Fringed Hunting Bag by Shelly Gier and Hand-Woven Strap by Kerry MasarikKatie Horn
For your next trip to the range or the woods, artists Shelly Gier and Kerry Masarik have teamed up to create a well-made and historically appropriate hunting bag that’s been donated to this year’s CLF Live Fundraising Auction.
Gier describes her hunting bag as inspired by early 19th century styling “with a bit of working-class western influence.” The body of the bag is made from vegetable tanned cowhide which is lined with goat leather. The bag features an exterior gusseted pocket as well as an additional pocket on the interior. For water resistance, the bag has been treated with black bear oil. It’s consequently a utilitarian bag but features tasteful and complementary design elements contributed by both artists.
Gier explains that the bag’s color scheme was intended to coordinate with Masarik’s strap. “The pouch is deliberately related to the strap,” explains Gier, “I used the ‘goose eye’ diamond design of the strap in the shape of the pouch and flap.” Much of the design of this piece, says the artist, was designed to showcase Masarik’s work. “I wanted the design of the strap to stand out,” explains Gier.
Masarik’s hand-woven strap is, indeed, immediately noticeable and integral to the success of this piece. The strap was made from a contrasting blend of hemp and wool; the wool, in fact, was sourced from a Romney sheep fleece and hand processed and hand spun by Masarik. In weaving the strap, Masarik utilized an intricate and historically accurate “goose eye” diamond motif. The artist puts a good bit of effort into the historic study of her craft, examining original examples, weave structure, and yarns. The “goose eye” pattern, she explains, “was a pretty popular weave amongst tweed weavers.”
This stellar hunting bag is accompanied with a curious bonus: a single buckeye. Gier, appropriately enough a native Ohioan, explains the history behind the tradition. “Many original pouches,” she says, “are shown with their original contents, and buckeyes frequently show up. Whether it is for luck or a home remedy for arthritis, buckeyes and bags go together.”
For more information on the work of the artists, contact:
Shelly Gier: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kerry Masarik: email@example.com
Text by Joshua Shepherd
Photography by David Wright