AYK Leather Goods

Rail 814 was established to bring spotlight to emerging designers.  Believe in shopping small brands and getting to know the creator behind the pieces, I want to start a new blog series to salute these designers, makers, and innovators.  These people dedicate their heart and souls to bring their ideas to life. The results are beautiful products with the highest craftsmanship.  Through this series, I hope people will discover their new favorite brands and learn the unique story behind each creation. 

Kicking off the series is my recent purchase: Bucket Bag by AYK

AYK Booth

(Photo Credit: AYK Instagram)
AYK’s booth at the show

I had the pleasure to meet Angie, creator behind AYK, last year at the West Coast Craft show in the winter of 2015.  As I worked my way through the hustle and bustle of the market, I spotted a simple yet sophisticated booth.  It was AYK.  Immediately, I was drawn to a simple bucket bag with grey and indigo gradient color.  The bag was detailed with two tassels and polished gold hardware.  I fell in love.

AYK Moon Bucket Bag

(Photo Credit: AYK Instagram)
Moon Collection Bucket Bag

As I chatted up with Angie at the booth, she told me that she dyed the leather herself.  Each piece of leather is dyed individually, and the process takes hours of patience as she sprays 20 to 100 layers of color by hand.

Angie Kim AYK leather bag

(Photo Credit: Verite Publichsed)
Angie dyeing the leather for Yosemite collection – a collection reflecting life’s journey while capturing the beauty of raw nature.

The result is a beautiful gradient color.

AYK Moon Collection

(Photo Credit: shopAYK.com)
Color tone of the Moon Collection, which represents the romantic moodiness of the night hours.

Looking at the fine stitching and thoughtful construction of the bag, I couldn’t help but to ask where she had learn the skill of leatherwork.  It turns out, Angie learned her skills from the best in the industry – an ex-Hermès leather artisan who also worked on the infamous “Kelly” bag.  Angie’s background as an industrial designer also contributed to the construction and craft of the bag.  It is nice knowing that she cared for the quality as much as the design.

Angie AYK Bag

(Photo Credit: AYK Instagram)
Angie’s detailed attention on each leather pieces.

The making of every piece is so labor intensive that she can only make a limited quantity every year.  Lucky for me, and other AYK fans, only a handful of people will carry her beautiful creations. 

I’ve been carrying my AYK’s Moon Collection Bucket bag for months and it has become my go-to bag.  In the beginning, I was worried about the non-adjustable strap.  I have not had a bag with a fixed length strap before!  I must say it was a bold and confident decision by Angie, and she was right.  The seamless one-piece strap makes carrying it much more comfortable.  Surprisingly, the length was perfect for both on the shoulder and cross body. 

AYK Moon Bucket Bag

The bag and I. <3 

Other than the bucket bag, I am also a fan of the Versa Clutch.  It is a nice carry-all bag that will be great for a night out on the town.

AYK Versa Clutch

(Photo Credit: ShopAYK.com)
Moon Versa Clutch

What’s next for Angie and AYK? All I can tell you is that she already has something new and exciting in the works.  Follow her on Instagram @shopAYK and subscribe to her mailing list on her website www.shopAYK.com to be the first to know.




Rail 814 is not affiliated with the brands mentioned in the blog, nor being sponsored for the contents.  Comments are based on personal remark.



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