Beautiful tote made from recycled operating theatre material.

Coming from Cuba, I grow up surrounded of reused, mended  and repurposed items. Sometimes your imagination will play you tricks as you think this material may work for that , and you may go all the way until the final results is a miss, but most of the time the results are awesome.

I remember in my secondary school years, we started a show during the compulsory 45 days of work in the orange plantations of Ceballos. I was performing as Farah Maria, one of the most talented and beautiful cuban singers of all times. I remember the song goes like …. «yo no me baño en el malecón «… por qué?.. porque en el agua hay un Tiburón … jajaja ( I don’t swim in the malecón (iconic cuban waterfront in Havana) why? Because there is a shark in the water.. so during the performance I danced and moved like Farah. Imitating her.

For one of my performance my aunt, a very good seamstress, make me this outfit, she repurpose a white old linen sheet and added red ribbon. The ruffles were in fashion at the time and also is a traditional cuban dress look. I remembered how short the skirt was in front, I was holding the back to cover myself , like in the picture, for the entire night. But I loved the hat, full of colourful tropical fruits and I also liked the assorted traditional neckless  also handcrafted by myself using seeds; The entire look make me feel cuban, like my idol at the time, the beautiful Farah. That was exactly in 1981.


But I just  went off topic..

Working in the operating theatres we see lot of waste every day. One of my colleagues, a recovery room nurse, rescued some blue paper sheets, the ones used to cover the sterile sets and surgeons gown , it is a sort of woven waterproof  paper. She cut it in strips, then she knitted the strips into a mat.

When I saw how beautiful is was coming out, I told her I can transform her new mat like piece into a tote bag.

She was delighted and proceeded more enthusiastically to achieve a larger piece.

So here is my version of the recycled theatre paper tote just in time for the hot African summer. It can be used as a beach or swimming pool tote or to carried your stuff to picnic with your partner or your best friend.

IMG_0723IMG_0727I just added a dark blue cotton lining, a front pocket that close with a magnetic snap for quick access to car keys and phone. For closure I use an oversized button and elastic band. The handles are webbing of matching colour and I added 4 silver bag feet. It was a quick sew that I completed in a free afternoon.

Until next time..