Designer Profile: Andrea Wong

Andrea Wong is no stranger to Much & Little. We’ve carried her beautiful products for quite a while now and are excited to share this interview with a local designer that we support and love! The Vancouver resident, along with her personal team, designs and produces handcrafted leather goods inspired by the Pacific Northwest. With a meticulous attention to detail, functionality, and visual appeal, Andrea Wong’s creations are timeless, attractive, and practical. Each product is unique, tells a story, and is meant to age gracefully with use and love.

You can find out more at: https://awbyandreawong.com/

Pictured above: Granville tote in caramel, Main backpack in black, Northwest crossbody bag in caramel (https://awbyandreawong.com/).

Pictured above: Granville tote in caramel, Main backpack in black, Northwest crossbody bag in caramel (https://awbyandreawong.com/).

It was our pleasure getting to know the designer in more depth; here’s a glimpse into her life and creative process:

1.   What was the inspiration behind the first AW by Andrea Wong collection?

“When I first began AW by Andrea Wong, it happened quite organically. I was taking some time off for the first time in over a decade after working as a full time designer in corporate fashion. I travelled quite a lot during my time as a clothing designer and had accumulated leather skins and beautiful handwoven and printed textiles. I began experimenting and working with the materials that I had on hand. I spent time enjoying the process and creativity brought on by these limitations.

Initially, I started producing bags without the intention to sell them. I wanted to give new life to these beautiful materials that I had just admired on a shelf, so it was important that they would also function well for everyday adventures. I started taking my studio projects more seriously when I had a friend come to visit and insist that I sell her a bag. Sometimes it just takes that one person to encourage you to take that leap. I ended up a bit backwards having the products first before I even had a logo or a brand name.”

2.   How do you ensure the uniqueness of your designs against the competition?

“Every item in my collection continues to be handcrafted; this is a slow but rewarding process. This also influences the way I design. I don’t want to be producing an item that someone could find in any leather line. If I am going to be spending the time to make a lovingly handcrafted item, I want to create a unique and functional design with quality materials that will age gracefully. My passion lies in the design process and less so in the business side of things. I enjoy spending my time thinking about specific details like closures, pockets and leather strap attachments to ensure that my designs are unique to my line and well thought out.”  

3.   Was there a particular motivation behind the need to focus on women’s accessories specifically? Do you plan to branch out into creating other types of products?

“I suppose the products I initially created were more feminine. However, my line has been moving into cleaner more architectural lines which is creating more gender neutral items. I started designing more tech focused items such as laptop cases and phone slings which is something that I would like to continue to explore.”  

4.   What is the aspect of your business that you take the most pride in?

“After designing for reputable clothing lines with regular visits overseas at the factory level, I knew when I started my business that it was important to me to keep things more localized. I am proud that I run an ethically sourced and locally produced business.”

5.   What is/has been the most challenging part of your journey as a designer?

“The most challenging aspect of my journey as a designer is growing my business without compromising the product or the values that I have instilled.” 

6.   What are some of your other hobbies, interests, and passions?

“I am most happy in the outdoors. If I am on a snowboard in the winter or camping along the coast in the summer, I am at ease. I have worked along side the DTES community for years and am now looking at different ways I can effectively input my skill set.”  

7.   As someone who appreciates what Vancouver has to offer, what is your favourite thing about this city? 

“The mountains and the ocean! In the summer you can have a sunset beach picnic after work. In the winter you can hit a local mountain and have a snowboard session after work – and that’s all just during the week!” 

8.   What do you hope to achieve in the future, personally and professionally? 

“When I began working on AW it was a very open and exploratory time. I am looking forward to returning to that mode of productive and playful uncertainty as I continue to explore other avenues. I don’t want to limit myself to just design but also more outdoor adventures involving back country camping and bike touring as well as community development work.”

I Love You, Mom!

There’s less than a week left to show your mom how much you care! We’ve got a large selection of gift ideas for her in store at M&L. You can find everything from candles and bath salts to clothing and shoes. Whether she wants to dress to impress or treat herself to some R&R, we’ve got you covered. Here a few gift ideas that we think would be sure to please her this Mother’s Day. But there’s so much more in the shop, so stop by and take a look. xx

 

Vibrant colours to go with the day. Sunshine yellow cotton top from Atelier Delphine, a painterly silk tank from Elk the Label, some sweet local jam and a Frankie mag for the creative mum.

Vibrant colours to go with the day. Sunshine yellow cotton top from Atelier Delphine, a painterly silk tank from Elk the Label, some sweet local jam and a Frankie mag for the creative mom.

 

An every tote bag from Herschel to carry life's essentials, an assortment of craft chocolate, and some good reads!

