When Consuelo Chozas (left) and Paige Smith first met at a pal’s dinner party in Los Angeles, they connected instantly. “At the end of the night, we were practically hugging,” says Paige. One of the things the fast friends talked about during that first encounter—besides their shared background in contemporary art—was the fact that Paige, who was living in San Francisco, couldn’t find a bag that worked for her bike commute—“something I didn’t feel dopey carrying around after work,” she explains.
That dilemma got their wheels turning, and, merging Paige’s design savvy and Consuelo’s knowledge of leather production, they decided that they were the ones to solve the problem, launching the restrained, high-functioning leather goods line Vere Verto in 2013. Since then, Paige has headed down the coast to join Consuelo in L.A., where they produce their label’s boxy, sleek backpacks and unfussy envelope clutches from buttery Spanish leather. As Consuelo explains, “We want a person to have our bag for a long time, to have it get scratches and a patina. It tells how you use it. You tell a story with your bag.” In fact, you might even tell that tale to a future bestie. —jane gauger
BEHIND THE SCENES
It’s totally appropriate to drink a glass of rioja while you read this.
Key to the City Explore the Best Street Art in Downtown L.A. With Vere Verto
Oh, man, there’s a lot of coolness to see.