Long-time Londoner, and one of the world’s most famous Brits, Stephen Fry is well versed in the capital’s idiosyncrasies. “The English language is like London: proudly barbaric yet deeply civilised, too, common yet royal, vulgar yet processional, sacred yet profane,” he wrote in The Ode Less Travelled, perfectly summing up London’s dual personality and ability to sit at both ends of the spectrum.
This duality, this funny, quirky characteristic so synonymous with London – and Londoners – is just what The Rake’s Ettinger collection taps into. The luxury leatherware company, born in Britain and developed over the last 83 years, carries a quiet synergy with its sense of British style and character. The signature London Tan, for example, is recognisable at twenty feet, a rich golden hue just the right side of yellow. The London Tan was inspired by a fleet of buses that used to gather up Bournemouth’s commuters one end and deposit them the other.
Stamped with the sign of the Royal Warrant, Ettinger London Tan is an iconic part of many of their designs from the Bridle Hide Credit Card Case to the classic Billfold Wallet. The playful use of colour also expresses the Londoner’s need for expression and creativity, but in a subtle and elegant way. Take the Sterling Collection, inspired by none other than British bank notes. Each wallet and credit card holder is individually lined in a single exuberant shade of pillar-box red, sea-green turquoise, citrus orange or thistle-purple. The outside, however, is made of flawless black leather, with the understanding that Londoners may want to look smart, professional and polished outwardly, but they can have a little fun with the interior. “The colours look superb on leather,” Ettinger’s Marketing Director Jerome Mackay explains to The Rake, “and the same concept applies to the idea of wearing a classic business suit with an audacious silk-print lining inside”. The joy is in knowing something others don’t.