Wed | Aug 23, 2017

Made in Jamaica : Crafted by love

Published:Sunday | June 11, 2017 | 6:00 AMTickoya Joseph
The leather speaks to Reynolds and dictates the design which is always something gorgeous.
Reynold's designs are chic and unique.
It is said that if you love what you do, you wont work a day in your life, so lets just say that Sabrina Reynolds is enjoying life.
Step in her workshop and depending on her workload, you can walk out your bag in an hour.
Reynolds does not use stencils - each cut cut is done handsfree, resulting in perfection.
Reynold's little trade secret - she boasts that her bags are hand-painted and the paint will never strip or fade.
This piece with its adjustable straps is ready for a casual day out.
Reynolds makes her bags in different shapes and sizes with different textures fitting her customer's personalities.
With her extra pair of eyes, and her trusty Goldie, Reynolds really enjoys what she does.
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What's a Sabrina Reynolds bag? It is pretty much whatever you want as they come in various shapes and sizes. But what makes her designs different?

It is not simply the fact that leather is expensive or that the trimmings and hardware used are carefully chosen to communicate different moods and personalities. It is simply that Sabrina Reynolds is a perfectionist who strives to improve on her craft with each item she makes.

The 40-year-old has always loved the feel, smell, and the look of leather. She was that girl who would turn to watch someone wearing a leather bag walk by. She was also that girl who always found herself looking longingly on the leather arm candies in boutiques and on television. But she simply could not afford them.

 

EXPERIMENT

 

Her fascination led her to experiment, and so with a leap of faith she made her first piece. It was just for her personal use and to her personal style, achieving just what she wanted. She then made another, which was a vast improvement on the first. To her surprise, her experiments were being noticed wherever she went. She was now one of those persons who was turning heads. Reynolds explained how she got goose bumps when persons exclaimed as she told them that she made them herself.

Leaving her corporate job years ago, Reynolds did not think of exploring the business of bag making. She was quite content with operating her nursery as she has an unexplainable love for plants, and this is how she sustains her household. However, with the growing interest in her designs, she decided she would try an even bigger experiment, and so her bags made Christmas lists in 2016.

The creative genius works out of her quiet home surrounded by gorgeous art pieces and antiques. However, she does not draw her inspiration from these. Her method is quite different, from the average persons and it is reflected in the quality of her work. In fact, one cannot help but feel special after getting a piece from Reynolds as like your fingerprint each bag is unique- you will be the only one with that. Reynolds boasts that she does not use stencils or sketches. "I just pick up a piece of leather and it speaks to me," she told Outlook.

A close examination of her bags will make you fall in love with the intricacies and appreciate every snip of her scissors and with the assistance of her ever faithful sewing machine, affectionately called Goldie the end result is a fine work of art - fitting to be a part of major fashion shows across the globe. Having started only a few months ago, Reynolds was elated to be a part of the recently concluded Saint International's Styleweek. Laughing she shared with Outlook the incredible feeling of seeing her designs on stage. Her cheeks turned red as she explained her shock when she saw the host Jerry D and the CEO of Saint, Deiwght Peters take her bags and model them on the runway.

Powered by Google, Reynolds has not received any formal training for her designs. All her tricks of the trade, she gets from watching tutorials and through Internet searches. A far cry for someone who admits that she hated sewing in high school. "I found a simple thing like stringing the machine difficult," she admits. Now, she handles Goldie like a pro and even makes her own clothes catching the eyes of many.

As her bills are paid by her nursery, she hopes to get additional help that will allow her to expand both businesses. The problem however, lies in finding persons as passionate and committed as she is to help her build a brand that is bold, unique and made in Jamaica.