Over the past several years, it has become evident that Denver is becoming a bit of a “maker” city. In other words, there are countless studios and shops popping up where makers and creatives are doing interesting things – think: craftsman and distillers and tie companies, to name a few.
Perhaps one of the best examples right now is Valentich Bags. And so this week, we are featuring our second installment of the BE Colorado Style campaign, and taking a close look at what Ryan Valentich (yes, another Ryan!) is doing in his studio.
If you’re familiar with our Colorado Style campaign, you’ll know that we gave Ryan the opportunity to design a dress shirt.
I sat down with Ryan earlier in the year to get an idea for how his business began and the thinking behind his BE shirt.
1. [BE] How did Valentich Bags get started? And what prompted you to move out to Colorado?
[Ryan Valentich] I was inspired to make my first bag eight years ago when I found a weathered leather jacket while I was walking my dog in Capitol Hill. The jacket was super 1980s — baggy with big shoulders, but the actual leather still had lots of life and was very pretty. The ski bum life was what brought me here a short time after high school graduation.
2. How would you describe the style of your work?
I honestly couldn’t narrow it down. I like a lot of variety. On one end of our business we make very bicycle specific packs, built with cordura and plastic hardware; on the other hand we make duffles, purses, and man bags built with leather, waxed canvas, and metal hardware. We also make custom chef rolls, bartender bags, and dopp kits.
3. What has been your favorite creation to date?
It’s hard to choose just one, but I’m currently working on a series of carryall’s that I’m really loving.
4. Can you describe your thinking behind the BE shirt that you created?
The BE shirt you made for me is my first piece of tailored clothing. I wanted it to be something that would stand out, but not scream. I incorporate floral prints into a few of the bags we make and out of the hundreds of fabric swatches Ron had for me to choose from, I was immediately drawn to the flowers.
5. What’s the future of Valentich Bags look like? New products?
Flipping sweet! We will be launching our new line in the Fall so be on the lookout!
Valentich Bags is making some amazing products – from bags to chef knife rolls to aprons – and all hand made right here in the Denver area. Check out their online store below to see what they are currently offering.
Contact Ryan here: firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Colorado Style campaign:
Bespoke Edge set out on an adventure during the summer of 2015. Hoping to answer the question, what is Colorado style for men, we interviewed 6 of Colorado’s most innovative creatives and asked them to design a dress shirt – anything that they wanted. This blog post is the second of 6. We will summarize our findings at the very end. Stay tuned.