Is it right to list the first partner in a collaboration announcement as the other party? When it is on your own website? That’s what I asked myself after writing the headline for this my first blog on this site in a very long time. There is no way that putting ourselves first seemed right – I mean, its Comme des Garçons…. An iconic fashion label and the first to have noticed us..
More than ten years ago, in those very early days when we were still kitchen based, I remember vividly the thrill of receiving an email from Comme, Rei Kawakubo had noticed us and was the first person to refer to us as a brand. That’s the way with Cambridge Satchel, we have been blessed by being noticed by all the right people – the first magazine to request a bag for a photoshoot was Vogue Italia (a 13” red satchel), the first person to honor us with the title of brand (as I believe you need to earn that mark, not decide you are one..) Rei Kawakubo, the first newspaper to write about us? The Wall Street Journal. It’s never been the conventional path and I’m so proud of that. Our originality and authenticity have chimed with those for whom such things count.
We made bags for Comme for Fashion Weeks over many seasons, our outrageous fluorescent collection was launched by Dover Street Market after the infamous first sightings at various New York Fashion Week shows. In October 2011 The Huffington Post ran an article titled “CDG X Cambridge Satchel Company: We Are Officially Obsessed”
We worked together on a variation of the satchel, a true reflection of both parents to create a lust worthy capsule
And now it’s time once again, to reunite the brands and I couldn’t be more excited. We have come a long way since last we worked together – I was very proud to welcome Comme to our own factory in Syston, Leicester an incredible place – we walked through the entire production process, from leather inspection, cutting, marking, sewing, riveting, embossing. We spent time with our talented product developers and ideas flowed – so many fantastic possibilities!
The opening collection takes the mini version of our iconic satchel shape, our Mini Satchel with magnetic closure, a top handle and detachable strap, in black (of course), red and pink with contrasting white stitching and joint logos. The collection will be available from Comme des Garçons Girl and was previewed in Paris during Fashion Week in February, then later in Tokyo at the Comme des Garçons showroom.
This time it was our turn to visit – the bags sat alongside bold tartan two pieces, catching the attention of all who visited. The pink mini satchel sat alongside some wonderful Nike collaboration pink trainers. The bags are about to be made as soon as production reopens in our Syston factory, getting the leather and other raw materials in has been a challenge but this is a passion project and we are ready to go.
Comme des Garçons and The Cambridge Satchel Company, it’s good to be back working together – let’s see what incredible product comes from the partnership this time around.
Julie Deane OBE