Shannon- Bag lady

Shannon at home with Lola

Name: Shannon South
Occupation: Product + Handbag Designer
Company:  Shannon South and Remade USA
Hometown: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Current city/how long: Brooklyn / 10 yrs

Isobel: We met at Capsule Trade Show this Spring. How long have you been making hand-bags and what got you into accessory design?
Shannon: I made my first handbag many years ago after my first trip to London, when I was in college. I was completely inspired by the makers at Portobello Market selling their designs. Meeting independent designers face-to-face made it seem so accessible to me and as soon as I got home, I got to work. I sold to a few boutiques around town and eventually taught myself how to build websites in the mid-90s, so I could sell my bags online. I ended up moving to NYC and finding an over-abundance of work as a web designer, but always managed to keep making bags on the side. About four years ago, I launched a line of recycled leather bags under the label Remade USA (sold through Barneys NY) and decided to focus on my bag business full time. My latest collection is sold under my name and manufactured in NYC  from remnant leather from the furniture industry.

Gorgeous hobo bag

Isobel: One of the things that drew me to your bags is the lush leather you use and your understated colors. You mentioned that you use a special vintage discontinued leather. Can you talk about how you choose your materials and what inspires your designs?
Shannon: Making bags from recycled leather was a very labor intensive process and really difficult to scale. I started searching for other material options with the requirement that they come from an ethical source. After a long search, I found a company that dealt in remnant leather and I fell in love with the nubuck leather that they had in stock. I then found a great manufacturer in NYC to make them and launched my current collection last year. My designs are very much about comfortable, functional luxury that will last.
Isobel: If you were going to give some advise to a budding hand-bag designer, what would it be?

Shannon: There are so many bag designers out there and it is a very competitive market because most people just don't buy handbags that often. I believe it really helps to have a point of view, to respect the fact that the material came from a living-creature (if it is leather) and make high quality products that will last - both in style and construction.
Lola in prospect park

Isobel: I know everyone's going to want to know what breed Lola, your dog is. How old is she, and what breed is she?

Shannon: Lola is the sweetest, most wonderful dog and I'm so glad we found her breed. She is a six month old Wirehaired Pointing Griffon. She gets me out of bed early and keeps me company at the studio. We are lucky enough to live close to Prospect Park, so we are there every morning between seven and nine AM. It's such a fun way to start the day.
Shannon is wearing the phoebe sandal in storm, available exclusively at Earnest Sewn.


  1. Love Shannon and her work and so happy I found your clogs. I am looking forward to getting a pair of my own someday.


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