Georgia Jay Turns Off-Cuts into Playful Bags
New Zealand-based designer Georgia Davison first began working with leather in 2012. She tells Australian online city guide, Broadsheet: “I remember getting a leather pillowcase from a fair, and [making] myself a funny little bag. I got so many compliments on it for as long as I wore it.”
Along with her sister Ruby, Davison produces everything in an open-plan studio in Auckland using materials from around New Zealand and Australia. “Eighty per cent of our leather is dead stock,” Davison says, meaning she uses end-of-line leathers, mostly from fashion houses that don’t have a use for it anymore. “Some leather I use has been at the suppliers since the ‘90s, and it’s covered in dust. So it’s really nice to be able to use these materials.”
Davison tells Broadsheet’s Stephanie Vigilante about how she taught herself how to best use the material and experimenting with making bags. “I never had a deliberate intention to launch a brand as such, or even turn it into a business,” she says. “When you’re an innately creative person who makes your work by hand, it’s very personal to you. That work then somehow becomes your business – and that is a whole new process in itself.”
Davison began making accessories for friends and family, and officially launched her label Georgia Jay in 2015.
The colours, textures and patterns Davison picks up in the off-cuts set the tone and feel for each Georgia Jay collection. The sisters hand-cut every hide, and because of the nature of the materials only produce very limited runs and one-off pieces.
“We like to play with seam lines, which give each style a little more personality. Whether that’s an asymmetric dart within the body, or graduated seams, or tuck pleats to create volume,” Davison says. “Little fine refinements and details [like that].”
Original article by Stephanie Vigilante, Broadsheet, July 15, 2019.
Photo by Georgia Jay.