Meet Lisa Priestap, an Erie, PA crafter who upcycles old jeans into pillow covers and tote bags in beautiful geometric patterns!
Lisa started creating these items about three years ago. Her friend was getting rid of their old boat sail, and Lisa gave it new life by using it to create tote bags. They sold like crazy! When she ran out of material, she decided to switch to using jeans. Used jeans are never in short supply, so she can sew to her heart’s content (while also doing her part to help reduce the landfills!).
Lisa has always loved sewing – it’s in her blood. Her grandparents were a tailor and a seamstress, and they passed their love of sewing onto her.
She has a hard time choosing her favorite thing to make – because it changes all the time. She loves doing pillow covers in different designs, pocket purses (made from old jean pockets), and her current favorite is bags made from old jean waistbands.
Lisa sells both in person and online. In person, she sells at craft shows, where her most popular products are bags and purses. Online, on her Etsy shop, she sells mostly pillow covers.
When looking for new ideas, Lisa likes to browse the internet and see what’s new and in-style. Then, she puts her own twist on it by changing the colors or pattern. Her biggest challenge with creating new items is that the colors depend on the used jeans that she can find.
She has some exciting new products coming up, including hand-painted items like wine bags and Christmas stockings! Personally, I’m excited for the Erie lighthouse-themed wine bags which she is planning to have at her next show!