Morgann McCoy’s love of sewing started when she was a little girl, growing up in a small town in northern Illinois. McCoy’s grandmother and mother both sewed here and there, creating Halloween costumes and doing small garment repairs. But it wasn’t until she attended Iowa State University where she graduated with a degree in apparel merchandising, design and production that she learned the mastery and skill of pattern-making, draping and making a product from start to finish. She also studied abroad at the London College of Fashion where she learned leather working, and “the seeds were planted to start my own business,” explains McCoy.
She started her A Well Worn Story line in 2013 and her bags, aprons and home goods are classic, durable and polished, yet exude the patina of a piece that you’ve owned forever. And that’s by design, of course.
“My whole goal is to create products that are high quality, get better with time and last a lifetime. [The item will] be ‘well worn,’ but get better with age,” says McCoy, also referencing her business’s name. “I want to encourage people to buy less, but purchase higher-quality items—so I focus on the materials I use and the way I put things together.”
McCoy sources and uses only all-natural materials (waxed canvas, cotton and leather) cuts everything by hand and uses hand tools for finishing. Customers can even personalize their product by choosing from eight canvas colors and three leather colors—so their bag has a bespoke feel. Currently a bag takes about four to six weeks to arrive after it’s ordered, due to high demand. “Everything is made to order, so I do things in small batches, as I don’t want to overproduce anything,” she says.
Customers can buy her bags at The Vault in New Glarus, One-OneThousand in Madison and at her online shop for A Well Worn Story.
“I love pattern-making, measuring, fitting and creating a product that’s actually going to get used and is functional for everyday life,” says McCoy. “I want my things to go with everyone’s wardrobe and be timeless pieces that people want to use all of the time.”
The Lakeshore Living publications are published by Nei-Turner Media Group, a full-service agency located in Lake Geneva, WI. Our publication covers the picturesque Lake Geneva area.
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