2006

Well, I understand why the post is gone, but I'm just glad I read via bloglines, otherwise I would have missed it!

TL - I too am in a red state, work for a big company, and am thus paranoid about what I write about work on the blog. I feel ya.

Holly - the bags are awesome! I am so NOT artsy. You could have provided me with the design, the materials, and pages of instructions, and I wouldn't have ended up with anything even closely approximating a bag.

Apr 09, 2006

Will you make me a bag? I want one that looks like that new lobster-like creature that was recently discovered at the bottom of the ocean. The furry one.

Apr 09, 2006

I love the candy one, it is very cute. I kind of want to scrapbook it. Which is just weird and proves that I am somewhat insane.

My problem with cute purses is that they are not large enough to carry a hardcover book in (because what if you get trapped in an elevator?) and do not have long straps that will allow the purse to rest on my hip. So I end up with a lot of briefcases. And then get crap for that.

Apr 09, 2006

If I had to make a purse, it would be a pillowcase with a branch for a handle, or something. That's how uncreative I am. But YOU! With the CANDY! And the SNAPPY BITS OF PROSE! Why, it's totally different than what I would expect from a gay cowboy purse, which would involve Bedazzling in some way, I am sure....

Apr 09, 2006

Oooh, I say, did you think up that Brokeback Mountain idea all by yourself? How marvellous and clever!

Apr 09, 2006

Ahem.. lovely/hysterical bag and yeah! for charity. However, I'd like to applaud you for two entirely different reasons:
1) Your comment on Dooce
2) Heather WROTE YOU BACK PERSONALLY! (rabid fangirl here, yes) because why? You brought the funny, big-time! Good for you! I think you should do the Big Love Bookbag (multiple pockets) or the Lost knapsack (in organic materials) for sure!

Apr 09, 2006

Ack, what a frightening post -- apparently I missed a post WHICH WAS DELETED AND IS NOW LOST FOREVER, and furthermore the Gay Cowboy Juggernaut has reared its ugly head again. I can't jump on the Brokeback Mountain bandwagon, just can't, but the bag design IS awesome. But gay! And cowboyish! Good on making money for charity though.

By the way, the Hol-Vac continues to make me very happy. Its crevice tool is a source of great joy to me for disappearing the dust bunnies before my daughter, who is now crawling, can find them and eat them.

Thespian LLibby
Apr 09, 2006

The idea of something called a "crevice tool" is unnerving.

Apr 09, 2006

OMG! HOprah signed the purse? So, that means, SHE TOUCHED IT? OH MY GOD! She really IS just one of us, I mean, she touches purses.

Apr 10, 2006

How ironic that someone who is supposedly a "real" journalist, but somehow wrote about your blog WITHOUT EVEN ASKING, has now left a comment on your blog? Now how hard would it have been for him to do that BEFOREHAND and ASK YOU if it was okay to publish an article about it in a local paper where people you actually work with might read it?

Apr 10, 2006

I love how their silhouettes look like hulking bison. Oh, my God, why hasn't anyone made THAT movie? It could be called "Dogies" or maybe "Longhorned and Vaguely Threatening, Just Like Actual Homosexuals" or perhaps "The Cherokee Uses Every Part of Me".

Apr 10, 2006

Look at you, talented! A budding Lulu Guinness in the works?

Apr 10, 2006

Love the blog, been reading for a couple weeks now. Just wanted to tell you that you make my work day go by so much faster, and that I linked to you over at my blog. Thanks for makin' me laugh!!

Apr 10, 2006

That's brilliant! And way more fun than Lulu or Kate Spade or that ridiculous Hilton child or the handbag making woman from SATC who went nuts at her opening.

Apr 10, 2006

You've gotta sell those things! Here in L.A., you could be a millionaire in a weekend selling those. I do exaggerate, but not by much.