According to the WIEN PRODUCTS city map, bags with special qualities can be found at the EVA BLUT flagship store on Kühfußgasse right near Graben.
I’m interested in how her designs are created, so I head over to the studio in the seventh district.
Eva Buchleitner, the woman behind the EVA BLUT label, has been a successful designer for almost 20 years and welcomes me into her leather-scented studio on Schottenfeldgasse.
Under high ceilings, neat rows of patterns hang on the wall, boxes of material are stacked on shelves, tools lie on the table. I see old leather sewing machines–beauties in elegant grey and machine green and plenty of sewing thread in different colors.
The rooms exude calm, the dog relaxs after a few minutes and returns to his blanket.
Eva Buchleitner is a dynamic person; she knows what she’s doing and what she wants. When she talks, she does so with her hands, describing shapes and movements. This dynamism and flexibility distinguishes her products–bags that can do more than just look beautiful. She doesn’t like hard things against her body, she tells me–that’s why she designs models called Twister, Sack Pack, or Corolla, which can be easily adapted and have a certain corporeality to them that she derives from architecture.
“My bags should accompany people throughout the day,” she says. The aspiration is one bag suited for work and going out. The basis for this is a perfect pattern, the best material, and the highest production quality.
She knows all about patterns–she trained as a women’s clothing designer and also studied philosophy and history. Her path so far has certainly been an exciting one… Eva Buchleitner has been campaigning for fashion for many years. She co-founded various initiatives in Austria and never tires of taking new paths. Since 2004 she has been sharing her knowledge at the City of Vienna fashion school in Hetzendorf. It is obviously in her blood, and she puts her heart into what she does. Presumably her brand name EVA BLUT (EVA BLOOD), with which she has been internationally successful since 1998, comes from this.
Eva Buchleitner is in the middle of developing a new wallet–simple and functionally versatile. Small leather goods are close to her heart; they have a long and strong history, especially in Vienna.
She shows me the concept of the wallet with a model made of stiff paper–this is always the first step when starting a new piece. If it works, a basic pattern is made of cardboard.
Calm and focused, she transfers the intersections to the cardboard with an awl, the Stanley knife separates these along a metal ruler. Lastly the holes are made with a hollow punch and a powerful hammerstroke. Done.
A sample sheet with material swatches and combinations is already on the table. The designer prefers an interesting mix for her collections. Calfskin is combined with mesh or with handpainted canvas, strong colors come together, closures are simple and reliable.
Who produces the bags when the design is completed, I would like to know. Eva Buchleitner tells me about the small manufacturers she works with. And that it is getting increasingly complicated, because the older people are retiring and the young people haven’t mastered the tricks of the trade yet. A kind of “translation” of the pattern has to happen for production. Everyone works slightly differently–but in the end, everything should fit perfectly. She needs the direct contact with the producers–the coordination of seemingly minor details that have an enormous impact on the quality. Fair prices are also important to her–a major challenge with every collection.
Her innovative products appeal to the active professional woman who has a clear idea of who she is and wants to combine style and function in her accessories. That is why–along with the ever-changing collections–she has the FUTURE Classics, which are always in the product line along with the VELOCITÈ bike bags.
She never runs out of ideas…her APRONS, for example, are a great item for cool new restaurants in Austria. The mother of two probably sometimes wishes for a 48-hour day to realize all her ideas.
The new collection is almost finished–in September she will present it to the international professional audience in Paris with WIEN PRODUCTS.
Time flies–I leave the studio deeply impressed and am convinced that the new EVA BLUT collection is top quality and, without a doubt, worth the walk to the shop at Kühfußgasse 2, 1010.