We have always been impressed with the beautiful photography of Ian Pratt’s work done by his wife Maryellen. What a pleasant surprise to learn that her latest creative work involves recreating the hunting pouch. We recently received a number of Maryellen’s photos of some fine little pouches done by her. Not only was the photography first rate, but so were the pouches. Maryellen creates the pouches, she and Ian forge the strap buckles, Ian supplies the vent picks and measures and Tim Crosby furnishes the horns. The pouches are well constructed and are aged enough to look and feel as though they have been around for awhile. They already have the look of the originals and she is just getting started! It’s hard to believe that this new artisan is self taught.
One pouch in particular caught my eye. It is sewn from pigskin and measures approximately six and one half inches square. The pouch is unlined as were most of the originals. The bag straps are a full one and a half inches wide which makes for a comfortable carry. A hand forged buckle looks so right on the strap. A patch knife done by Ian is attached to the strap and to the bag as well. The knife’s overall length is eight inches, the blade is four and one half inches. The handle is bone with a pewter ferrule. The knife is aged. The vent pick and measure are also by Ian. The little banded horn was made by Tim Crosby. It has four rings, a beautifully turned plug and a pewter spout. A really first rate piece of work. This particular pouch would be a perfect companion for a little squirrel rifle. In fact it works well with a little Tennessee rifle sitting in the corner that was built by Jack DuPrey.
Maryellen’s pouches are constructed using a range of leathers. At present she is using bark tan by Charlie Brown and other leather procured at this year’s CLA Show. They are sewn with linen thread. Her patterns relate closely to the originals in the books by Madison Grant and Jim Webb.
Not surprisingly all the pouches sold rather quickly. Could this be an indication of just how good they are? We eagerly look forward to seeing the next group of bags and we will be featuring more of Maryellen’s work in the future.
Copy by Art Riser with photos by Jan Riser.