Dyeing for our waxed canvas bags?

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Dyeing for our waxed canvas bags?

This project is growing everyday. Everyday I meet people that bring something new to the metaphorical table. A tweet from Tez @weareunion (check out their new lookbook) has set cogs in motion for a collaboration in autumn. A posting made on linkedin months ago will blow your socks off when I release the details. Tuesday last week, a sign spotted on a friends commute home means my 4th of July couldn’t get anymore British than a good old country show where I have staked claim to 36m² of grass.

I digress, the beauty of a blog…

What I am trying to say is, you start a project, you develop a product/design you set broad goals, but you don’t always know how you are going to achieve them. You don’t know who you are going to meet, you don’t know what you’ll discover, and this makes these projects so exciting. Today I thought I would focus on one of the biggest components of what we are trying to do. The actual fabric that makes up the bag. The canvas. The waxed cotton canvas…

A few days ago I signed off the colours for summer production, signing off colours is important, yet very very difficult when you don’t have the item in your hand. I manage this by putting my trust into my man on the ground, Musafar, using a combination of trust, emails, photos and of course video. And that is what I was going to explain here, I wanted to talk about the actual process of getting the colour right, how we technically do it… why we wax the fabric, why we do it differently… this was going to be an explanation of what, where, who, how and why. But then this morning happened…

…things can never be fast enough for me; this morning my phone started beeping earlier than usual from an unknown number/company who had been following this website, who knew what I was doing, and they wanted to offer me a solution to all my problems. They offered me to take over production of all my items, to throw in bleep bleep bleep and have it all ready to go in bleep bleep bleep… I was taken aback, I really didn’t know, but then I gathered my senses… this project can’t be replicated in minutes from some photos online, how will they know the story behind the first 100 or so labels where the duck doesn’t have an eye because I sent the wrong PDF. How will they stand there under various lights with a lab dip next to a can of coke…

And it was this, it was this series of messages and phone call that made me want to talk about the bigger picture in the blog today, a bigger picture than how we make our canvas or how we construct a seam. (I’ll do a proper blog about that in the week) I realised it’s not just the imperfections and irregularities of our canvas, that makes bags so personal and unique, it’s not making something at all, it’s not the/a product, it’s all those people behind the scenes that matter, they are the people who have chosen me, or I have chosen them, they are the bigger picture, and in this imperfect world I am sticking with them.

Those phone calls and messages really did feel like I was being tempted and played with by the devil. I politely declined their offers and I realised that another week didn’t matter… a few more weeks didn’t matter. There is always something to do, and I have the luxury of that… so I set about my online web duties… the stuff I always put off… I signed up to builtwith.com – to find out it’s my old flat mates business, and karma man! We all live together, this really is one world.

TL:DR. the biggest decisions are not often the ones about colour.

These are the videos from the dye factory.

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