Since we’re all buying less and thinking harder about better using what we already have, it seemed fortuitous that The Restory popped up on my radar at a recent press day.
Aimed at people who buy quality handbags and shoes who want to keep them looking box-fresh forever, the company runs a restorative service that will bring your skankiest ballet pumps back to life (see below before and after image). It’s like a posh version of make-do-and-mend. From daily wear and tear to major rebuilds, the company will work its magic on pretty much any leather item, with shoes and handbags being the most popular.
The work is done by skilled artisans, often hand bag/shoe designers in their own right, who love analysing the workmanship and replicating the intricate, original details. They can also get creative, suggesting interesting ideas such as leather tattoos and creative rebuilds around projects that are too tricky to return to their original state.
It’s a terrific idea, if you’ve spent money on a great handbag, then even the teeniest scratch can make you cross, I know women who are as angsty about their handbag condition as my dad used to be about his Vauxhall Viva, although I’m definitely not at this level. But I do have a handbag (Ally Capellino) which has a giant ink mark on it, right at the front. The team at the press day suggested they could dye the whole bag a new, darker colour, navy for example, as removing an ink stain is tricky.
Prices start at around £140 for repairs, but you can also send your bag or shoes in for a big clean up (shoes from £30 and bags from £95), including suede, which is very hard to keep looking good. And keeping those Stan Smiths/other brands are available white? Not a problem, it’s one of the biggest requests they get.
It has been an extremely successful year for the company and the press team told me they hope to be offering a full wardrobe service (ie they’ll fix all your clothes too) some time next year.
Find out more on The Restory website here.