All Photos by Jon + Moch Photography
I always happen to find myself on the go. Meetings, get-togethers, everyday errands. Trotting off to work or conversing with a friend over happy hour or helping someone move. Always moving typically means accumulating stuff. Tote bags manage to be a wonderful solution to this transient lifestyle.
Easily filling a tote with my wallet, phone, charger, mints, chap stick, makeup pouch, or a change of clothes as needed allows my day to flow rather seamlessly. Oh, and dare I forget to note the endless supply of snacks and beverage options you can stash away inside? Perpetual snackers of all kinds, welcome to Club Tote. The tote has always been a one stop shop for men and women who have places to be and people to see, and things to eat.
After establishing a collaborative review with Australian designer and conscious consumer, Claire Chapman, you can imagine my delight to discover her selection of mid-sized totes. You don’t often see this particular size offered. In my research, one would imagine a tote to be much larger – think gym bag or carry-on compatibility. Interestingly, the Simple Black Leather Tote caught my attention amidst the variety of prints, sizes, and textures. Lately, I’ve been learning how profound simple can be.
Before I get ahead of myself, just who is Small World Dreams? What was Claire’s vision and why ethical manufacturing? This Aussie brand had a vision of quality over quantity. Claire desired to create a small luxury, handcrafted accessories brand focused on the eco-conscious consumer. In an age where consumers rarely bat an eyelash at who made the goods we daily utilize, Claire saw opportunity, a niche market for those who thoughtfully questioned the status quo. Small World Dreams was born.
In terms of manufacturing, Claire strategically crafts each piece by hand. Beyond this beautiful attention to detail, Small World Dreams upholds sustainability through every layer of production. In more depth, here’s some specific detailing behind Claire’s vision and production processes (an excerpt from the Small World Dreams website):
MADE IN QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA
Claire’s accessories are designed and handmade in Mackay, Queensland of materials which have been sourced in an ethically and environmentally responsible manner from Australia and Africa. We believe in supporting Australian made and up to 80% of our supplies are sourced in Australia. This enables us to help local business, and our materials don’t have to be shipped quite so far.
VEGAN LEATHER ALTERNATIVE
SWD is proud to oﬀer a vegan leather alternative and is one of the ﬁrst Australian designers to use the revolutionary Pinatex textile. Pinatex is a natural innovative and patented new material made from pineapple leaf ﬁbres gathered by partnered farming cooperatives in the Philippines. Pinatex ﬁbres are the by-product of the pineapple harvest. No extra land, water fertiliser or pesticides are require to produce them. Learn more about Pinatex here.
NO WASTE POLICY
To reduce production waste to a bare minimum, SWD “no waste” policy means even scrap leather and fabric is bundled into bags and sold on Etsy or donated to local craft groups.
PACKAGING & POST
All ﬁnished items are packaged in recycled tissue and where possible posted in recycled paper boxes (you are encouraged to reuse as a storage box).
If you’ve been opposed to investing in a tote, feeling this style might be a bit too large or weighted for your aesthetic or needs, the mid sized Simple Black Leather Tote by Small World Dreams is certainly worth a second look. A simple addition to any colorful or minimalist wardrobe, this piece embodies the definition of fewer, better.
Note: Thank you, Small World Dreams, for gifting us the Simple Black Leather Tote to review for this post. For the sake of transparency, we were not compensated for this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own. Thank you for reading along!