Love and Salvage

Best bag making workshop

I am all over Love and Salvage. This is the future people… be part of it!

Eli, the founder, is one of a growing number of people who have had enough of waste. Even better, not only does she talk about it, she actually does something about it. Enter her brand Love and Salvage – creating durable fashion accessories from waste materials and teaching others the skills to do the same.

She believes that encouraging zero waste and picking up DIY craft skills is a more sustainable pattern of fashion consumption. With a bit of creativity, waste materials can be turned into beautiful new items.

And when she says waste materials, she really means it.

“Whenever I see leather furniture on the street I start to feel anxious. Is someone going to take it, or are the council going to get there first and dump it? Will all that wonderful leather go to waste?! So when I see a leather sofa, I leave it 24 hours for someone to take, then I strip it. Sometimes I get there too late and someone else has stripped it… damn!  This pink chair was a god-send. For at least five days I rode past it sitting there on the canal in the rain. In the end I stripped it. The bags I have made with it are amazing. I love them.”


The salvaged material comes from all sorts of places:

  • stripped from furniture abandoned in the street
  • off-cuts from upholsterers
  • materials that have been ripped out of offices and homes during refurbs and abandoned
  • old leather jackets, skirts, trousers
  • even the linings are made from abandoned upholstery or clothes


Her amazing talent and enthusiasm produces insanely beautiful results, from beginners to more skilled sewers alike. The bags speak for themselves:

Interested in a bag making course? Read on.

  • Eli is based in east London, Hackney
  • There are three courses to choose from:
    • make a clutch
    • make a bucket bag
    • design & make your own bag
  • All three courses are suitable for total beginners – no skills or experience necessary
  • Courses take place in her home
  • They start with students getting to grips with the pros and cons of different leathers
  • Students then make decisions about their chosen design, with Eli supporting them with their ideas, cutting and sewing
  • Expect to learn a lot: from sewing confidence to bag construction… even helping with sourcing materials + Eli offers tips and advice on where to buy tools and machines


Or email Eli on
Workshops take place Mondays – Wednesdays and Saturdays, the next available date is the 17th of April.

You can also follow Love and Salvage on Instagram.