A Simple PlanIn Lin and Xuan’s own words: “Nil Naux is a bag brand without an exciting story. The brand was born with the aim to make down-to-earth bags”. We talked about their collection with the two Chinese designers based in Milano. While working as a project manager for a Chinese company, Xuan took a group of technicians to ARSUTORIA school for the training course. There, she fell in love with the charm of leather, so, later on, she quit her job and took the bag making course at the Milanese school.
Which skills and focus do you think the ARSUTORIA school’s course gave you that stayed with you and helped with your work?
I really enjoyed the learning process and I was certain that this is the work I would like to do for life. What I have learned is not only the technical know-hows, but more importantly the Italian artisan mind-set: to make something good, every single segment during the production has to be precise. The time and work needed shall not be underestimated. The detail matters a lot, do not try to skip any step. So here we are, me and my close friend Lin, with our own bag studio.
How would you describe the style of your products? Which materials do you prefer to use?
Words that come to mind if I had to describe our products: understatement, simple, clean, practical, light, timeless. Our brand keywords are “real” and “honest”.
Regarding our materials, we use premium leathers mostly from Tuscany (vitellino, vitello, capretto, capra and other types of skins). Veg-tanned leather is our personal favourite, but we also use mixed-tanned or chemical tanned leathers depending on different designs and types of accessories.
We want our bags to stay simple, light, practical and timeless, thus we select leathers with no coating or only very basic coating, and we try very hard to use fewer decorations, less glue, less stiffener and especially fewer metal parts.
Where do you find the inspiration to create, beside the fashion world?
We get inspiration from everything in our lives. What we design and make is the comprehensive output of our experience and understanding of life. For example, the CinCin key case is inspired by the shape of wine glasses, and the Dice collection is inspired by the process of peeling a potato. Actually, we have to admit that our passion is not focused in fashion and Nil Naux is not really positioned as a fashion brand, because it does not follow seasonal trends: honestly we don’t really care about “looking fashionable” or ‘being trendy’.
Any future plans or projects you would like to share with us?
At the moment, we are preparing for an art and design exhibition later this year. The concept is to use leather as the material to re-make a series of household commodities from the 90s, to highlight the concept of making leather goods return to a simple matter-of-factness.