Tote Couture

Alison Morris - July 31, 2007

In my previous post, I mentioned the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows totebags that Scholastic was giving away this year at BEA, ALA, and San Diego Comic-Con. Made from a material resembling "plasticized paper," they are shiny and bright and a bit more prone to coming apart at their cloth-taped seams than their fabric-made cousins.

Here’s a front, back, and side shot of the bag:


And here on the right of this unflattering photo is me in the skirt I wore to our recent Harry Potter celebration, alongside Elizabeth Wolfson, our summer intern, in an apron you just might recognize:

Look familiar? Yes. As is the case with Elizabeth’s apron, my skirt was once a totebag. Two, actually. I happened to have two Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows totebags that were each coming apart a bit along one seam. Being without wizard garb and in need of festive HP7 launch party apparel, I took the bags apart and reassembled them as a skirt using a whole lotta patience and three magical tools — scissors, self-adhesive Velcro, and black duct tape. During our party, my skirt received numerous compliments, all from people who were shocked to learn it was a totebag in a former (earlier that day) life.

I will give you five words of caution, though, if you’re thinking you’d like to sport one of these little totebag numbers: plasticized paper does NOT breathe. I repeat: it does. NOT. breathe. Fortunately I was able to spend most of our HP7 evening in the relative comfort of our air-conditioned store, but even then, let me tell you, my hips have never been hotter (literally, that is — figuratively, I’m not the best judge of that).

Despite the heat, I wore my hot, hot HP7 skirt until the end of our long but lovely evening. As proof, see the photo of me casting a spell of "orderliness" over our late-night, line-forming crowd in "Image 3" of the great event pictures that ran this week in the Wellesley Townsman.

Unfortunately I didn’t think to take photos of each step of my skirt’s assembly, but I’ll list the steps I followed in my next post and hope they’re sufficient for anyone interested in following them with some plasticky totebags of their own. Perhaps you’ve got one of those plasticky Captain Underpants bags you could adapt and wear, making a VERY entertaining first impression. (Can you imagine seeing someone wearing a skirt boldly emblazoned with the words "TIME FOR NEW UNDERPANTS!"??  The very thought of it sends me into a fit of giggles.)

3 thoughts on “Tote Couture

  1. Robin Lensing

    I’m so jealous that you got a tote bag! When my librarian friend and I finally reached the Scholastic booth at BEA on Saturday monring, we were told that they had already given out 2000 bags and it was only 11 a.m.! But, on the other hand, we got to meet some great authors: Aimee Friedman, Lisa Ann Sandell and Scott Westerfeld!


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