When we came up with the idea to develop a project bag we knew Marra needed to be extremely functional, but it had to be very artful too – just like the yarns are in our product range. The Marra project bag has been created by makers for makers so we’ve really thought through every little detail. Read on to find out what makes Marra the perfect bag to hold your next cast on.
What makes Marra the perfect project bag for knitters?
Sized to comfortably fit 400g of yarn, Marra will hold medium sized projects such as shawls and knitted tees nicely. One of the most useful aspects of this bag is the fact that you can easily knit right out of it.
Separate the handle with a quick undoing of the brass knob so your yarn won’t get tangled or knotted around the strap, then fold back the outer part of the bag.
When the inner drawstring is closed your project is protected from the elements (or curious pets!) yet when fully opened up you can work right out of the bag. It’s as if you have the most beautiful yarn bowl to work from.
Sourcing from and Supporting Local Businesses
When we started developing Marra over two years ago, it was important to us that we use locally sourced materials. Firstly, as a greening business, sustainability is deep within our ethos here at The Fibre Co. We believe local production is a big part of the sustainable ecosystem and something we all need to be moving towards for the future of our planet.
Secondly, the British textile industry really is amazing. We found through sourcing the materials for Marra that although so much production has moved offshore, the skills and ability is all still here when you look for it.
Coming from a very wet environment we decided to use a waxed cotton fabric for the outer bag. We were pleased to find a product woven and waxed by a British company with a rich history in producing textiles dating back to 1864. The waxed cotton sat perfectly alongside the stunning lining fabric we had digitally printed on a linen woven in Scotland.
There are some elements of our bag that are not locally produced but they were still thoughtfully considered. For example, the leather look details are a vegan leather. We searched high and low for a leather alternative that wasn’t vinyl. Finally, we discovered a cellulose fibre replacement for leather that is biodegradable and fits the style of the bag beautifully.
We worked with Kim, a local maker who is experienced in cloth and leather bag making as we knew makers would appreciate a beautifully sewn project bag. Kim cuts and sews all the bags in her West Cumbria studio and is technically very skilled. Working with a local business made it easy to give feedback, and work on samples in a very collaborative way.
Raymond Honeyman, Textile Designer
There are wax cotton bags out there that are highly functional at keeping the elements out but none have the beautiful artwork we commissioned for the interior. We think you’ll agree it really sets Marra apart from other project bags.
When it came time to look at how we would put the art in this beautifully designed bag, there was no question that we wanted Raymond Honeyman to be involved. Thankfully he so graciously offered his time and the end result is stunning.
Raymond Honeyman is a celebrated textile designer who has sold his textile designs to many companies including Liberty of London. For the past 20 years, Raymond has been designing for Ehrman Tapestry where he works in an incredibly detailed way. Each stitch is handpainted when working on a tapestry design – that’s 144 dashes of colour per square inch!
Watch the conversation between our Founder, Daphne Marinopoulos, Design Consultant, Maggi Toner-Edgar, and Textile Designer, Raymond Honeyman, to hear Raymond speak about the process of designing for The Fibre Co.
We are just so delighted with Raymond’s contribution to the Marra bag. It’s perfect in every sense.
Colour is so important. It’s the most important thing for a textile designer. No matter how intricate a design is, if you don’t colour it well it will never look good.
– Raymond Honeyman
When it came time to colour the design, Raymond put together a colour palette of 21 shades that would sit with The Fibre Co. yarns. We initially sent Raymond our Cumbria yarn as a jumping off point to inspire the design.
We chose Cumbria as it’s not just the name of a The Fibre Co. yarn line, Cumbria is where we live and work. Much of what we do today is inspired by where we are. From the creation and naming of our yarns and designs to the locations we use for our photoshoots, it’s all inspired by Cumbria. If felt right that the colour palette from our Cumbria range would be the starting point for Raymonds design.
The Marra Project Bag Design and Development
The Marra bag has three key elements that make it the perfect choice for everyday knitters.
- Style – Marra is lovely to carry, even in wet weather you’ll still look chic with this bag when you want to take your knitting with you.
- Function – We spent a lot of time making Marra easy for knitters or crocheters to work from. The project bag transforms, simply, into a yarn bowl with an interior bursting with colour and pattern.
- Protection – It’s important for makers that the Marra bag has an element of protection. The drawstring closure inside the bag keeps your work protected from the rain or even curious pets from getting into your project!
The bag has been through several iterations since Maggi presented us with the first prototype. Kim who we now work with to sew the bags was just as keen as we all were to make sure that we got Marra right. She worked closely with Maggi on every detail until it was just right.
Watch the video conversation between our Founder, Daphne Marinopoulos, Design Consultant, Maggi Toner-Edgar, and Textile Artist, Raymond Honeyman, to hear Maggi share more about the two year process we went through to develop Marra.