This proudly Filipino brand elevates daily essentials
The pandemic is either a blessing, a challenge, or both depending on how you look at it. Although the people behind Attique have been displaced by COVID-19, the artisans are surely where they’re supposed to be: producing handcrafted daily essentials all Filipinos can be proud of.
“We started the brand from our bodega, during the first round of the enhanced community quarantine last year. Our main livelihood is based on live events. My husband, Enzo, is a set and stage designer and when COVID struck, the industry was among the first to be put on hold. As early as then, we knew live shows and mass gatherings would not be back for a significant amount of time. As such, we needed to find another means of livelihood for our small crew (composed of painters, artists, and stage workers) who was quarantined in our warehouse,” shares Abi Pizarro, marketing and operations manager for Attique.
The brand’s creations range from bags, furniture, PPEs, small leather goods, and their best-seller, face masks. These products are not just handcrafted, they’re made with premium leather that promote inclusivity too. One of the favorites among their products is the Pride mask, which features colors of the rainbow in support of the LGBT community. Aside from this cause, we learned more about the brand as we caught up with the brand to get a closer look. Read through our exchange below:
Kindly share how you came up with leather goods and the production of masks as first offering?
Enzo is an avid leather crafter and he used to make bags, purses, and small accessories as a hobby. During ECQ, he decided to train our guys on the craft and we started selling their work on social media. Even now, as the live events industry is slowly trying to bounce back, Attique serves as a sustainable secondary source of income for them.
The first items we came up with were leather masks because we thought it was timely to offer a stylish, functional, and durable alternative to disposable facemasks. One year since and we’ve also come up with other leather accessories such as bags, keychains, wallets, and folios. We also accept commissioned work for clients.
Who designs the pieces?
Enzo is our resident artist and he designs all our pieces. He’s a stage/set designer (check out some of his past work at IG: @enzopizarrodesigns) by day, pre-COVID.
Please share a brief background about your Lechtre and Oni face masks.
Wearing masks isn’t the most comfortable thing, so we thought why not make it fun? Enzo, a pop culture fanatic, designed the Lechtre after the character of Dr. Hannibal Lecter in “Silence of the Lambs.” The Oni was inspired by Japanese samurai warriors who reminded us of their unwavering commitment to duty and sacrifice even in the harshest times. To be honest, the Oni was a personal project and we didn’t think its “weirdness” would translate to so many people. We were pleasantly surprised that it has become our #1 bestseller. We’ve sold hundreds of Oni here and in other countries such as the US, Australia, France, UK, and yes, even Japan.
Do you have a personal favorite on the selection?
Enzo’s favorite, of course, is the Oni. We’ve designed a line of bags that carry more of our Philippine culture and for me, it will be my favorite once released.
What makes your brand standout among others in the market?
We’re happy to belong to a community of talented Filipino leather crafters. Attique is unique because we design things to be both functional and artistic. Also, we adhere to our principle of making things with our own hands. All our products are 100 percent hand-tooled and hand-stitched. Lastly, we are not a sole artisan who sells stuff to make a living for himself. We are guided by our initiative to train those who want to be skilled in the craft and provide an income for people whose livelihoods have been affected by this pandemic.
What pieces can we expect from the brand in the near future?
We expect our brand to grow and hope that people will appreciate things that are well-made and worthy to be kept for generations. We’re in the process of designing a collection using Filipino fabric combined with leather to highlight our culture.
Follow Attique on Instagram for more information