It’s no huge surprise that Andrew McAteer makes his living handcrafting things—as a kid, he hammered and sanded alongside his dad on projects like restoring a classic wooden boat. From there, he carved out a career as a furniture-maker and antique-restorer before a fateful search for slippers to take on a camping trip inspired his fascination with leatherwork. “I couldn’t find what I needed, so I used an old Civil War-era pattern from the Library of Congress and started making them myself,” says Andrew. (It’s what any of us would do, right?).
Spurred on by that first pair of slides, Andrew founded his namesake line in 2013, selling streamlined leather and canvas tool rolls, bags, and key fobs handmade in his Queens studio. True to his origin story, Andrew still looks to museum artifacts for inspiration, most recently falling for Native American baskets at the Museum of Natural History. “The items I make aren’t trying to be clever—they fulfill a function and can last for several centuries because of how well they are made,” he says. We’re going to respectfully disagree with Andrew on one point—these goods still look plenty clever to us. —leah bhabha