DEBBY SAKSEWSKI & DEB LAWRENCE - BEAR DEN HANDMADE
Inspired by Pearl Schlueter (mom and grandma), Debby and her mom Deb started making bags and purses. Pearl was an exceptional seamstress; she worked for Coats & Clark, tailoring men's wear and ready to wear garments, and made Deb and her brother and siblings their clothes.
I have always enjoyed sewing; I initially went to WMU to major in textile design and took several classes before changing my major to business. When my husband and I moved back to Leelanau, I started sewing more and more. My mom, Deb, was interested in learning in her mom's craft - so I started to teach her what I knew. We have so much fun picking out fabrics and coming up with new patterns and fabric combinations. This is a great way we connect and have fun together. My happy place is behind my sewing machine.
My favorite line of purses are our waxed canvas totes. We blend our own wax and wax our own canvas. My dad showed an interest in learning how to wax canvas, so we wax the canvas together; it is a great time to connect and spend time with family.