Handcrafted by owner Ben Thompson and his team of designers, in a boutique studio based in Bondi, NSW, these bags range from coin purses and clutches, to travel bags, and of course their signature bespoke totes. The totes are made-to-order with a choice of more than 40 leather colours – think feminine soft blush and nude tones right through to sophisticated and practical black – four handle colours and three hardware options.
With their beauty comes strength. The totes have been tested to hold more than 100 kilograms and the handles are triple-stitched using a heavy German thread. Thompson only ever uses cowhide, which he imports from Europe – Italy, Germany and Spain – as well as from Japan, Brazil and New Zealand.
A former carpenter, Thompson’s love for the art of leather work stems from a childhood interest in making and inventing. In 2003 this creative curiosity led Ben to start a clothing label focusing on tees, sweats and denim, and a few years after adding men’s belts to the range, clients began to request softer, more malleable belts for women that could be worn on the waist. From there Thompson moved into the world of women’s accessories and Charlie Middleton was born. The open plan Bondi based studio is now open seven days a week.
The whole collection is designed with the intention of giving customers years of trouble free use, and with every piece lovingly handmade, in the 11 years since Charlie Middleton’s inception, Thompson has had an unbelievably low return rate, of around 1 item in 1000.
Prices range from $35.00 for coin purses, with totes starting at around $249.
Available online at www.charliemiddleton.com and at the studio 257 Bondi Road, Bondi Beach NSW. Open from 10am, seven days.
A few Charlie Middleton best-sellers…
Blush Bespoke Tote
A buttery soft tote in Italian top grain cowhide leather. Unlined with raw edges and one internal pocket for valuables.
These totes are extremely strong! So load them up with whatever you like.
Tote pictured with Natural handles and Rose Gold studs.
Duck Egg Bespoke Tote
A buttery soft Italian top grain cowhide leather tote. Unlined with raw edges and one internal pocket for your valuables.
Tote pictured with natural handles and silver studs.
Black Nappa Bespoke Zippered Tote
A buttery soft Japanese full grain cowhide leather tote with zipper, unlined with raw edges and one internal pocket for your valuables.
Pictured with black handles and Rose Gold hardware.