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Monday, May 19, 2014

Wilf Griese - A Designer With A Raw And Urban Approach To Classic Leather Goods

Wilf Griese is not somebody I would ordinarily come into contact with. It was a chance encounter that we should be seated opposite one another in a titty restaurant in Woolloomooloo one casual Saturday afternoon for a bux lunch that our worlds collided whilst fake tan was being smeared across the white linen by an aggressive blonde stamping her heels into the table and writhing in front of us as we tried to converse on making artisan styled products in Australia.

Although she was quite a beauty she didn't stimulate me as much as Wilf's discourse on how he came out of a long term relationship and decided to make a sea change by converting his home in the Sutherland Shire of Sydney into a workshop where he would spend restless nights pursuing various methods of craft to complete a very unique set of products.

We started flicking through his iPhone and he showed me custom bicycles that he had welded that looked like American Choppers, hand-made handbags of leathers such as Aspen Bison, metals he had cast in the shape of skulls, bullet casings he has used to adorn messenger bags and corkscrews that were over 100 years old that he'd re-worked to include his cast metal heads on them. This was fascinating stuff and if you've ever been to a titty bar before you will know that the shows usually run through a similar set of dance moves ending in the same finale.

My intention is to show more of Wilf's work over the coming weeks but as a teaser to begin with, here are some items that roughly took him 60 hours of work to complete each. Will's work runs under the label HARD and although we don't share the exact same design ethos, I am very appreciative of someone who takes the time to hone his craft like this, especially when he's a one man show.

1 comment:

  1. Wow. Impressive. The photos are fantastic. Thank you for highlighting this amazing designer!