In my last column, which will hit newsstands tomorrow in the IBJ (read it, you'll like it) I discuss Anita Hopper's handbag business, which she runs from her adorable home in Irvington. If you've read that already you may want to just skip the sappy part that will ensue and just look at the photos that wouldn't fit on that darn paper page. For those of you who haven't read the column or if you just really like it when I wax poetic about people who remind me of my mom, read on.
Anita, of Refind Originals, makes bags out of leather jackets she finds at thrift stores, or out of leather jackets people send her for use as a custom bag. I cannot resist affordable custom goods, so I had Anita make me a purse. Of course I first asked my mom and close friends if they had anything leather and ugly they could donate to my cause, but I should've known better than to think any of those stylish people would buy and then keep something ugly.
So I coaxed a friend into helping me hunt for something at Goodwill. You know who you are, you trooper. By the way, how does your mom like that Florida mug?
In all my greedy excitement over getting a custom handbag, I didn't consider how personal Anita's job can get. Women send jackets worn by their deceased husbands, people write her heartfelt thank you notes when they receive their bag.
And it makes sense that Anita should get much love out of this business, because she puts so much in. She and I sat in her living room and bonded over handmade accessories, which is why I love my job so, so much.
Here are the before and after shots of the bag that now ably carries my treasured Kate Spade sunnies and well, my life. If you need one too, go here
The Big Peach
2 hours ago