GLADSTONE LONDON – YOUR MUST-HAVE business travel ACCESSORY
BRITISH MEN’S ACCESSORY BRAND GLADSTONE LONDON OFFER HIGH QUALITY GOODS FOR THE URBAN GENTLEMAN. BEHIYE HASSAN MET THE FOUNDER JOHN O’SULLIVAN AT THEIR FLAGSHIP MAYFAIR STORE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THEIR PRODUCTS.
Premium leather accessory brand, Gladstone London, is targeted at the fashionable urban gentleman. They pride themselves on blending inspiration from lost designs and craftsmanship to create functional long-life products.
In their flagship store in Shepherds Market in Mayfair they offer a bespoke service where they work to customers’ ideas and concepts in addition to their ready to buy totes, backpacks and briefcases.
Their limited edition G4 Briefcase has only 20 in the entire range. “I always look for leathers that are not readily available to everybody else,” says founder John O’Sullivan. He explains that during a visit to a tannery he was flicking through a pile of black leathers when he came across one sheet of brown leather. “All the rest has gone black so I asked where is this from and they said we don't know it belonged to our father so can only assume it's over 30 years old because the business was that old.”
The G4 features Gladstone London’s signature diamond cut lock in brass and plated pewter that O’Sullivan worked on for two years. “I worked on it with Manuela Morin who had been at Bottega Veneta and the lock itself is created by Analdo in Florence, a jeweller who is 82 years old.”
Meanwhile the interiors are made with man-made fabric alcantara, “It's more expensive than ready to buy leather but it has a more sumptuous feel,” he says. “It was used predominately in the 1930s for dining room furniture, if you spill a glass of wine on it, it just wipes off so its very resilient and hardwearing.”
O’Sullivan founded Gladstone London in 2015 after getting inspiration from an elderly couple looking to repair some luggage while working for artisan leather company Tanner Krolle.
“The bag was so unique it was in elephant skin and had a round bottom with a square top so I asked where is it from? To which the man in his eighties replied it had belonged to his mother.”
The bag continued to mesmerise O’Sullivan when he discovered buttoned in lining that he had never come across before. “A retired boy I knew said that's a dirty linen bag from the 1920s, you'd unbutton it and give it to the maid to be washed then when the clothes come back clean they go into the main luggage and this one goes empty.”
This luggage was the inspiration for what is now the iconic G1 bag in the Gladstone collection and in July 2015 they launched exclusively in Harrods. “Harrods loved it and I thought they would say see you next season but they said if you've got the stock we want to launch it straight away.”
Gladstone London released 10 limited edition G1888 bags inspired by the original Gladstone Bag in late January. Clients will be able to choose every detail of their bag, from the leather, lining and hardware colour, down to the finest detail of the stitch colour and the interior configuration.