This week we’re traveling to London, England to introduce French maker Geoffrey Merlet of the handcrafted bag and purse boutique Le Chant Du Robot. Geoffrey’s unique vision and quality craftsmanship offer a truly one-of-a-kind option for his customers who seek a bold statement through the use of striking color and tailored design while staying true to a functional product. Since Le Chant Du Robot bags are handmade, there is an element of limited access which drives demand and in turn creates an opportunity for buyers to build their collection such as one would collect works of art. When you see Geoffrey’s passion, you’ll understand what we mean!
My day starts with…
“A good breakfast with freshly ground coffee, a homemade cake and a glass of apple juice…and then I’m ready for a long working day.”
I fell in love with making goods when…
“I was a child watching my father making goods. He can do everything you need with nothing and always finds a solution to every problem. He passed down that passion to me.”
When I’m in my studio, I feel…
“Free. I work from home and it’s the best place to me. I usually work from 8:30a.m. to 10:30p.m., so I need to be in a place I feel good.”
What influences or inspires your work and why?
“I’m very observant and passionate about cultures, design and music. Beauty is everywhere and the wealth and multiculturalism of London is a gift. My small travels and nature are also very important to re-energize and come back with plenty of new ideas.”
What’s in your toolbox as a maker?
“I need a big toolbox because my best friend is a sewing machine…but my small sewing kit is also following me everywhere.”
My proudest accomplishment over the last year is…
“To run my small business and develop it slowly. Every month I’m contacted by a few new retailers which is very encouraging for the future.”
What piece of your wardrobe best represents your style?
“My adidas Samba. I’ve always bought the same shoes for 15 years and I love them. They’re a bit vintage, classic and perfect to walk over the big city of London.”
Before starting a small business, I wish someone had told me…
“To be patient, work hard and be persistent.”
How does Spoonflower meet your business needs?
“Because my bags are unique, I always need to find new patterns and the infinity of designers present on Spoonflower help me in this task. It also offers me the possibility to print my own patterns to make special collections.”
What has been an important resource to you as a small business owner and why?
“The most important thing to me to keep running a small business is a good family and friend circle. Sometimes it can be so hard that you need someone on your side. My partner with whom I’ve share my life for 16 years is always here to help me and she’s totally involved in the adventure, even if she has her own job as a researcher in sciences. My parents have also supported my project since the beginning and are always here to assist.”
My favorite Spoonflower textile to work with is…
“The Organic Cotton Sateen Ultra because it’s a good quality and the thickness is just what I need for my bags.”
If there ever was a wonderland of beautiful handbags, we’re calling it now. Visit Geoffrey’s Instagram account (@lechantdurobot) and prepare to be inspired! Not to mention there are always new products underway in his studio, so be sure to regularly check his online store for the newest product launches.