Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Our Holiday Season Events


Our Holiday Season Events

41st Annual Circle Craft Christmas Market

November 11th – 16th, Vancouver Convention Centre West
For more info and tickets – circlecraft.net

Christmas at Hycroft

November 20th – 23rd, Hycroft Mansion, 1489 McRae Avenue, Vancouver
All info here.

Also – shop online at jolavdesigns.com

This post now concludes our blog posting on this platform.
We hope you will stay in touch at the Jola V. Blog's new home, http://jolavblog.tumblr.com/.
Whilst we will be tuning in here to read our favourite blogs we've subscribed to, all the news and updates from us will now be found at the new address only.

JVD would like to thank all those who read, commented and enjoyed this blog; and participated in this stage of the growth of our handmade business.

Much love - J. and team

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Last and Final - Renata in Putty

That is the thing with the rescued leather - you find it, you love it, and then it is all used up. 

Putty, the unfinished, velvety and bare upholstery find was one of those. Quite a number of our shoppers walked away with a version of this bag - Renata in Putty. It has been one of your favourites of the past couple of seasons.

I am curious where will the last and final one of its finish will end up...

And then, just like many a time, after discovering a true 'hit' finish, we move onto more searching/ sourcing/ rescuing in hopes to find more things we - and you - will love..

**This is the second-last post on this blog platform, before we permanently migrate to http://jolavblog.tumblr.com/

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Fall Winter 2014 “Ahto” Collection reveal

With the Fall season beautifully setting in here, in the Pacific North West, it is time to show off our full Fall/ Winter 2014 Ahto Collection.

Collection marks 8 years since the designer Jolanta Va, arrived in Canada and eventually decided to settle (title “Ahto”, means Middle Dutch for Eight).
It portrays Bohemia, Returning to Basics, through humble, timeless shapes and minimalist aesthetics, representing renewal and clean slate. The designer re-imagined simplicity through a vagabond’s perspective, inspired by her quest to find a place she belongs.
Ahto features a selection of 5 new handbag styles, built of leather, including BC grown/ tanned bison and elk, giving it a Canadian edge; as well as recycled vintage garment and upholstery.
Here are the designs:
Pouchey - a slouchy bucket cross-body, which converts to a tote;
Festivalette - a small, sleek cross-body or waist bag;
Dreamer - Lightweight cross-body or shoulder bag with our signature pleat detail. Mostly OOAK.
Bastra - large, cushion shaped cross-body, built from BC sourced and tanned Bison leather.
Bastra Tote - large Bison leather tote, that switches to a cross-body. Limited run piece.
here we are - all 5 new designs. These, and our Permanent styles, along with those from the previous collections, are now online at the Webshop.

Our posts are transitioning to the new location of the Jola V. Blog.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Announcing a move

This blog is moving!

After almost 4 years on Blogger, we're moving on! We had a great start here, but now we're ready to switch to a domain, which suits our today's technical needs, and could be better integrated  with the rest of our social media.

Find us in our new location, starting today: http://jolavblog.tumblr.com/

Our posts, Instagram images, and event announcements will be landing at our new and refreshed Jola V. Blog.We will update both locations simultaneously for several more postings,but then, this one will be phased out afterwards.

We hope to see you all on Tumblr.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Sunday, July 27, 2014

North Shore News Features Pouchey Bag

Our Pouchey design has been featured in the North Shore News, a local weekly for North and West Vancouver, as a part of an article about vendors of the upcoming Harmony Arts Festival, where we will be debuting our new Fall/ Winter 2014 Collection this year.

Full article here.

After a great weekend at Circle Craft Summer Market, this press coverage is such a boost. Thanks, Universe...

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Trends Magazine For Canadian Fashion Retailers features our Quilchena Backpack

Our Quilchena backpack (SS13 Cruise collection) - has been included in this Accessories Trend Forecasting article for the upcoming fall, by Trends Magazine along with several other fashion forward Canadian labels. 

We are very pleased to have this design recognized, considering it was created nearly two years ago....
By the way - we are working on a backpack design currently.

And, just a reminder, our new Fall/ Winter 2014 Collection makes its public debut tomorrow in Vancouver.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Our new Fall/ Winter 2014 Collection debuts in Vancouver this Summer

It is getting so close to our on-line launch! We just have the Summer show season to breeze through...
Quite a few of you already own our all new FW14 styles, but the full collection will be debuting, starting next weekend, at the following events:

Circle Craft Summer Market - Jack Poole Plaza, Vancouver
Harmony Arts Festival -- Argyle Avenue at 15th Street, West Vancouver

Also - to all three weekends: wear and show off your JVD armcandy and get 15% off of your next purchase (this discount offer excludes single section Featherlights and Keychains)

Don't have our bag yet? - Tag us on Instagram: @jolavdesigns #LoveJolaV - and 15% off is yours.

