Tuesday, April 20, 2010

REVIEW: 3 AM Enchantments Bags

3 AM Enchantments Petite KIP Bag
Where to Find:
3 AM Enchantments

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Search "knitting bag" or "sock project bag" on Etsy and you're sure to come up with hundreds of options. What's the problem, you ask? They all start to look the same, as most are just knock-offs of other knock-offs. Some are those high quality bags that you'll love for years to come, while others... not so much. With all of the choices available, it's tough to tell which you're going to get when you place your order, making all of us much more likely to stick with our tried and true favorites, rather then venturing out on a limb for something new. Well, time to branch out... 3 AM Enchantments bags are that limb you'll want to grab!

When shopping for a project bag, you want something that not only looks good, but is functional and will stand up to the abuse we knitters will surely put it through. After all, we're always on the go (multi-taskers!) and certainly do not have time to fuss over ill-working project bags when we could be stitching!

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Handmade by Keri in Missouri, 3 AM Enchantments bags are beautifully crafted from high quality fabrics. The details are key... each one is lined in a coordinating fabric and everything from the zipper to handle are made to match. If you shop at The Loopy Ewe, you may have already "wish-listed" several 3 AM Enchantments bags, as I had. Much to my surprise, Keri stalked me to find that I had wished for an Earth Batik fabric bag that is no longer available. So she surprised me with a Petite KIP Bag in the gorgeous limited edition Batik fabric you see in these photos... the very last one leftover from a special Loopy Ewe kit! I heart it.

The Petite KIP Bag is the perfect size for a sock-in-progress. However, I'll be the first to admit that looks can be deceiving! Measuring in at just 6" long x 4.5" wide x 4" tall, at first you might think it's too small. That is, until you shove your yarn cake and DPNs (or circular needles) inside!

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The Petite KIP Bag is great for on the go - tuck it inside your tote bag or purse and your sock project will be ready at a moment't notice. My favorite detail is that the zipper is not only the full length of the top, but actually extends over the sides, making it a breeze to get your needles and project in or out. This is definitely my perfect little sock bag.

If the Petite KIP Bag is a bit smaller than you'd prefer, check out it's sister, the KIP Bag which measures 10" long x 3.5" wide x 3.5" tall. Also available is the Emily Lace Bag, a sack style bag that stands up on its own and the new Notions Bag, perfect for all of your favorite tools.

Keri was nice enough to answer a few of my nosey questions... enjoy!

Lapdog Creations: Tell us about 3 AM Enchantments and how you got started. Where did the name come from?

3 AM Enchantments: I started 3 AM Enchantments as a way to pay for my burgeoning yarn habit. I picked up knitting after a bad breakup - the relationship suffered from the Quilt Curse, so I really needed to step away from the cotton fabric and pick up something new for a while. I made up a few sample bags for Sheri (The Loopy Ewe) and the rest is history. The name was born from a brainstorming session with a friend of mine. I was looking for something unique and memorable while being inoffensive. After batting around numerous "maybes," I settled on 3 AM Enchantments because all crafters know that 3 AM is the magic hour for a work in progress - hopefully by implying it is enchanted, I give you a bit of good luck towards having things go well when you are looking at that last minute push!

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Lapdog Creations: Which is your favorite of the 3 AM bag styles? Do you use your own bags?

3 AM Enchantments: I use my own project bags almost exclusively, unless they are all full (then I use a ziploc until I have a chance to make myself a new one, or empty an old one). Making your own bags is a blessing and a curse - I always fall in love with my bags, and want to keep "just one" of each fabric. Combine this with my tendency to cast on new projects just to have something to put in the bags, well it could spell disaster. Thankfully, I managed to get over the impulse to keep "just one" fairly early on, so my own collection is kept at about a dozen bags of various styles. My current favorite is the deluxe notions bag that I have from last year's Tempted @ 3 AM club. I've covered it in buttons with various knitting related (or smart alec) mottos. It makes me happy just to look at it! (This is a fairly new style and was just added for sale this week at The Loopy Ewe!)

Lapdog Creations: How do you choose your fabrics?

3 AM Enchantments: I solicit feedback and theme ideas from my Ravelry group, friends, and Plurk buddies. I am very lucky that my best customer loves to shop for fabric, so I usually have a list to choose from. For myself, I know that I have a comfort zone but I try really hard to extend myself past it. Since partnering with Eric, I have been letting him pick fabrics as well. It's a lot of fun for us to go to a quilt shop because we really are drawn to different things!

Lapdog Creations: You're one crafty chick... you knit, crochet, quilt, and of course, sew. What is your favorite thing to do and why? Do you find that sewing is more 'work' than fun these days?

3 AM Enchantments: My favorite hobby right this moment is knitting, mostly because I am still doing it "just" for fun. This is sure to change as we expand in to yarn as I will have to start knitting samples, which will not be "just" for fun anymore. Sewing can still be fun for me; it really depends on what I am working on. Sewing in 250 zippers is never a good time, but working on a new design or putting the last few seams in to an order can be! I do still sew for myself sometimes, and that is always fun. As soon as the machine is back from the spa, I need to get to work on a set of Christmas stockings for my sister and her family. That will be fun - I just hope I get to deliver them in person to appreciate the reactions!

Lapdog Creations: You mentioned your new partnership with Eric... tell us more!

3 AM Enchantments: I reached the point where I either needed to seriously expand, or get a "real" job. I decided to get a real job, and scale back on the bags. The real job, however, was tantamount to torture for a variety of reasons (first of which is the fact that administering urine analysis tests to federal felons is not "clerical" work on the planet I come from). So in swoops a very good friend of mine, Eric, who decides that I should go big - with his help. Four short months later, I've moved from Missouri (back) to Minnesota and 3 AM has become a partnership. I call him my Cabana Boy, but he's really closer to my fabric cutting slave, Starbucks fetcher and sanity saver. So far everything is going exceedingly well, and we're going to be getting our fingers wet (and probably turning them interesting colors) as we expand in to yarn over the next month or so.

Lapdog Creations: Yarn? Tell us more... please!

3 AM Enchantments: Yes, yarn - and lots of it! We're working on a new bag design as well - the handle is being a bit difficult but I have faith we'll solve the issue within a few weeks. We really have more ideas than there are hours in the day at this point - not a bad thing at all, but mildly frustrating that we can't implement everything at once! In the long, long term, the business goal is to eventually expand into hand crafted wood items as well, as that is where Eric's real passion lies. In the meantime, keep an eye on 3amenchantments.com for more information!

Thank you Keri... we'll be stalking, er, keeping an eye on you too! Can't wait to see what is in store with the yarn division of 3 AM Enchantments!

Lola gives her official sniff-of-approval...

3AMbag_Lola

4 comments:

gaylen said...

looks like a great bag. Makes me leary of starting my own. I'm saying I'm going to, but . . .

Anita said...

Love that bag! And the interview. :)

AllyB said...

That's a super cute bag Nic. Nice interview.

Channon said...

Great interview!