Camenae's Italian-Made Travel Clutch
The last time I was in the airport, I was struck by the fact that Ziplock bags are more ubiquitous than ever. You see them everywhere, in the security lines for liquids, moms feeding kids PB&J sandwiches from them, my own trailmix for each of us in separate bags (because each of us likes different items in it), and so on. But they rip.
So, I was elated when I won a new Camenae travel clutch from a contest on Sherry Ott's site, Ottsworld.com (thanks, Sherry!). You know Sherry as our Photography Editor, and can see her incredible travel photos each week. I was SO impressed with the Camenae travel clutch that I asked Sherry to put me in contact the creators of Camenae, Jill Walker and Brittany Callard. You should see the incredible bags that Camenae has, far more than just the travel clutch. They've got gorgeous, hand-made Italian bags that just make you want to carry them. But back to travel - the travel clutch is VERY sturdy, with a beautiful leather zipper handle. I just can't wait to head to Ireland and Scotland in a few weeks and try this out.
We were lucky enough to sit down and chat with Jill about Camenae, the Travel Clutch, and more. Here's what she had to say...
WE: Please tell us about Camenae...
JW: CAMENAE is niche Italian luxury handbags + accessories with focus on the individual in terms of functionality, detailing and style.
CAMENAE's authentic and understated luxury items blend traditional Italian craftsmanship with international styling + functionality.
We currently work with clientele from over 25 countries.
As to the history of our name, "the Camenae" date back to Roman mythology, where they were goddesses of springs, in particular, the water nymphs of Venus. They were wise, and sometimes gave prophecies of the future. The Camenae represented the spiritual power of womankind as a divine being, and served as a bridge between the material and spiritual worlds.
WE: Where is CAMENAE made?
JW: CAMENAE is proudly MADE IN ITALY by the finest Italian tanneries, hardware specialists and manufacturers in Tuscany.
WE: What inspired you to start Camenae?
JW: Brittany and I owned an advertising agency on Bond Street, London. When we sold it, we knew we wanted to continue working together and CAMENAE was our brainchild + thus passion.
We traveled extensively in Europe and Asia to research CAMENAE. We were inspired by the Italian craftsmanship and felt compelled to support this tradition, thus creating niche Italian leather bags and accessories. Italy is where the leather accessories market began. For us, a bag made in Italy has unrivalled spirit and character.
WE: What of your products do you recommend for travelers?
JW: The Travel Clutch was made uniquely for Travelers.
Travel can be unpleasant with all of today’s regulations. The Travel Clutch design is multi-faceted. It was made according to FAA TSA flight standard regulations to replace zip lock baggies with a gorgeous + environmentally friendly alternative.
This piece makes us happy - and clearly does others too as it is a sell-out piece. This year we have released it in color: Azure blue; Halo gold; Coral.
We now see men as well as women carrying the CAMENAE Travel Cases daily and in a myriad of ways: At the beach to protect ipods; as travel first aid kit; as a regular clutch displaying pretty beaded purses inside of them; and as daily toiletry cases.
Although the Travel Clutch originally came in black as a uni-sex option, we will design one uniquely for men in 2011.
WE: Who designs your incredibly beautiful products?
JW: We do. Brittany and I are an inseparable team. Although I am the primary Designer and Brittany heads Operations, we consult each other on everything.
Brittany was the first person I met at University. Despite having traveled the world and lived across 3 continents, we live parallel lives and thrive on the professional relationship we’ve built over the past 20 years.
Brittany and I are both American-British citizens and I studied design in Paris. Because of this and CAMENAE being Made In Italy, our styling is mainly European.
WE: Is there anything else you'd like to share with us?
JW: In 2011 CAMENAE will launch a highly stylised, small leather good item which is equally good for travel:
the Pochette Series 5.1: 1 style pochette with 5 different designs from 5 different cities around the world.
It’s a fabulous little piece to take out on its' own or place in another bag. For those who want to travel light yet remain in style, this is the perfect accessory.
WE: Thanks so much, Jill! I love this Travel Clutch and highly recommend Camenae to our readers.
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