An every tote bag from Herschel to carry life’s essentials, an assortment of craft chocolate, and some good reads!

 

Classic nautically-inspired pullover from Harris Wilson, an addictive Sidney Hale candle and locally made bath salt from Kismet Essentials.

Classic nautically-inspired pullover from Harris Wilson, an addictive Sidney Hale candle and locally made bath salts from Kismet Essentials.

 

 

Pendleton saddle blanket, Corkcicle canteen, large enamel locket, and an addictive Sydney Hale candle.

Pendleton saddle blanket, Corkcicle canteen, large enamel locket, and a Sydney Hale candle in on of our best selling scents.

 

Linen top from Black Crane,  locally bath salts from Kismet, local caramels made by Candid Confectioner, enamel locket from Paris and a very handy tray for anything from jewelry to keys to cosmetics.

Linen top from Black Crane, locally made bath salts, local caramels made by Candid Confectioner, enamel locket from Paris and a very handy tray for anything from jewelry to keys to cosmetics.

 

Radical Women print and cards from Banquet Atelier

Radical Women print and cards from Banquet Atelier.

 

Hooray For Herschel!

It’s 2018 and we’re back with some fresh new Herschel stock! Visit us today to explore these practical, versatile, and fun items available in a variety of styles, patterns and colours.

Pictured from left to right: Herschel Mac coat, Herschel Field jacket, Herschel Varsity jacket. Great stand alone or layering pieces!

Pictured from left to right: Herschel Mac jacket, Herschel Field jacket, and Herschel Varsity peacoat. Great stand alone or layering pieces!

 

The Mac jacket in khaki offers a sleek yet chic design with branded detailing and a flattering fit. It's a wardrobe essential for the upcoming spring months!

The Mac trench coat in khaki offers a sleek yet chic design with branded detailing and a flattering fit. It’s a wardrobe essential for the upcoming spring months!

 

The Varsity jacket in navy is sportswear-inspired with snap hardware. Cool, comfortable, and a classic!

The Varsity peacoat in navy is sportswear-inspired with snap hardware. Cool, comfortable, and a classic!

 

The Field jacket in olive is a military-inspired design with a minimal yet functional look. The utility pocketing is practical and modern!

The Field jacket in dark olive is a military-inspired design with a minimal yet functional look. The utility pocketing is practical and modern!

 

Hooray for accessories! The Vincent bifold wallet (from bottom to top) in tan, picante, and black leather is a necessary everyday staple. Beautifully made, great to the touch, an excellent gift.

Hooray for accessories! The Vincent bifold wallet (from bottom to top) in tan, picante, and black leather is a necessary everyday staple. Beautifully made and great to the touch!

 

The Ace wallet offers a compact cardholder design with brushed metal branded detailing.

The Ace wallet offers a compact cardholder design with brushed metal branded detailing.

 

Carry your belongings in style with these vibrant patterned laptop sleeves by Herschel.

Carry your belongings in style with these vibrant patterned laptop sleeves by Herschel.

 

These assorted travel kits are available in a variety of patterns and colours. As the spring season approaches, make sure that your packed essentials stand out on your next trip!

These assorted travel kits are available in a variety of patterns and colours. As the spring season approaches, make sure that your packed essentials stand out on your next trip!

 

Herschel hasn't left out the kids in your life! Cute, colourful, and practical lunchboxes and backpacks make for perfect school accessories. Available in variety of sizes and styles!

Herschel hasn’t left out the kids in your life! Cute, colourful, and practical lunch boxes and backpacks make for perfect school accessories. Available in a variety of sizes and styles!

Local Love: Foodstuffs & More!

Who doesn’t love delicious artisanal goodies that are locally made? What about fun yet practical products for enjoying this holiday season and beyond? With Christmas fast approaching, don’t miss out on the chance to grab these unique and beautifully made products now in store at Much & Little. Browse through our eclectic selection of jams, chocolates, sauces, syrups, ceramics, and much more! Crafted with love and sure to be loved this winter as gifts!

BC-based Jonny Hetherington produces premium hot sauces and ketchups using natural ingredients. Can't go wrong with these essential condiments!

BC-based Jonny Hetherington produces premium hot sauces and ketchups using natural ingredients. Can’t go wrong with these essential condiments!

Cocoa lovers won't be able to stay away from these sweet treats!

Cacao lovers won’t be able to stay away from these sweet treats!

Dick Taylor specializes in single origin two ingredient craft chocolate. This is the good stuff!

Dick Taylor specializes in single origin two ingredient craft chocolate. This is the good stuff!

Raaka provides artisanl bean-to-bar chocolate. This Brooklyn-based company sure knows how to put a creative spin on a delicious treat.

Raaka provides artisanal bean-to-bar chocolate. This Brooklyn-based company sure knows how to put a creative spin on a delicious treat.

