There’s nothing quite so timeless or versatile as leather. From the professional’s leather briefcase, to the rebel’s leather jacket or the uptown girl’s leather handbag, it’s something we can all agree on.
It’s also been around almost literally forever. When you think about it, mankind started using animal skins long before the first textiles ever existed.
But because it is so versatile, so malleable and easy to transform, leather is and always will be a very modern material, and that’s where Montreal-based Rudsak comes in.
Launched in Montreal in 1994, the leather goods label has earned a reputation for its sleek, city-inspired designs. Rather than bind itself to tradition, it’s adopted an haute-couture identity, rather than typecast itself solely based on craft of trade.
It’s not that heritage or craftsmanship aren’t important to Rudsak. As Rudsak founder Evik Asatoorian told AskMen, “We try to keep [it] as timeless as possible, but certain elements will be updated, or become better [...] today the beauty is that tanners have learned how to do it so well that you can actually make the garment look 50 years older than it is.”
Nonetheless, Rudsak favors a slick, urban aesthetic with international appeal. It’s already opened stores in Toronto, though its plans for the future have a much wider scope.
“The beauty of our label is that we try not to be only Canadian,” Asatoorian says. “We think about Europe a lot. We think about Russia now. Our sales associate has gone to trade shows and is amazed; he comes back and says, ‘This product is totally Russia and totally Germany, totally Dubai…’”
With showings at Montreal Fashion Week and Toronto Fashion week, and collaborations with major events like the Sundance Film Festival and MTV Movie awards, Rudsak has taught us something new: leather doesn’t always have to be a compliment to fashion, it can be fashion in its own right.