Thursday, May 29, 2014

Poptabs Purses - Weaving fashion from tiny shiny things

Upcycling can happen with even the tiniest of items.  Today, Rita Wilson of Poptabs Purses shares her fairy tale of creativity and the magic of tossed things.

Poptabs Purses
Now you can keep tabs on your purse

          The Fairy Tale of a Pop tab

“Once upon a time, I kept a cold, refreshing beverage secure in a beautiful, shiny can. One fine day, you pulled me, clinked a hearty ‘prost!’ with your friends, and I was part of the celebration.”
Such is the story of the pop tab who led a fairy tale life… until of course, the can was empty.  Then the shiny pop tab was separated from its can and sent to the dark and frightening recycling center. 
“But one day, Poptab Purses came to the recycling center… and thanks to a crochet hook and sturdy nylon yarn, I am … a beautifully bedecked princess at a ball!”

This real life pop tab fairy tale, written by Rita Wilson, the talent behind Poptabs Purses, and her sister-in-law and editor Brandy Wilson, accompanies every Pop Tabs purse or item.

“Someday, I might go to the big recycling bin in the sky,” the pop tab says, “but having a second chance at life has been great for me, for the planet, and now for you”

It all began three years ago when Rita, who always loved being crafty, took up a friend’s suggestion to make things from pop tabs.

“I took the tabs and some fishing line from my husbands tackle box and made a purse,” Rita said. “I definitely fell in love with it!”

 Since then Rita has built a business making purses out of pop tabs, including a Facebook page with over 8,000 fans, and an Etsy store.  The intricate weaving of colorful nylon yarn and pop tabs is almost chain mail-like in nature, but with an edgy, feminine feel.  Recently her work has expanded to include runway-worthy clothing as well (check back for more photos or go to the Poptabs Facebook Page).

Whether making making purses, painting or knitting, after a busy night working at a hospital, crafts lift Rita’s spirits.  Not only that, but they represent creativity in life.

“[Crafting] is my own world where I can decide and work on my own terms.”

What’s more, what she does supports recycling and reusing.

“Pop tabs are out there whether I make beautiful things or not,” Rita said. “They are definitely a conversation starter and make people think about recycling.”

To learn more about Poptabs Purses and see more of Rita’s upcycled handiwork, check them out online at:

This week's blogroll:

"Art or Garbage: What is Upcycling?"
"'Retrash': Finding Beauty in Lost Things"
"Using trash in artistic gardens"

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