TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) A Tempe-based fashion project is turning old military uniforms into new bags, with some of the proceeds going to area veterans' organizations.
SoulCare in Surplus is the brain child of Jessica Zaneis, who says she wanted to find a way to reuse the old garments while still preserving their stories.
She says the project started close to home.
"My dad pulled out one of his old field jackets, and the material was just out of this world," Zaneis said.
Now that uniform has been transformed, along with uniforms from different military branches and eras. One of the uniforms used to create the bags even dates to World War One.
"We're using family heirlooms," Zaneis said.
Most bags include a QR code which links to the material's story online.
"Every day I learn an entire new library of information. Not just about my own family, but our history as a country," Zaneis said.
The line of messenger-style bags will be unveiled in a fashion show on Thursday, Nov. 29, at FABRIC in Tempe. The show starts at 6:45 and tickets are $10.
All proceeds from the show and 25 percent of bag sales will go toward local organizations helping veterans, and toward getting veterans’ stories entered into the Library of Congress.
This mission began to materialize last April after a serendipitous morning grocery run that allowed Jes the founder to express what she had in mind to someone she knew would be receptive to it, that someone who could also help bring it to life... more ⤵️https://t.co/w8YDpp6u1z pic.twitter.com/t8CtsxDl0L— SoulCareInSurplus (@in_surplus) November 23, 2018
This is the talented and extremely sweet lady named Ida who is our head seamstress. She is a magician with her skills! Each piece we are making takes a minimum of 10 hours of labor. This is 100% wool from the ‘Ike Jackets’.We can wait to show you the transformation! pic.twitter.com/eKWuFlSXVA— SoulCareInSurplus (@in_surplus) November 17, 2018