a talk with the couple behind catzorange

at ankle, we have a thing for nice, simple, durable bags. so when we discovered catzorange, we immediately thought we had to let you guys know about this brooklyn based brand. coco and johnny, a couple who met in berlin, are crafting totes and baskets made of natural cotton rope - which totally transcend the ethical accessory category. read our interview below to learn more about these two awesome creatives (and their playlists inspired by drinks, which is probably the best idea since sliced bread).

firstly, how has your day been?

warm, very warm - it’s hot in new york at the moment.

do you have a morning ritual – what do you do when you wake up?

we water our bazillion plants, drink lots of earl grey with milk, go through emails, pack up orders, take a walk to our drop off place where the lady is the sweetest and already knows us. some days of the week when the light is good, and it is especially good in the morning, we shoot some pictures for lookbooks and stuff.

can you tell us how catzorange started? we’d like to know more about your background.

it started organically. we both met in berlin, fell deeply in love, moved to the west village in new york, and started creating ever since. we both speak different languages, have different cultural backgrounds - one is from berlin the other from new york city and both are inspiring and creative in their own way - it’s a good mix.

you wrote that your first collection was inspired by traditional craftsmanship and thoughtful production. can you develop on that?

containers and vessels are central and indispensable in most cultures throughout history. baskets made in many different ways used to be a medium for artistic expression, cultural sensibility, and individual prestige and pride. baskets can be used in purely aesthetic as well as practical ways.

the care and importance of the process that went into those vessels is something we try to carry into our own work and informs our creative process. we wanted to take the idea of technique, intuition and care into our bags, make sure they retain their functionality and use while creating valuable and beautiful pieces.

all your bags are made of beautiful natural cotton rope - how did you come to use this particular material?

we fell in love with its natural soft white color and the shapes that it can create when you work with it. it will hold its shape and structure but also has its own mind. we envisioned something in its simplest form with gentle curves that, in its aesthetic way, pleases the mind and reduces the stress of the individual.

as your brand offers two styles with slight variations, the circle tote and the bucket bag, would you say that you value quality over quantity?

yes, absolutely! we wanted to create bags that can be worn by men and women with any outfit and to any occasion. nonseasonal, with a distinctive signature shape. we are test driving a lot of different shapes and styles and some we like, and some we feel are not quite ready yet. we have something new coming that we feel very good about, and are excited to share them soon. each bag deserves its time. we also don’t want to discontinue a style if we don’t have to. our aim is to create timeless pieces, that you can still wear in years from now. we are not planning on saying goodbye to any of our shapes.

do you have a profile in mind when thinking about your customers?

no, we don’t. we like that the bags works differently on everyone. we are proud of our diverse demographic and want to create affordable and ethical luxury.

what keeps you focused while you’re working – what’s your mood music?

we have an extensive collection of playlists that are all named after drinks. we listen to what we feel like drinking, tea with milk requires a different mood music than orange juice, san pellegrino or côtes du rhône. right now we are listening to a lot of cold brew and calvados.

when you’re not working, what do you like to do?

we love to travel and explore places. we are planning a big trip through europe for next year and japan is on our list too.

any favorite spots in brooklyn we should check out?

falansai - one of the best spots around our apt for forgotten dinner plans. and good times vintage for the most beautiful and inspiring plant and interiors selection.