Interview: Edwin Louis London

Rucksacks have had a reinvention to the backbone of the retail scene recently, where it’s not just the festival or school lunch setting that calls for the accessory. Edwin Louis is fast strapping itself as the bohemian elite of bags, and explains why it’s the jam packing trend of the summer. “I think more designers are simply improving an item that’s essential to many of our lives. People have more choice today; they can have the same bag for work and play that equally reflect their look and motive. Designers are doing new things, trying new materials and shapes, and I think that forms a pivotal part of ‘trendy’ fashion.”

The background of these backpacks have a really organic note and thread which adds that natural bohemian colour to the brand, and also differentiates them from the aztec imitations and commercial patterns from the big league retail brands. “I started making backpacks a few years ago now, in 2010. It didn’t start off as a business, but more of a hobby and passion. I’d make bags for friends. The response from people was quite unbelievable, in a good way, as people really seemed to like them. that’s when the brand started.”

The bag shapes are wonderfully adventurous, unique and unconventional, but there’s also practical art to them. “I like there to be a space for everything, whether it be your keys, money, clothes, laptop or work. I like pockets and you’ll see many of my bags have them in abundance.”

With designs so eclectic, it’s easy to assume the craze could only be contained in the city acceptance, but these are eccentric bags with a nod to all walks of life. “I’m based in London and that’s where the bags are made, but I like to think the landscape and person can be anywhere and anyone. The bags are there for the journey, I like to think they are worn on travels that take the owner to and from work, on that last minute holiday into Europe, on their travels through Asia…to that summer festival they’ve been waiting for. I want it to be a silent and loyal member of these moments.”

“I get inspiration for material from taking myself into new environments. I like going to markets, upholstery shops, as you always see something new. I like to work with the bizarre or maybe unknown, mixing materials you wouldn’t immediately think bag worthy.  I once designed a bag after watching the Lion King for example!”

So what’s next for Edwin Louis? “Well we have the new line of day packs coming up which is quite exciting, and I’m trying some new things. But I’m working quite hard on the bespoke service as well, as it’s always something new and exciting to be involved in. Were hoping to start stocking in one or two boutiques around London hopefully, pushing the quality in brand that bit further.”

Words: Charles Matthews