Interview: Shelter

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Karie Reinertson makes beautiful handcrafted bags under the name of Shelter. I first saw her work on Madesmith and was intrigued to find out more.

How did Shelter begin?
Shelter started in the Green Mountains of Vermont when a couple of generalists got together and wanted to collaborate. Soon after, we moved to Asheville, NC, and have been focusing on canvas and leather bags, alongside home and cabin design/build. My favourite combo!
Do you make everything yourself?
For the most part, yes. When we have larger orders, we work with a worker-owned sewing cooperative here in North Carolina to help with certain aspects of the bags.
What is your favourite part of the making process?
Designing is my favorite part of the process. The transition from idea to tangible piece is an incredibly satisfying process. I also love working with leather. It feels like a collaboration – leather is a beautiful, sturdy, and challenging material to work with and it deserves time and respect.
What materials do you use?
I use the highest quality canvas, waxed canvas, leather, and hardware I can find. I also use ikats and African textiles. I like to mix different patterns and textures together.
Where are you stocked?
Boutiques in the US and abroad, and online through my own web shop. Exclusive collaboration pieces can be found online at Madesmith.
Do you have any exciting plans for the future?
Yes, super exciting plans! Soon I will be offering a collection of one of a kind and bespoke leather inlaid handbags. More on that soon… To follow that journey, please follow us on Instagram at @shelterprotectsyou and @theceremonycollection

Thank you Karie!

Photographs by Jen Altman for Madesmith