These carryall bags were both men's vests, the blue in a cotton and the black in a merino wool. The first is for warm weather; the second for cool days. I use them mostly to transport my fibre arts projects (and they can hold a lot!) but they also work for groceries, trips to the beach, library visits.
The vests were both thrift store finds and the deep armholes and loose necklines suggested the idea of a receptacle.
All that needed to be done was to sew up the bottom, gather the shoulders into handles and secure with decorative stitching, and then embellish.
A pair of child's shorts (thrift store, of course!) were cut apart and became the pockets; the pockets on the shorts are useful for small items as well. I think this would be a neat way of 'preserving' a pair of shorts once a child has outgrown them.
They would have made beautiful pot holders but I thought they would make stunning pockets so they got attached here. I went through my stash and came up with the complementary wool which I knit onto each pot holder (used a blanket stitch on the potholder in embroidery and then picked up stitches in knitting). The same wool got wrapped around and around the shoulders to provide a handle.
I am on the lookout now for handknit vests with deep arm and neck holes that I can 'rescue' and turn into another carryall.
Church sales are starting again after the summer and this is usually a good source for such items with the added appeal of possibly getting the history on the article, like who made it and when, because often the people running the sales know who donated what - or did so themselves! Life is enhanced by such details, such meaning.