The bricoleur makes a laptop sleeve

When I was in college I took a literature course which discussed the effect of technology on art. I’d been a science and history person, not a literature person, so when it came time to write my term paper I flailed around a little. I ran into this term, which apparently was being used in English lit at the time, of bricolage and the bricoleur. From the French, it literally means, making something out of what you have around, using things for other than their original intended purpose. Lit theorists were using these terms in the metaphorical sense, to describe a piece of literature which doesn’t necessarily use a traditional form, but pulls together bits and pieces and uses them untraditionally to achieve an unexpected effect. I was captured by this idea and used it in my paper – which got a decent but not stellar grade, from what I recall, because my professor didn’t think I’d explored the implications of the idea deeply enough.

Anyway, this long exegesis is all to say that the idea of bricolage has stuck with me, and as much as I wish I were a disciplined sewist, I’m not – I tend to flit around and explore ideas, and get impatient at too much prep work. So maybe I’m a bricoleur sewer, and I’m starting to be OK with that.

The last time I’d been at FabMo I brought home a pre-quilted remnant, finished on both sides. When I was pre-bricoleuring (ha) in my sewing area recently, staring at pieces and patterns and trying to decide what to work on next, it occurred to me that this piece might work well as a laptop cover for my newish laptop. In the end, I had plenty of width but barely enough depth, so it ended up being a simple sleeve. I bound the edge with a strip of quilting cotton pressed and folded like bias tape. I considered several ways to make a velcro closure, or ties, or a loop and button, but for now I’m just going to leave it as this – I’m imagining it’ll rarely get carried on its own this way, but put into a larger bag, so I’ll wait and see if I actually need a closure at all.


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