ALBANO: ISAAC REINA
The Paris atelier of Isaac Reina caught me quite by surprise some time ago now. A small scaled and unadorned white interior, visible only through a singular glass doorway, was the foil to an exquisite collection of leather goods designed by Mr. Reina. Since that time the storefront has been remodeled into the most handsome of entrances, a symmetrical pair of curved glass display vitrines framed in gold bronze metalwork. It truly is a façade worthy of the goods inside.
The products include coin pouches, wallets of various sizes, bags, folios and other objects crafted from leather. There are a few items which spring to my mind as totally individual – the desk accessories such as a mouse pad – a utilitarian object that one may come into contact with daily, transformed into the most gorgeous object, in leather. All of Mr. Reina’s products are at once skillfully understated and timeless. They are paired back to their essential elements – a wallet may be a series of origami inspired folds resembling an envelope. They are clever, honest and, more than often than not, imbued with a subtle sense of humour.
News from the atelier itself is that their A4 sized folios with elastic cords are one of the most successful products amongst their customers. I can understand why. Again, an ordinary object reinterpreted in a special material.
Given the amount of travel I seem to do, it is no surprise that I am a huge fan of their glorious “Standard 48 hour bag” pictured here. In the words of Mr. Reina’s assistant the bag is a “modernization of the classic doctor’s bag. Just a zipper, two side pockets that hide the metal catches for holding the strap (if required). It’s quite the faithful travel partner that flattens entirely thanks to a set of well-placed folds. It’s been conceived in the lightest possible way (with no lining, everything sharpened down to its essential, so as not to weigh the bag down on its own)”.
Whilst I do own many of the products from the atelier, that are all aging gracefully with time, I am yet to acquire this bag – I will admit though, that it is on the very the top of my ‘objects of desire’ list!