Today was the first day of the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival here in Hampton, VA. I'm lucky that this big and wonderful quilt show is in my hometown. It's the highlight of my winter. I'm not a quilter, but you know that I like to sew and I love fabric.
This year I discovered something new to me, and it is really fabulous. Laga Handbags. Here is the one that I picked out for myself. It was a hard choice because all their bags are gorgeous.
What is truly unique about these bags, other than the bags themselves, is the story of Laga Handbags.
In their booth I met Louise van Broekhuizen, one of the founders of this company.
"Unlike many people, Roy & Louise van Broekhuizen haven't forgotten about the people who survivided the 2004 earthquake and tsunami that slammed Indonesia. They hope that LAGA Handbags, an extension of their tsunami relief work, will provide hope and a better future for many survivors. All of their handbags are handmade in the tsunami-ravaged province of Aceh, Sumatra, Indonesia where a 9.3 earthquake and subsequent tidal waves took the lives of more than 270,000 people.
"We cannot give them back the loved ones they lost. But we can help the people of Indonesia restore their economy and regain their autonomy."
"We formed Laga Designs International, Inc. to provide employment and income by hiring and training those who lost their livelihood, but what transpired was much, much more: we developed a personal relationship with the local people of
Aceh and left our hearts in their homes."
It was truly a pleasure to meet Louise in person and make my little contribution to the tsunami relief.
The bags are all constructed by hand on treadle straight stitch machines.