**We will also have an August trunkshow at a new venue - check back for the dates**

xo - j

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Friday, June 20, 2014

... and this is why here is the best place ever...

After a few intense days it is plain wonderful to return to the studio - and work. Here, the ever-present scent of tea helps to concentrate, the light beams through windows and the sound of the sewing machine sets the rhythm for the day...

The 'ready' racks

More ready goodies

Rooftops below

The needle, that threads...

Exciting day of arrivals

Studio tea/ espresso

We're slowly working our way to stock up a number of festival weekends this summer.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Thursday, June 5, 2014

A brief FW'14 collection video

Here is a few seconds long slide-over view of our upcoming FW'14 collection:

(Instagram video)

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Quick Recap

The past few weeks have been busy.

As usual, when we take time to travel (yes, travel) there are things to catch up on afterwards. Feels like the month of April was just here, but it was the one month that packed in two trips, a press feature (previous post), which resulted in some backlog of orders, followed by a rush to send out wholesale supply, and get ready for the creation of the Spring 2015 LookBook.

Working with a wholesale agency completely changed the way we do things at JVD. The deadlines are no longer loosy-goosey, the decisions on colour selection for each design have to happen early, and overall, things need to be ready. Done. Early. Nearly a year ahead of the targeted season.

Also, this Summer we’re planning to show at a number of festivals, where you will be able to get the first look at the complete FW’14 Collection, stock of which we’ve also been building these past number of weeks.

But first, the travel in April...

We once again hit the road to Edmonton for the 2nd Spring show, and it was great. We’re thankful to fans, new customers, sale customers, and all who came and supported. The Sarah bags were the shoppers’ choice once again, but we also got great response on the new, unreleased Bison leather pieces. We had our best Alberta showing to date. Here are some snapshots of the trip, and the show.

 With only a one day break – because, 1 day is enough – our designer was off to the Old Country for a long overdue break and family visit. And, apparently, was greeted with early summer weather, full on patio season, great shopping and some much needed time with friends and a t home. A week and a half flew in, what seemed, a few short moments. Here are some of the many photo highlights brought back by J.

Cloudless sky and white walls...

A defense wall is your back yard...



Sakura blooms

Traveler's outfit

Uncovered bricks



The queen of sandwich boards

And the bunny of sandwich boards

Old and beautiful

Amazing Gothic ensemble of St. Anne's

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com/

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Vancouver Sun and Canada.com feature our new FW'14 design!

Pouchey bag (Mushroom)
More early press for our FW'14 Collection!
Vancouver Sun, a local daily newsprint featured our not-yet-released design, Pouchey in their weekly FabFive picks as one of their selected bucket bags. We love it being called a "closet staple" accompanied by such a lovely description of both, our leather and design.

The story then has been picked up by Canada.com website for the rest of the country. Read the beautifully formatted on-line version of the article here.

The full FW'14 collection will make its first appearances this Summer (stay tuned for our Summer events and markets), and several early styles have already landed at Dream Boutique and Bird On The Wire Creations in Vancouver.

Thank you for the love, inquiries and orders directed at Pouchey following this feature. It means so incredibly much to us!

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Our (lively) Instagram feed

Ever since we started working with a new wholesale agency, we MUST discipline our work to adhere to their selling schedules, where Fall collections are re-presented in Spring, and the Spring collections hit the tradeshow floors in late Summer.

So, now, before our FW'14 is even released, we are probing ideas for... SS'15.
Yes, another Spring collection for this not-particularly-springy line..

Some early explorations of Bison leather for SS'15 are on our Instagram feed, http://instagram.com/jolavdesigns

New and simple

Making large cuts

New zipper satchel

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The "What's in your bag?" question

Apparently, it is quite a movement!
What is inside our bags says a lot about us, our habits, priorities and lifestyles. And, because those details are private, they are also an object of curiosity. What hides inside a bag, and why?

Something about those contents have people admit, that they feel "lost" or "naked" without their bag, and forgetting even a small part of the contents at home, can really alter - or even spoil - one's day.

Eventually, folks started sharing their (edited) holdings of their bags, and soon, venues feeding these curiosities popped up everywhere from the Internet, to Print,- groups, forums, magazines and sole interviews, all dedicated to the "What's in your bag?" topic. It is becoming a type of a secondary 'selfie' - an edited, in many cases, prettied up insight in our private lifestyles. We're focusing on showcasing the cool items and things about us, while leaving out the grungy ones to remain unseen. We're showcasing a bit of 'our world' through a cool lens. What's more fun?

