I always learn something when I attend state Rep. Vicki Barnett's monthly coffee hours. But I didn't expect to find out you can make a purse from empty potato chip bags.
At last Saturday, the Farmington Hills Democrat directed me to Judith Fleck, a Hills resident who was holding the most interesting, brightly colored handbag. Fleck explained to me that she made it by cutting the chip bags and other wrappers into strips, then folding them.
"It's like the chewing gum wrapper chains we made when we were kids," she said. "You stitch them together through the folds."
Fleck started making the bags about a year ago, after a friend came back with one she had purchased in Honduras. After finding the instructions on the Internet, Fleck started folding. She made six of the bags as Christmas gifts.
Believe me when I tell you the photos here don't do the handbag justice. The colors are spectacular. Some of the red accents, Fleck said, came from a poinsettia plant wrapper.
"It probably takes a good 40 hours" to complete a bag, she said. "I just do it while I'm watching TV."
How cool is that?