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Bénédicte Magnin-Robert

Fashion Weaver, Velles, France
  • Handcrafted in France. In a celebration of craftsmanship and manufactoring traditions, we tour each French region to bring you our curated selection of exceptional homeware, gifts and collectibles.

I started with the ideal volume to contain the objects in a handbag, then began with the foundation of the bag and worked up.
Bénédicte Magnin-Robert turns basket weaving inside-out. To create her uniquely elegant woven handbags, she uses, not the core of the thin willow branches traditionally used in basket making, but rather the thin strips of outer bark. This unusual primary material is at once rich and textured, and extremely sophisticated. It finds its perfect complement in the smooth, undyed leather for her “Peau Végétal” line of accessories. Her taurillon leather is vegetable tanned, which is a traditional, artisanal process to stabilize skins without using harmful chemicals.
If the silhouette of Magnin-Robert’s handbags reminds you of little cottages, it should come of no surprise to learn that she began her professional life as an architect. After graduating from the National School of Architecture in Grenoble, she branched off into a new type of construction at the Fayl Billot National School of Basketry. She takes an architect’s approach to the conception of her wicker “constructions”, applying the proportions for a building façade: one third wicker to two thirds leather.