SARAH OLIVER HANDBAGS

ABOUT THE ARTIST 

Sarah Oliver
Mill Valley, California

Sarah Oliver Sarah Oliver is an unconventional artist whose unique handbag designs are born from the time-honored tradition of the knitting circle and guided by her modern and eclectic vision. This stylish line of one-of-a-kind bags is handmade by Sarah, but she has recruited a mighty band of ageless knitters—the residents of Senior Retirement Communities in Northern California—to help her produce a coveted collection of wearable art.

Sarah started designing handbags as gifts for friends and family. The bags received so much attention that she began selling them at trunk shows, in between raising her children, Annie and Will. Soon, stores began to call and Sarah realized there was a business opportunity. But, says Sarah, “I knew I did not want to manufacture overseas. With fond memories of knitting with my mom and grandmother, I decided to approach the Activities Director at The Redwoods Senior Retirement Community, in Northern California, to see if they would post a sign-up sheet for knitters interested in working with me. The response was overwhelmingly positive and I soon found myself with a whole team of amazing knitters, who named themselves The Purlettes+1.”

The Purlettes+1 now hand knit every one of the handbags and they are the backbone of Sarah Oliver Handbags. “They love the work and I love them! I know that this is a unique business model that can do good on so many levels.” As Kay, who recently turned 98 said, “I never dreamed I could be part of something so fun at this stage of my life. I just love Sarah and I love Sarah Oliver Handbags.”

Sarah is inspired every day by The Purlettes+1. Having seen the difference being part of her company makes in their lives, Sarah is committed to empowering seniors by re-engaging them in the American economy. Explains Sarah, “When I think of the potential we have to scale and create opportunity for seniors across the country, I just get so excited imagining the possibilities. I believe we can lead a revolution that gives seniors a new found sense of passion and purpose while building an iconic American brand. Every one of our bags tells a story worth telling!”