Being a ‘touche à tout’ with a theoretical background in art history & anthropology, and a bottom-up one in i.a. jewelry-design, sculpture, maroquinerie, I found myself playing around with leather way too long… So, that’s when DIDDA came up.
DIDDA was born out of a passion for craftsmanship and the desire to make durable goods with personality. Is it possible to merge beauty, functionality and sustainability?
For me, there’s nothing more challenging and rewarding than building a solid companion – to care and carry – out of a skin with my bare hands. And also, I admit, just for the smell of it…
I love building functional goods; playing with dualities; line vs volume, format and function, contrast in materials and texture, concept vs detail, directness and confusion, always searching for that certain tension.
All my leather goods are unique and handmade in my modernist rooftop-atelier in Laken – Belgium.
DIDDA proposes a main ‘solid’ collection and a more volatile one; a series of unique one-shots
made in the mood of the day. Your order can be personalized (length, left/right wear etc.) or completely tailor-made. Don’t hesitate to contact me for quotes and special requests.
All DIDDA goods are made of locally sourced skins. The leather is – depending on the design – either veg-tan, up-cycled or production residue from meat-production.
For me (an this is a vegetarian speaking…), no other material can yet replace the touch, feel and quality of leather (although we keep a wide eye open on upcoming alternatives). This very emotive and ancient material used by man – to carry and protect – remains for me a very ecological choice. It is a leftover natural material, ages nicely and with good care, a high quality leather DIDDA-bag will last at least a lifetime.
Vegtan or vegetable tanned leather is tanned with natural materials like tree bark. Less than 10% of the world’s leather is tanned this way today. Vegtan is a thicker and stronger leather, so the designs don’t need lining, which makes the bags lighter. Vegtan has that gorgeous leather smell, tends to age better and develops a rich patina over time. This eco-friendly product is the ideal material to most of the ‘neat’ DIDDA designs. Color-options are smaller (mostly black/nude and cognac). The leather is sourced at a Belgian tannery.
*Standard full-grain leather
This leather is generally rather smooth and comes in a wide variety of colors, textures and finishing. All the skins used by DIDDA come from European tanneries (meeting the highest standards) and are
a leftover product from meat-industry. Always keep in mind that leather is a natural product that once had a life, so every skin will
have his story and tiny imperfections, which adds up to the charm and patina.
I prefer to work with 100 % leather lining, mostly pigskin. It makes the bag slightly more heavy but it’s much stronger & more consistent in design.
5mm or 7mm metal zippers of superior quality by Belgian Zip Factory KROKO (zip manufacturer since 1944).
*Rope / sling
I mainly use 10 or 11mm round non-stretch/static polyamide cord of superior quality (used by sailors & mountaineers). This material – supplied by the ‘maisons’ corderie Smits-Henin and Corderie Barrois, can bear extreme (weather) conditions and will probably last forever.
When the design includes flat slings; those are made of 100% leather, sometimes doubled with flat polypropylene belts of superior quality provided by corderie Smits-Henin. These add up to the strength and anti-stretch of the slings.