Discover Benelux | Dutch Design | Made in the Netherlands
Versatile, classic and beautifully made TEXT: CATHY VAN KLAVEREN | PHOTOS: GIESE LEATHER PRODUCTS
A good handbag is an absolute essential for most women, especially one that is versatile yet classic. This is exactly what Giese Leather Products has in mind with a stunning collection of bags. Giese Janssen is so passionate about handbags that she went to school to learn the craft. Having graduated recently, she branded her name and launched her own label on 1 November last year. The creative turned her home into an atelier where she designs and manufactures her own line herself. “The investment was all worth it. Every day, I enjoy what I do,” she smiles. Customers are always welcome to visit the atelier. “To learn more about the products and the way they’re made.” Growing up, Janssen loved handbags and working with her hands. “I always had an interest in making things myself. I eventually had to decide during my education what to specialise in. For me, the obvious way to go was making bags.” A decision she has not once regretted.
Because the bags are not made in bulk, customers are sure to have a unique product. The collection varies from a larger type of robust tote, a clutch, a medium bag and as of recently a mini bag. Janssen also makes a complementary wallet to fit inside your bag. “I like black and grey, but I love it when I see someone with a popping colour. My ambitions will always be to add more colours and renew designs.”
Handbags to fall in love with What started out as a one-of-a-kind backpack for her son, turned out to become a thriving brand for women’s handbags. Such is the luck of Dutch designer Sylvia Krens who operates her handbag line, Hi-di-hi, in the city of Maassluis. The designs are sold wholesale, in her store and online. Syvia Krens is a woman of the world, with her accomplishments including graduating as a graphic designer and illustrator, evening classes in marketing, attending a fashion academy and spending years of travelling and painting on top of that. But it was a simple request by her son that kick-started her career in handbags. “He has a fascination for superheroes and drew a picture of a backpack with a hoodie attached to it. When I made it for him, all the kids at school wanted the same one. Things took off from there, I got in touch with an entrepreneur who owns a factory in China and I decided to exclusively design women’s handbags,” she smiles. 32 | Issue 51 | March 2018
Having to rely on a factory in China, Krens ensures her products are fairly made. “That took some time, but I don’t want to do anything that goes against my morals.” The end result for Krens is a line of handbags that are quite quirky, eschewing the traditional shades of grey and opting for a more colourful palette. “They’re season-inspired colours, not bound by trends and easy to fall in love with. Just like the backpack for my son, if it’s loved and talked about, I’d say ‘mission accomplished’.”
Instagram: @giese.leather.products View and shop the entire collection via www.gieseleatherproducts.com
TEXT: BAS VAN DUREN | PHOTOS: HI-DI-HI
Web: www.hi-di-hi.nl | www.noi-noi.nl
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