Also, many communities found these incredibly helpful, and began learning from each other, from packing, to problem solving. All thanks to the contents of their peers' bags...

Here are some of the curious venues:

Haute Handbags features a section of "What's in your bag?" and asks the readers to share, and prints the chosen selection

This photo community collects crowd-sourced photos of WIYB?

An online page, featuring pictures and mini-interviews with WIYB contributors:

And a humorous look at what's really in your bag? through the eyes of a cartoonist, showing the items, that usually get left out of the spotlight.

Top of the page: J's day bag:

the bag: JVD Marife tote
contents: "goodies I do not leave home without": wallet, amber mirror & note book given by mom, my biz cards, jvd pen, lipsticks, some leather samples & the trusted device which took this pic. #inMyBag #bags #secrets

Do you have a line-up of items, that make the life easier? -


Saturday, March 8, 2014

Early press for FW'14 - West Coast Style

West Coast Style is the first venue to feature a sneak-peek of our upcoming FW'14 Collection -- but, in the concept of the Spring season! 

In this interview with the Fashion Capsule agency, you will see a fab local apparel trend re-cap, and three looks from yours truly: Featherlight worn as a small clutch and two not-yet-released designs... Thanks, Sarah, and Fashion Capsule team.



Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Mood leathers: Recycled Garment

All last week was spent turning vintage leather jackets into fresh handbags of a certain best selling design. And, several new designs - cos that's the kind of year 2014 will be... exciting and somewhat overwhelming. 

Jackets are all so different and challenging. Not only they require a more in-depth design process, but the cutting can be tricky, with many original features actually playing against the pattern. Oftentimes jackets are incredibly soft and require to be stabilized on an interfacing, before they can become a bag with structure and strength.

And, the main task, is making our jacket-come-handbag beautiful. Over the couple of years that we have designed with vintage coats, I learned, that a complete result has to be more, than just a mediocre outcome of scissor and stitch work. It has to be a special interpretation of the source garment, a real second life given to the source garment, carrying its history and value.

I can never say no to working with a special vintage jacket, because they result can be nothing short of a rebirth-like experience.

More #MoodLeathers are on our Instagram feed.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Mood leathers: Select Rescued Upholstery

With the season gradually ramping up, to keep production interesting, each day we choose what to build based on mood and feeling. 

Unfinished shells of a few newbies

Select Rescued Upholstery is specialty leather found in odd lots, remnants and other rescues. All random colours and finishes. It has been our core source material since the very first season, because of its different properties and characteristics. I find it very educational to work with such a varied range of materials, as one hide is never like another, needing different kind of attention, and skill every time. 

The result is different each time, and that is what keeps things exciting.

our F/W2014 Collection will launch mid-Spring.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Bison Leather - Real New Frontiers

Bison, source Wikipedia (via Google Images)

Bison leather is revered for its strength and durability. Saddlery, military gear and work aids are built from it more often, than other leathers. Perhaps because of its most common uses, it has been somewhat under-represented in the independent accessory community. It has been commonly associated with men’s’ goods, straps, steampunk or costume design. Women’s designers seem to stray away from the industrial nature of bison.
Distressed/ waxed upholstery grade. Source Buffalo Leather Store

Also, many finishes of the leather were not that visually different from any heavier cowhide, or other upholstery pieces. Oftentimes bison would be oil-treated, which is gorgeous, but really heavy; or finished and somewhat ordinary, resulting in just a heavier version of its more common upholstery cousins, rather than a unique, specialty material.

Seeking new looks and finishes for our upcoming Collection, I decided to finally re-visit a local family tannery I’ve been in touch for years. They specialize in BC sourced wild leathers, and, not being too impressed with bison (or other wild) pieces I’ve scouted elsewhere, I gave them a try, and was astonished by what I found.

Natural grain heavy garment. Pronounced grain is amazing...

What they have is truly special - a bare, full grained and pliable leather, of a wonderful natural, imperfect finish, that needs no enhancements from a designer. In fact, inspired by their leathers, I tuned down and minimalized my sketches to accommodate for what’s already so naturally amazing.
It is the leather itself, that dictates the design, and I am just there to serve it.

Fragments/ details of the upcoming styles

Fragments/ details of the upcoming styles

Those of you, who visited our booth this Holiday show season, got the first look at the early releases, and we are thrilled with your emotional reaction towards our completely locally sourced/ grown/designed and produced pieces of a high strength and aspiration.

Three locally tanned bison and elk handbag designs (alongside three new other styles and the Permanent Collection) will launch in early Fall 2014.

Posted by Jolanta http://jolavdesigns.com