2016 was a year of big moves and even bigger leaps of faith, and we couldn't be happier with how it all turned out! As we roll headfirst into a new year - we thought we would take a few moments and celebrate all the awesome that came in 2016.
#1: Crystalyn earned a coveted fellowship at the Brooklyn Fashion Design Accelerator, which is a hub for ethical fashion design. In addition to having a dedicated workspace with views of the Manhattan skyline - she will receive up to 3 years business mentorship and will grow her business alongside a powerful community of movers and shakers in the sustainable fashion scene.
#2: We increased our investment by 30% in using the massive resources of Manhattan's garment center, sourcing remnants and off-cuts of high-end materials and fabrics. Because we are a small and efficient company, we can make amazing designs with what other larger manufacturers couldn’t use. This type of upcycling gives us the freedom to experiment with new materials, minimize the impact of the leather industry and reduce climate change.
3. Vegetarian times - we were honored to have our best-selling Metier tote as the the featured bag in Vegetarian Time's roundup of the best vegan bags.
#4 We put our own spin on technology accessories by creating Headphone Tacos. They make life a little easier by keeping your cords tangle-free. Plus, these little beauties are created start to finish using materials found in New York's garment district.
What's not to love?
#5 Our 15 year anniversry! Back in June 2001, we never would have imagined how much our little company would grow - or how many happy customers we would make along the way. Since we got our start in Seattle - we returned to where it all began this summer, and had a big celebration in Seattle Center.
#6 We are fiercely made in USA but did you know that we are bi-coastal? We ramped-up our Seattle production! Since we have such huge following in the Pacific Northwest, we decided to make a batch of Black, Wine, and Butterscotch Metiers with one of our oldest sewing contractors. We couldn't be happier to be reunited with Ute in the heart of Seattle's SoDo neighborhood. And the bags look BEAUTIFUL!
#7 Our love of texture took the front seat this fall. We made a limited edition batch of Metier & cross body bags in Velvet & Tweed!
#8 At long last, we created a backpack that we would be proud to wear. Roomy but not too big, chic but still uber-durable. . .the Amélie backpack
#9: We had a top-secret project thrown our way by our friends at FabScrap: create 10 new accessories using only leather scrap from a shoe factory. . Our bags made an appearance on "Shark Tank-like" Project Runway: Fashion Startup and (*spoiler alert!) these new designs will continue to roll out through 2017!
#10 Holiday Market at Chelsea Market! This year we broke tradition and didn't participate in Seattle's Urban Craft Uprising. Instead, landed a spot in our BIGGEST pop up show yet: Handmade Cavalcade- which is organized by EtsyNY. 5 days of a retail show in a tourist-heavy location was exhilarating! Plus we got interviewed by an up-and-coming new blog. . .but that's all we can say for now. (wink wink)