Everything from Wantoot is created by an artist in the U.S.A.


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Alison Dryer

  • I have always been fascinated and inspired by vintage fashion. My designs are rooted in that fascination, then modernized. The result is clean lines and softly geometric details with a decidedly feminine form. The combination of vintage or vintage-inspired fabrics and my original handle designs create uniquely beautiful handbags.

    My mother taught me to sew when I was eleven. One 4H award-winning sailor outfit later, I decided that sewing bored me and moved on. After watching a college friend create clothes and costumes with the same set of skills my mother had given me so many years before, I bought my first sewing machine and got to work.
  • A dozen years and two machines later, Alison makes handbags. She designs the handles, which are cut from sheets of wood chosen for their warmth and color, and then sands and finishes each piece with an oil/ varnish mixture. The fabrics she chooses for the body of the bags are vintage when she can find them, or otherwise scavenged ends of drapery and upholstery bolts. She cuts the pieces for each bag following patterns drafted using traditional techniques, and does all the sewing herself, finishing select pieces with vintage buttons.

    Alison scavenges her fabrics from the corners of stores in New York's garment district, thrift stores, her friends' basements, interior design warehouses (you get the idea). Sometimes she can get 15 yards and sometimes only 3, so all of the bags are inherently limited edition (if not two or three of a kind). The options stay fresh for Alison and you. She has great luck finding beautiful buttons to finish her bags. Big, old buttons don't grow on trees, so she doesn't always have many of one kind. She reserves full rights and privileges to choose the button that finishes the bag. You'll love her choice. 
  • When she's not creating her bags, Alison and her husband are proud, active participants in Baltimore's vibrant artist/crafting community. She feels the artist community there is a big reason that great city is getting better all the time. Alison holds a BA in English and Comparative Literature.