A big banner year coming for ReSail

Island woman takes sails, canvas, banners and more and transforms them into handmade, fashionable bags.

Organizers for the Taste of Lynwood made a concerted effort to get the word out about the festival this year. An abundance of signs and banners were hung around the island.

But what does one do with old banners once the party is over?

One island woman says to just bag ‘em.

“They asked me to make a bag out of an old banner to give to their sponsors,” said Eileen Nicol who makes bags under the name ReSail.

“They really loved them. Then they gave me all their old banners because they weren’t doing anything with them.”

The bags proved to be as fashionable as they were once informative.

ReSail is a line of bags through Island Canvas Works. The company makes protective covers for boats, cars, homes and more.

Husband and wife team of Tom and Eileen Nicol discovered that at times they could make use of leftover scraps of material for another useful purpose.

“Tom was making bags and giving them away, so all of our friends have bags,” Eileen said. “It was very practical.”

The bags were a hit with friends, so this year Eileen decided to leave her tech job in Seattle to grow the newest branch of the business.

Pretty soon, Island Canvas Works was in the, well, bag.

They make totes, carry-on bags, yoga mat bags, duffels and more.

As the name, “ReSail,” implies, many bags are constructed from the fabric that catches the wind to move sailboats through the water.

“People, when they are done with sails, have a hard time figuring out what to do with them because they are worn out as a sail, but not as fabric,” Tom said. “And it’s a bulletproof material.”

Now islanders can have a chic bag made from recycled materials of banners, sails and more.

“I like to say, reduce, reuse and ReSail,” Eileen said. “We like people to know that if they want to get rid of their banners, we’ll take them and make them a bag.”

“People like things that are handmade on Bainbridge Island,” she added.

ReSail bags can be found locally at the Chandlery on Parfitt Way or at Pretty Stick in the Winslow Mall. They can also be purchased through the Island Canvas Works website at www.islandcanvasworks.com.