It could only begin with the opening of a scenic black box, shiny and smooth, the meeting between myself and Emilia Paolicelli, half of a project by the suave name, Meraky, thought together with Rosaria Marraffino.
Meraky, Emilia and Rosaria brand
Meraky represents the point of arrival for a trip that Rosaria and Emilia, who call themselves craftsmen, designers and partners, begin in 2015 through the creation of the Re-find concept as a place for experimentation, aggregation and research. From 2015 to 2017, their work focused on product research and development with the goal of creating lines, objects and accessories related to the world of fashion, lifestyle and design.
The lightly spicy fragrance with hints of coffee that opens when I open the sack containing the bag that Emilia and Rosaria have paired with me and my travel profession reveals the origin of the material with which all the Meraky accessories are made: bags of coffee, normally destined for undifferentiated harvesting. The bags are cleaned, cut, folded, twisted and stitched by hand. The result is every single piece of work, there are not two Meraky’s equal: each handbag is totally handcrafted, personalized and worked with a changing tile that creates unimaginable plots and colors.
Looking at the Meraky for me, designed to pass easily from one look to the other, I feel already mine and the curiosity increases to learn more about how this bag is born with the others in the collection as well as the name chosen for the brand.
Emilia tells me that the transition to Meraky has become necessary when, focusing exclusively on product development, they have increased the quality by entrusting the sewing of the bags to an Italian leather goods company and paying special attention to the finishing touches and details, like the fabrics interior, very well cared for, which are a pleasant surprise of style.
And she adds, “The brand Re-Find associates too often with the world of hobbies and recycling depriving value for all the work and commitment that we’ve put and we continue to put into this project”. To which they wanted to link a new, delicate and poetic symbol, a butterfly that witnesses their transition and is the perfect metaphor for the transformation they undertake the materials used. “The coffee bag, like the caterpillar, goes through various stages of change, until it becomes a unique and unrepeatable accessory,” – she explains, as her eyes lighten.
Then she continues: “In choosing the name, we have inspired a Greek term, meraki, which means doing something passionately and putting some of our souls in what we do”.
Emilia’s words reveal the satisfaction that both have to cover all the roles in their small and baby-born business – entrepreneurs, designers, product managers, sales managers – needed to fly their creatures.
To support the need to have a handbag from multiple personalities Meraky produces its first AROMAcollection with four models, which are an attractive proposition of strong and super cool bags.
The names of the bags are inspired by coffee. So the Tote Bag is called Arabica, the oldest and most widespread coffee variety: a wrap-around aroma for a large bag, with robust leather handles fully lined with a large inner pocket.
A delicate and gentle aroma is Espresso, a sophisticated handbag in its metallic details, with a girdle closure and a slim chain strap.
Ristretto is the hand-bag model, with light and velvety aroma, that with a few drops expressing the essence of the brand’s workmanship.
And then there is “my”, convertible bag Shakerato, the most dynamic and full-bodied aroma model, in which the handles and shoulder strap are interchangeable through open carabiners. And there the folder becomes a backpack to wear on your shoulders to be more comfortable and with your hands free when traveling to town or on a trip or in a bag to wear on a bandolier or on a shoulder. Completely removing the straps of the shoulder still changes taking on a bon chic bon genre look to keep it light with jeans and amphibians or to emphasize with long and adherent leather gloves that will be one of the musts of the fall-winter season 2017/18.
At the basis of the winning equation of this brand there is the visual and tactile pleasure of these accessories made up of “junk” interlaces that are retrieved, cleaned and then reduced to lists that become the basis for the infinite chromatic compositions of Meraky bags. They are born through a revolutionary but revolutionary design: make the envelopes that contain coffee a paint-like material, rigid but pleasing to the touch, bright and waterproof.
Emilia and Rosaria are convinced that an accessory is not just an element related to a look, but also a means of communication that often tells much more about the wearer’s personality.
“The challenge is to create something lasting, which, with the passing of seasons, is never outdated”.
The future? Meanwhile, a new site where their accessories can be purchased online. And next February of next year, this collection will be complemented by other small leather goods such as wallets, documents, beauty-cases, and the second collection of handbags.
Always addressed to a woman who falls in love with their bags and purchases, which reflects these characteristics: she is not a slave of brands, she chooses products as an expression of her identity, lifestyle and affinity, which she wants to emphasize through a unique style and exclusive.
My conclusion? I am proud and honored to have been chosen by Emilia and Rosaria as one of their Meraky women!