Altari, new London-based handbag brand, is on a mission to save ancient craftsmanship. The designs merge leather mosaics, hand-stitched with a technique dating back over 1000 years, and modern shapes to create distinctive, chic and feminine handbags. Altari is a cultural take on modern luxury.
The Altari collection is designed in London and Paris. Handbags are made in Italy where the brand sources fine Italian calf leather and gold-plated, hand-brushed brass fittings. All leather mosaics are hand-stitched according to ancient methods in Tatarstan, Russia.
The collection consists of three designs, the Madina, the Venera and the Carla. Altari is taken pre-orders for all Madina (£660) and Venera (£950) models starting in April; orders will be delivered starting May 2019.
Purchases can be made directly from the Altari website.
Co-founders Elvira Ganieva and Alessio Villanacci say: “We are immensely proud of bringing to market distinctive designs with a clear purpose, a soul, that represent the mix of our rich cultures and heritage. In reflection of our relationship, Altari builds bridges to create a new generation of luxury products that bring the ancient craft to relevance.”
Only few artisans remain who possess the skills to craft leather mosaics – each one requires several days of meticulous handwork to complete the thousands of stitches that bind a mosaic. This degree of craftsmanship makes each Altari handbag non-repeatable and each collection limited in nature.
The brand is taking meaningful steps to revive the intrinsic value of vanishing craftsmanship. In line with its mission, Altari has pledged 5% of revenue towards training the new generation of leather mosaic artisans.
Altari is the pioneer of cultural luxury. The brand embodies the artistic culture and ingenuity of founders Elvira Ganieva and Alessio Villanacci. Theirs is a story of connecting worlds and preserving cultures to deepen and redefine what it means to shop for luxury leather handbags.
Like its founders, Altari represents a confluence of east and west. Alessio has his roots near Naples, in Southern Italy, at the very core of Italy’s artisanal ‘savoir faire’. Elvira was brought up in Tatarstan, a haven for ‘eastern’ culture in the center of Russia and home to the art of leather mosaics – a fusion of Central Asian patterns and Tatar stitching techniques that date back to the 7th century.
In reflection of its founders, Altari is a metaphor for cultural innovation. At Altari, contemporary glamour and unparalleled craftsmanship are underlined by artisanal tradition. In purchasing an Altari design you’re not simply buying another handbag. You’re acquiring a unique piece of art, our shared human cultural heritage, and preserving its existence for future generations to live and discover.