(Belated) Christmas gift – red leather handbag

We were supposed to meet up with my friend (and former bridesmaid!) Pip and her boyfriend back in mid-December to celebrate Christmas, but we had to reschedule due to my swine flu, so I’m only just now able to show you her present – a Nairobi bag made up in gorgeously soft red wine leather, bought in NYC from Global Leathers (I find it interesting that Americans would call this colour “burgundy”, whereas in the UK it’d be “claret”).

I sewed this up before Christmas (so you saw a sneak peek in my 2010 roundup), but she asked me to hold off posting about it until she received it. I actually made this same bag for her a few years ago in black corduroy, and she famously texted me later that night exclaiming “I can fit a whole bottle of vodka in here!”

When I made the Nairobi bag for myself, I usually leave out the strip that joins the two halves together as I find the bag is just too big for my liking with it in, but Pip asked me for the bigger size, and bigger she got!

This leather is just SO gorgeously soft – it’s the priciest of all the leathers I bought in NYC, but it is by far the nicest I’ve ever felt – honestly, it’s as soft as silk charmeuse… (and I’ve got most of a hide leftover!)

I bought the steel-coloured metal rings at Botani while I was in NYC shopping with Nancy K and Lindsay T in September, so this really is a New York handbag through and through!

Pip only wanted a few pockets in the lining, but specifically asked for pockets for her phone and Oystercard, which I was happy to oblige. The lining is actually the reverse side of the red polyester tie “silk” I used for James’s fantasy jacket. The darker, “wrong” side just looked better with the dark leather rather than the brighter, shinier red I used on his jacket, though.

For my gift, she got me 2m of Ditto’s amazing bamboo/lycra jersey in cherry red, and another metre of some stunning purple lace, but I’ve got some other Ditto goodies to show off from our Brighton trip last weekend. Their website photos just don’t do them justice, though, so stay tuned for some luscious midwinter restashing photos….

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