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Skinny Vinny Talks Bags

BY jiayi ying 07/10/2012

So-good merch on display at the Skinny Vinny studio.

While working as a product designer in 2008—figuring out how to make electronics look good and work well at once—Vincent Lai noticed that one of our most crucial everyday utilities can prove to be a huge hassle, too. “I’d often see people fumbling with their bags,” he recalls of his commutes to and from Brooklyn. So he made a prototype of his ideal carry—and bloggers and editors went bananas over it. Here, Vincent talks through some of his creations, as well as the hard-hitting requirements you need to make it as a Skinny Vinny brainchild. 

 

 

A rad-ass chair Vincent designed as an undergrad at Carnegie Mellon.

123 skinny vinny
"Its such a beatiful and calming haven and I am addicted to their waterlemon juice at breakfast. They also have Marmite, which I have a weakness for."
of Skinny Vinny

 

 

Speaking of hard-hitting requirements…

“For these totes, there are numerous exterior side pockets for easy access and internal organization pockets where your wallets and keys can go. There are pockets to fit a Kindle or the like, too. The goal is that nothing will get lost in the pile.”

 

 

FYI: These guys are adjustable—see the white clasp on the chambray tie? Mind. Blown.

“About a year and a half into the line, I visited this cutter in the Garment District—he showed me where he kept all of his fabric, and I was like, ‘Woah, you’re going to cut all of these?’ And he said, ‘No, these are cut already—this is all waste.’ So I took it and made the bow ties out of it. You should see us when we’re laying out the patterns on the fabric—we put them as close as possible as we can. And we even use the leftover slivers to tie up our stuff.”

 

 

Showing off the genius design.

“This is one of our newer laptop sleeves. It comes with a handle, so it can be used as a bag too. There are pockets outside if you need your power charger or something. It’s a simple bag—sometimes you just want to have your laptop and not a bunch of other stuff.”

 

 

It’s a tote, it’s a briefcase, it’s a messenger, it’s a backpack…all in one.

“There are four ways to use this bag. You can carry it like a tote. You can button up the leather strap and hold the bag like a briefcase—which is how I usually like it. The third way involves the removable strap: You can hook it on the top two rings, and it can just be a messenger bag. Or, you can make it into a backpack by looping the strap through the top handle—twice for stability—and hook it to the bottom rings. Of course, the strap’s completely adjustable, so you can have it sit higher or lower depending on fit. And, here you go—that’s the Sakhu bag.”

 

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