By Rich Kane
By Joel Beers
By LP Hastings
By Dave Barton
By Patrice Wirth Marsters
By Erin DeWitt
By Taylor Hamby
By LP Hastings
The notion of a purse made from woven-together seat belts is such a natural idea that it really makes you want to hate Dana and Melanie Harvey for stumbling on the idea nine years ago while restoring their 1950 Buick, and for building it into a strapping (sorry) little concern in downtown Santa Ana.
Except that it had to come from a happy coincidence like this, and you're too lazy. Modern seat belts are all that wretched shade of grayish black—and they have been since gas was $2 a gallon. Discovering their variegated past—that seat belts once came in colors: rich reds, blues, greens, even a nice tan—had to happen to someone like the Harveys, who discovered it while dismantling their behemoth.
Seat belts used to be really cool, and now they are again. Boxy, carryall purses seem so uplifting when they're made from a series of intertwined pink straps. The Harveys' baguette purse—a skinny black loaf—is somehow genius despite the fact that everyone's done this shape. It's the belts.
And, after years of trying, they've finally figured out how to screen-print on seat belts—the results being their new series of camo purses: green straps printed with tan, brown and black bugs. Ewww!
In the right light, that Department of Transportation-approved synthetic fiber makes them actually glow.