Omnom offers award winning chocolate from Iceland. Stunning visuals and tantalizing flavours!

Omnom offers award-winning chocolate from Iceland. Stunning visuals and tantalizing flavours!

You can't go wrong with these goodies from Wellington Chocolate Factory. Organic, ethically sourced and traded, and high quality artisanal chocolate based in New Zealand. An assortment of delicious flavours, yum!

You can’t go wrong with these goodies from Wellington Chocolate Factory. Organic, ethically sourced and traded, and high quality artisanal chocolate based in New Zealand. An assortment of delicious flavours, yum!

Find joy this holiday season with these beautifully handcrafted pottery pieces by BC-based designer Kalika Bowlby. Simple yet timeless aesthetic.

Find joy this holiday season with these beautifully handcrafted pottery pieces by BC-based designer Kalika Bowlby. A simple yet timeless aesthetic.

Coastal Craftwork is another local gem. Hand constructed rope storage baskets and much more! Functionality, simplicity, and a great attention to detail.

Coastal Craftwork is another local gem. Hand constructed rope storage baskets and much more! Functionality, simplicity, and great attention to detail.

Harvested from the mountains of the Pacific Northwest, taste some west coast nature in this selection of teas from Juniper Ridge.

Harvested from the mountains of the Pacific Northwest, taste some west coast nature in this selection of teas from Juniper Ridge.

Cahoots! Try this selection of all natural simple syrup mixes for cocktails. Available in multiple collaborative flavours!

Cahoots! Try this selection of all natural simple syrup mixes for cocktails. Available in multiple flavours!

Dillon's offers handcrafted small batch bitters in a variety of flavours. Perfect stocking stuffers!

Dillon’s offers handcrafted small batch bitters in a variety of flavours. Perfect stocking stuffers!

Gourmet sea salt sourced from Vancouver Island. Award-winning flavours, a kitchen staple!

Gourmet sea salt sourced from Vancouver Island. Award-winning tastes and a kitchen staple!

Make room for East Van Jam. More love, less sugar! Inspired by the uniqueness of East Van, share the love with this local selection of spreads. Also featured in the photo: Vancouver-based Livia Sweets caramelized sweet onion jam.

Make room for East Van Jam. More love, less sugar! Inspired by the uniqueness of East Van, share the love with this local selection of spreads. Also featured in the photo: Vancouver-based Livia Sweets caramelized sweet onion jam.

You can count on the Candid Confectioner and Batch to deliver deliciously sweet goodies time after time! Also featured in the photo: felted scenic stockings to carry all your gifts in style!

You can count on the Candid Confectioner and Batch to deliver deliciously sweet goodies time after time! Also featured in the photo: felted scenic stockings to display all your gifts in style!

High quality handcrafted honey infusions by Mellifera Bees are the perfect gift! A great way to sweeten up your life!

Finally, some high quality handcrafted honey infusions by Mellifera Bees. A great way to sweeten up your life and of course the perfect gift!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gifts On The Go: His & Hers

Don’t know what to gift him or her for the holidays? At Much and Little, we’ve got a wide selection of fun and practical products that are perfect for the on-the-go man or woman in your life. Everything from tumblers to umbrellas to deodorant, we’ve got you covered to make your holiday shopping that much easier! Visit us in store today to browse through our wide variety of gift items.

Ideas For Him

These items capture everything that he would need to prepare for a day out and about. Talk about putting the fun in functional!

These ten items capture everything that he would need to prepare for a day out and about. Talk about putting the fun in functional!

BeFunky_Collage2_700x

Featured in the photo:

  • Herschel Dawson knapsack
  • Baggu reusable tote
  • United By Blue t-shirt
  • Corksicle steel tumbler
  • Journal/planner
  • Ted Baker manicure set
  • Growler carrier
  • Activated charcoal deodorant
  • Leather key carrier
  • Aromatherapy spray – Rugged Gentleman
  • Blunt XS umbrella – Navy

BeFunky_Collage4_700x

Ideas For Her

Keep her hydrated, refreshed, and inspired with these colourful essentials for the girl on the go.

Keep her hydrated, refreshed, and inspired with these colourful essentials for the girl on the go.

 

BeFunky_Collage8_700x (1)

Featured in the photo:

  • Fog Linen tote bag
  • Baggu reusable tote
  • XS Unified cuffed pom pom beanie
  • Corksicle stemless tumbler
  • Concept planner
  • Gold nail clippers
  • Everyday Oil
  • Hola natural deodorant
  • Booda Butter daily moisturizer
  • Aromatherapy spray – Good Morning Beautiful
  • Blunt XS umbrella – Red

BeFunky_Collage9_700x (1)