Behind the Bag: Misool tote

For the third installment of our 'Behind the Bag' Journal series, we are exploring the creative process behind one of our best-selling totes - the Misool. Available in two sizes, our Misool is both robust and tactile in equal measure. Designed by our founder, Lorna, to meet her need for a chic, roomy, everyday bag, the spacious internal pockets can hold everything your day requires. We love it for its practicality, and its timeless design, which we update each season with a new colourway.

Handweaving leather in Bali - STELAR - Cafe Creme


Working with locally sourced nappa leather is a considered decision for us as a responsible business. There are many considerations that we take into account when selecting materials to ensure that they align with our values, and support us to make beautiful things of lasting worth. These include; quality, durability, locality, biodegradability, regenerative practices and repurposing methods.

We source the leather for our Misool tote bag from a tannery on the neighbouring island of Java. After extensive research, we chose to work with this tannery in particular as it's a silver-rated member of the Leather Working Group, and committed to organic farming and the ethical treatment of animals. Plus, it only works with leather that's a by-product of the meat industry.

Sustainable farming practices that reduce deforestation and utilise eco-friendly waste disposal systems are also a priority for us and our leather supplier. Our tannery minimises its environmental impact by employing low-water management techniques and a low-level chemical tanning process. These are all essential considerations for us. While we continue to explore alternative leather materials that we hope to introduce in the future, we remain confident that our current supply chain is the most responsible fit for our current needs.Premium nappa leather hide


We hand select only the best premium hides for all our leather items. This means that our leather is buttery soft and tactile, and retains the subtle characteristics of its natural state, such as creases, grains and variations, while providing a medium for expression; we and our incredibly talented artists are able to create something unique and revered.  

Once prepared, our leather is carried to Bali, where it is hand cut into our signature strips by highly skilled craftsmen. These strips are then commissioned to be woven by hand onto customised (and locally crafted) wooden frames to create the durable leather panels that make up our Misool. This intricate style of weaving is known as Bedek, and has been used in Bali for centuries to create utilitarian wares, such as prayer baskets and floor mats.Misool in Bracken for AW22


The large woven-leather panels are then constructed and assembled together by our in-house tailors, into the Misool's roomy and relaxed shape. It is lined in a durable cotton drill that divides into numerous practical, leather-trimmed interior pockets, so your belongings are easily organised. A zip-closure phone-and-key pocket, an internal stud closure and a leather lanyard keep valuables safe and to hand.

Our signature multi-tone cotton jacquard strap adds the finishing, practical touch to the bag, as well as both structure and style to the Misool's timeless design. As always, the final element we add is our gold-tone disc embossed with the item's unique code, which will connect the Misool's future owner directly with the artisan who crafted it.