Elaine Haag’s first steps toward what has become her signature style felted handbags were a gift of knitting needles and yarn just seven years ago. Elaine took her new toys to a knitting and felting class at a local fine fiber shop, The Yarn Garden, and, as she says, her “needles just keep clicking.” Elaine says the sound of her own needles and the hum of her sewing machine bring happy memories of both her grandmothers, who were prodigious needle workers and she is grateful to continue in an art form she knew in her childhood.
As with many other artists, patterns were a source of more frustration than assistance to Elaine, so she wisely let her artistic instinct guide her to create the one-of-a-kind bags. She starts composing with carefully selected quality yarns, knitting each one-of-a-kind bag – no cookie cutters in this studio. She crafts each lining, usually in brocade or batik, which makes the bag as beautiful on the inside as the outside, and finishes the work with her signature freestyle stitching embellishment, to add beauty and durability.
Because she uses no pattern, each BAGSdeHAAG handbag is unique. The person who carries one of Elaine’s works can be assured they will not see another one quite like it. Elaine says, “I do not rely on sketches, patterns, or sizes. I always rely on my feelings and go with that.”
Elaine will be here, with over fifty other fine artisans, so mark your calendar, today! In the meantime, you can see more of Elaine’s work at http://www.bagsdehaag.com and on the Gallery page of http://www.ybcrafts.org.