Meet my friend Anthony DeBenedictis – that’s him with his sister and adorable niece. Anthony is not only a vegan but a talented artist who has the awesome job of designing hot purses and wallets – many of them vegan! I asked Anthony to share with us his creation process…
I’m a freelance designer & illustrator for Kenneth Cole NY (but actually work for a company called Mundi-Westport, which handles many KC projects). I design small leather goods and small handbags, mostly for the Reaction line, which uses mostly non-leather and synthetic materials (except for a few items here & there that may use a strip of leather). So, for all your vegetarians & vegans out there, most of the Reaction line is safe to buy!
My job involves a lot of drawing/sketching with actual “paper & pencil” .. and yes I do work some on the computer. I do some research, a little bit of shopping around for ideas, inspiration. Once in awhile, I get to rip old bags and samples apart to see how they’re constructed, which can be fun! I also check out different kinds of materials to use, but most of my suggestions go unnoticed because I always pick out the most expensive stuff!! PVC/PU is what’s mainly used in the Reaction line, which feels and looks like leather, and it does not look cheap at all. Also, PVC/PU can get expensive, depending on the quality and finish, however, it’s still less costly than leather and all the cows can live long, happy lives eating grass & hanging out
Here is a neat little clutch I did with leopard print interior.. and an older handbag, I designed the exterior portion, which was fun to sketch because of all the weaving & layering of material!
When I’m not designing, I’m painting & drawing, which helps me clear my head because I deal with way too many serious, sometimes mean people in the fashion industry.
Anthony is not only a gifted designer, but an artist too. Visit his website WeirdEyeOne to see his art, shop his store and read his blog.