We met Cathy Mabry and immediately became enamored with her business and mission. Featuring her on Tools of the Trade was a no-question decision, and we have loved getting to know more about Cathy, her story, and the incredible handcrafted bags she makes.
After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, she began to see herself as God’s favorite purse–“One that God carried everywhere, full of all the wonderful treasures that He needed to get through the day. It was a beautiful purse that just had a smudge of dirt on the outside.” This view of her circumstances gave her incredible strength, and a new-found view of the world. Two years later, and cancer-free she began searching for a way to give back and bring hope into the lives of others.
That’s when Jool Designs began. Cathy taught herself to sew while designing custom handbags. We were absolutely floored to see the care that went into each one–complete with colorful fabrics, perfectly tailored pockets, and insides that were more gorgeous than the outside. In making her bags, she also committed to donating 40% of all the proceeds to worthy charitable organizations. (Which in our eyes, made her bags even more beautiful.)
From purses to satchels, glasses cases to drumstick bags, Jool Designs has continued to expand and grow its impact on the world. We are truly passionate about Cathy’s cause, and couldn’t wait to share it with others.
Check out her new online store to order a custom bag of your own and feel great about giving back or contact Cathy to learn more about scheduling your own purse party for a fun girls night or birthday party!
Now, let’s see the tools that make Jool Designs possible!
1. “Ziggy” — Our Sailrite industrial portable sewing machine. This way we can sew, sew, sew everywhere we go.
2. Upholstery Thread — This literally keeps it all together.
3. Cutting Mat — This is where all of our great patterns are cut out (and not the table).
4. Rotary Blade — For super fast cutting.
5. Ruler — Helps us cut super straight when we are cutting super fast.
6. “Molly Mallet” — Pounds those rivets into place. Also a great stress reliever.
7. Hole Punch — Makes a place for those cute little rivets to go.
8. Rivet Setter — Protects the rivets so we don’t pound them flat.
9. Seam Tape — Holds those crazy zippers in place while we sew them. You can’t imagine how hard they try to get away from us.
10. Super Glue — Yes, super glue. To really secure those spots that need a little extra securing.
11. Mini Clips — Holds the vinyl together while we sew. Also great for holding that half eating bag of M&Ms closed (sometimes we need a little fuel to keep us going–Would that be considered a tool too?)
12. Fabric Scissors — To keep everything neat and trimmed.
13. Vinyl/ Home Decor Material — Tons & tons of colors to make beautiful bags.
14. Beautiful Jool Bag — This is the real tool. We don’t use all of these tools to make a bag. We use them to bring hope to the world. The bags are just a tool to raise money for humanitarian missions around the world.