It takes time to make one of Fontana Milano 1915’s ‘A’ bags. The family-run, Milan-based luxury leather goods house applies a century’s worth of accumulated expertise to each bag’s meticulous handcrafting.

From the careful selection of richly toned hide by the artisan cutters and the elimination of flaws, to the lining with soft nappa leather and the secure final stitching, the rigorously supervised process takes two or three days to complete.

Fontana Milano 1915’s 'A' bags on display in its Milan flagship

To mark Wallpaper’s 20th anniversary last September, we added a further twist. Working closely with Fontana Milano 1915’s Porta Romana atelier, Wallpaper* creative director Sarah Douglas conceived a bespoke ‘A’ bag – a birthday gift to ourselves. The lower half of the honey-hued one-off was handpainted in Wallpaper* Blue, the magazine’s signature tone, created in collaboration with British paper mill James Cropper. A leather keyring, rendered as the Wallpaper* asterisk, also swings from the handle.

Our makeover comprised an elegant redressing of a quietly iconic bag, which was showcased at a party at Fontana Milano 1915's Milan flagship last month. The event also showcased four new other ‘A’ bag designs, imagined in varying shades of blue. In wonderfully wintery hues, these creations sat amongst a snowflake inspired cracked glass set, conceived by Frederik de Watcher.

As originally featured in the October 2016 issue of Wallpaper* (W*211)

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