Saturday, August 27, 2011
Ludwiga's Linens Grainsack Handbags
Ludwiga, a native of Germany (where arguably the most beautiful grainsacks are found,) is the maker of not only stunning handbags, but many other beautiful and useful grainsack items. She is also the "go to" person (in the United States) for any questions you may have about the history and use of grainsacks. Ludwiga has meticulously researched the history of German grainsacks, including visiting museums solely devoted to grainsacks (Deutsches Sack Museum in Nieheim, Germany and Heimatmuseum in Plieningen, Germany.)
There is a great deal of misinformation about grainsacks, much of which Ludwiga has dispelled thanks to her research and ongoing relationships with museum experts. For example, some people will tell you that sacks with tar based inks are the only authentic sacks-not true. In fact, inks used on grainsacks differed both in quality and ingredients due mostly to regional influences. Some people will tell you the color of the stripes (on the sacks) is an indicator of the region where the sack was produced-also a fallacy. In fact, all different colors were used throughout Germany. Some people will tell you the sacks are hand made by the farmers wives-somewhat true, and somewhat false. While some farmers wives made sacks, many farmers purchased finished sacks at mills and took them home, where they applied their own stencil. Unless you have proof of a solid provenance, there is no way to tell which grainsacks were made by the farmers wives and which were purchased at a mill.
The very best way to make sure you are purchasing a genuine product is to know your seller and to ask questions. How did they authenticate the grainsack? What are the criteria they used in the authentication process? If they used an expert, who is the expert and what are their qualifications? If the seller says "I can just tell from years of experience," that's not a good answer. A credible expert, selling a quality product will have done their homework and will share the tangible, specific details that authenticate a grainsack as the genuine article.
Before spending a great deal of money you, the buyer, also need to do your homework. Don't take information at face value, jot down the information you receive from a seller and do your own research, educate yourself about the history and use of grain sacks, crosscheck the information you're given with solid facts, contact experts and museums.
You can contact Ludwiga through her website:
The German museums also have websites: