Good evening peeps.
First day of the week is firmly in the rear-view mirror and we’ve got a cracking present waiting for you hard workers to help unwind after dealing with dem Monday blues…
…tonight’s feature focusses on England’s finest and one of the tip-top leather goods makers we stock in the supply co. as Steve from Barnes and Moore answers the 10@10.
Obviously, we like these guys, their product speaks for itself and hearing from Steve (who does every job under the sun by the sounds) is great insight into how we’ve come to have such amazing leather product, from our own shores, decorating the shop.
MEET THE BRAND BEHIND THE MENSWEAR
NAME: Steve Moss
BRAND NAME: Barnes and Moore Leatherworks
POSITION: Leatherworker, Designer, Teaboy, and Managing Director, (in that order!)
ESTABLISHED: Concept founded in 2013, Business launched in 2016
SIZE OF TEAM: 4
SPECIALITY/COMPANY FOCUS: Creating handmade, functional leathergoods with a focus on quality and workmanship. Simple things, made to last!
1. Straight forward, please tell us, how did your company Barnes and Moore start out? (For people that don’t already know)
I’ve had a love of leathercraft for a number of years, and had a desire to preserve the associated skills and craftsmanship required to produce handmade English leather goods. This led me to form the company. I started making a few belts and wallets for friends, who told their friends, and it just grew from there. Thankfully a lot of people have given us a lot of support, customers, suppliers, tanneries, retail partners they’ve all played a huge part in our journey, and we’re grateful for the opportunity to make a living following our passion.
2. Tell us. What does a day in the life of yourself look like? What’s your daily work routine?
It’s an early start most days, so I tend to hit the gym 6-7am then it’s back to the workshop where I take care of any overnight admin, and social media. Then it’s dealing with enquiries, suppliers, stock etc before we start on physically making orders. That’s the part I really enjoy, the creative process of taking something at base level and transforming it into a finished item. There’s lots of traditional processes we go through with the leather and it’s genuinely therapeutic working with your hands on something tangible, in what some would call a primitive way.
Late afternoon I’ll quality check the goods we’ve produced, and start packing duties for the orders. Being a small company, everything is done by hand, down to cutting inserts for packaging from raw materials and labelling boxes.
Early evening is generally spent going over the mechanics of the business, including looking at product design, both new and existing, and how we can improve things to help us evolve.
Later tends to be wind down time with my wife and cat, this part is essential as it aids a good night’s sleep, otherwise my mind tends to be racing and I’d be up all night!
3. What are your top 3 bestselling items? And why do you think this is?
It’s a tough question, as all our range seems to do pretty well, but our belts tend to be the most popular, I think because it’s such a staple item. We’re big denim fans, so we understand that there can be a lot of investment of time and money in the humble jean, and people don’t want to compromise in the quality of the belt holding them up!
People, worldwide are also becoming more aware of what goes into the items they buy, and taking an interest in the processes. Our customers who buy our goods and similar artisan products tend to be less accepting of paying good money for an item based predominantly on branding, they want to know what’s really behind the product, it’s journey, and the process it goes through to reach them. It’s a great thing for us, as we’re able to explain the details of the different leathers, and people are genuinely interested, it’s inspirational.
Second would be our cardholders, both the Tillerman and Riverman as both are popular as simple everyday carry. They do what they say on the tin (well, box!), and people like the uncomplicated design. We designed the Riverman to work with an optional tether, and this has gone down well with those who prefer a minimalist alternative to biker style wallets. Our Natural veg tan versions tend to sell best, but there’s a growing interest in the Horween Shell Cordovan versions too.
Last, but not least, the Sporstman Mid Wallet, we get a lot of comments about it, and I particularly like the two tone version. I think it sells well due to its design and mid-range sizing. The price point, is pretty good too. We’ve another Japanese inspired biker wallet coming out shortly and I’ll be happy if it’s as well received as the Sporstman.
4. What’s your personal favourite garment when it comes to the items you manufacture?
I love the Farrier Holdall, I use it regularly and I’m really happy with the design, and working with another material in addition to leather adds another dimension from the design perspective. The initial inspiration came from a vintage bag my Grandfather used to take to work on a daily basis, which stuck in my head as a kid, so I guess it has a special meaning for me.
5. What are your thoughts on the rise of Instagram fashion and the chaps that post their clothing on there to help spread the word of their fave brands?
I think it’s great, as it’s so positive to see people sharing their passion for clothing globally. It can give others inspiration and communicate individuality. Passion in life should be embraced, whatever that passion may be. We don’t get as much time to spend on Instagram as we’d like, due to our involvement in the business, but it’s always interesting visually and it’s great to get people’s opinions on our posts.
6. Has it made an impact on your business at all, do you think?
Yes, without a doubt, it’s unlikely that we could reach people globally with our story without social media. Instagram is a visual platform, which gives us the opportunity to get our message out to like-minded individuals. As a small company we get the chance to be seen, which would be beyond our reach using traditional media.
7. Is there any feeds on IG that you particularly like to check-in on regular. What brands are you fond of on there? What menswear feeds to you like to peruse?
My Instagram time is limited and there are many to mention, but I love to see feeds from favourite brands such as FullCount, Mister Freedom, Pherrows, Buzz Rickson, Aero, Eastman, as well as up and coming brands such as Forge Denim, and Alde Custom Clothing. I also like to check in on National Geographic.
8. A quick one about you. Other than the business, what passions do you have in life? What flicks your switch and helps you relax?
I like to keep active so I enjoy climbing, circuit training and Muay Thai. Down time is spent with my wife, family and friends, or at the cinema, I’m a big film fan.
9. What do you consider to be the best thing about your business and why?
I love the creative side of the business, and get a real sense of pride when I think that people are getting pleasure from things we’ve created. It’s amazing to think that we can be crafting a belt one day, then it’s round someone’s waist in Japan a week later. I get a good feeling when I consider that.
10. And Lucky Last, You’re going to be stranded on a desert island and you can take 1 outfit (4 items) only with you. And 1 choice of drink.
Ha ha, that’s a good question, ok here goes!
Number one would be my faithful FullCount 1108’s that came from Son of a Stag 6 years ago. They’ve been repaired a few times, but they’re like an old friend, and the tropical rays would aid the (already advanced) fades.
Number two would be my faithful Barnes and Moore Garrison belt (naturally!), I might lose a few pounds due to the limited diet, so pretty essential to keep the 1108”s in place!
Number three would be my Momotaro chambray shirt, it’s super comfortable, and I think it’d stand up to the rigours of island life!
Fourth and final, some footwear, I’ve got a pair of vintage BSA boots, that are battered, but I love them, so they’d be coming with me.
As for the liquid refreshment, I’m not a big drinker so mine’s a bottle of homemade ginger ale, the fiery kind, that hits the back of the throat like a kicking mule!
Cheers Steve, great feature my friend. Homemade ginger ale sounds like a great shout and the sense of pride you talk about can really be seen through the articles you produce mate. Speak soon.
Hope you all enjoyed tonight’s feature guys and there’s loads more to come this week…stay tuned! Also, if you’re out and about round Sheffield pop in store and take advantage of the vintage promotion we have on all week.