Sasha Barr of The New Year, decided to do something useful with the scrap fabric lying around the studio. Looking at his poor battered electronic devices, he had a breakthrough: Why not make a protective, fashionable case for his iPod? Rounding up the extra bits, he cut them into the appropriate size and gave them some silkscreened love. The main challenge (or learning experience) was the size they were working in. "This project let us experiment with tiny design and intricate sewing," he notes. It was all for the best as he (and his customers) can now protect their iPods in stylish fashion.
Barr and Meagan Hall began making placemats and napkin sets after scribbling on napkins at breakfast. "We used original illustrations and machine-washed and hand-cut materials with screenprinted, machine-sewn, and lovingly folded pieces. It required a lot more ironing than one would think," Barr says. "We started the projects for three reasons: It gives us something to work on during the long winters here in Seattle; it provides the consumer with an option other than throwaway paper products; we took the handmade pledge."