September 21, 2016
Founders and design couple Ian Campbell Cole and Felicity Baggett offer a refined collection of seasonal leather accessories via their design led leather brand; Campbell Cole. Proudly based in Nottingham, Campbell Cole’s design and production of simple leather accessories are directed via raw materials and precision processes within in the UK.
The project began during Ian’s time as a designer for a large sportswear brand on a project for a rucksack. Upon numerous visits to varying manufactures, Ian was inspired and equally as intrigued by the types of ongoing UK production methods. Witnessing the design and visual language of traditional leather products highlighted an obvious gap for more a contemporary aesthetic. Feeling increasingly deflated by the commercial constraints of corporate design work, Ian decided to pursue his own personal venture. Having had contact with varying manufacturers, Campbell Cole’s first design took the form of the Simple Card Holder. This piece, alongside others, is representative of the everyday functionality of the brands design approach.
With two collections available each item is simple and sculptural throughout, an aesthetic that certainly caught our attention. The Simple Collection consists of staple pieces intended for everyday use, one of which we are particularly fond of; the Simple Key Wrap (see images below). Beautifully constructed from full grain Italian veg tan leather, each piece is small and functional designed to carry your everyday essentials. Simple in form and made to last, the premium leather develops it’s own natural patina with exposure to continual use. On a larger scale but equally as functional”, the Annex collection is described as “an extension of your home”. This collection consists of a range of bags and carriers for your larger everyday essentials.
Clicked from full grain, Italian veg tan leather, the simple Key Wrap is a functional storage solution for your everyday keys. On arrival, the wrap is beautifully packaged inside a thick brown card envelop. Across the face, the letter-pressed Campbell Cole serif brand name features in fresh satin white ink. On the reverse side, a charming string tie mechanism offers an enjoyably tactile unpacking experience. Wrapped in white tissue paper the Key Wrap is nestled within, ready for attaching your keys. Whilst the shape appears symmetrical, Ian assures that it isn’t.
“The previous design was to be symmetrical but with numerous tweaks it worked better being slightly oblong”.
The pristine lustre of the veg tan leather is only momentary, immediately showing endearing marks and creases from it’s first fold and closure. The stainless steel wire rope has a self tightening snap fit that allows you to simply remove or add keys. In comparison to coomon split rings, this option is far more fingernail friendly. Identical to our leather eyewear cases, the sam browne stud holds it’s contents firmly in place to go into your favoured pocket.
Having been founded only in 2012, Campbell Cole’s admirable collections leave you curious as to what will come next. Young as a brand, young as designers, we can only wait for the duo’s upcoming products. These will undoubtedly embody the clean Campbell Cole form which we adore.
Many thanks to Ian and Felicity for their time.
Campbell Cole Website
NATIVE is a blog series intended to showcase select brands who implement product manufacture here in the UK. Admittedly, not all aspects of every product can be made here, however we are most interested in those that can.
UK production has changed dramatically over the decades. Like every industry, embracing change is vital, not just to survive but to thrive in conjunction with social, economic and technological advancement.
Recognition of businesses, old and new, that implement outright or even partial local production is something we are genuinely passionate about. As designers, it is our belief that people should know more about how, why and where great products are made in the UK.
NATIVE is our way of sharing this information.
"Every contrivance of man, every tool, every instrument, every utensil, every article designed for use, of each and every kind, evolved from very simple beginnings."
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