You can never have too many bags. My grandmother says it. My mum says it. And now I say it. It’s hereditary, it’s in my blood and I can’t ignore it. I ridiculously have a bag for every occasion – work, dinner, grocery shopping, the list goes on. Then I have a mini clutch with my day-to-day essentials (wallet, keys, smoothie loyalty card etc) that I put inside my normal sized bags so I don’t leave important things in the bag I was using yesterday today. It’s a confusing system but it works for me. To join the family next will be a bag from Du Zen!
Launching today, Du Zen! is a Melbourne-based leather accessories label by Samantha Rogers. Originally having studying Industrial Design at RMIT, Samantha has since worked across lighting, furniture and graphic design, before discovering leather craftsmanship was her calling. The label has been in development for two years, as Sam was keen to get things right, and has taken 24 months designing, redesigning, sampling, road testing and setting up the manufacturing of every item in her range right here in Melbourne.
The result is her impressive first capsule range of leather accessories including wallets, clutches, bags and backpacks built upon classic silhouettes that are both fun and practical, with unexpected pops of colour. Sam says ‘Du Zen! was born out of a desire to create wonderfully crafted leather accessories that embody colourful style and a sense of play.’ Fastidious about attention to detail, Sam has ensured that every zip fastenings, straps and clasps are robust and ready to be used in the real world – not just look pretty. In order to maintain a hands on approach to manufacturing, Sam was keen to keep things local. ‘Through developing and producing my designs locally, I am able to remain fully immersed in every stage from conception to manufacture, it also gives me the flexibility to change things when they come up!’ she says.
It’s a pretty smart move ending your brand name with an exclamation mark, as it ensures excitement will follow whenever it is mentioned. Though with designs like, this we expect no less. What’s next for Sam and Du Zen!? ‘I want to keep designing everyday products that balance the practical, playful, tactile and of course beautiful. Only this time I hope to do it in less than two years!’