The Chic Duffle Bag Handcrafted By A Saddlery In Matamata
Get to know Rupert Langton, the made-to-order bag line supporting local craftsmanship
We’re fans of packing light, and on our next domestic sojourn, we’re attracted to the easy duffle bag created by Matamata-based designer William Rupert Langton Hyndman.
Having finessed his perfect duffle bag over the years, William’s “Rupert Duffle” has been crafted to last a lifetime - made with waterproof and industrial-grade canvas, the bag is finished with tactile New Zealand leather and solid brass hardware details that William has been working on with a local saddlery.
Even better, it’s the type of bag that gets better as it ages, a concept with which we can get on board. Featuring in William’s latest campaign is close friend and 90s Versace campaign model Kylie Bax.
You've been working on Rupert Langton for some time now - how many years has it been and what have been some of the fun evolutions that have happened since?
I first started working on Rupert in 2012 when I would hand make the duffles myself in the garage after work. When I moved to Auckland in 2015 they had a slight hiatus before I found some lovely ladies in a factory in Avondale who helped me make them until they sadly closed.
Now in Matamata, the amazing team at Gregory Equine Saddlery hand make each and every one. There are several local businesses that go into them from the canvas and leather suppliers to the embroiderer and its fun to work with them all.
How long does it take to complete one bag?
As each bag is made to order, it takes about two weeks. After they are made at the saddlery they go to the local auto trimmer to be embroidered with the recipient's monogram.
The bags encourage people to value their belongings, and we can see that with time, they will age well. What are your thoughts on how accessory designers in particular can contribute to designing and running a sustainable business?
With Rupert, it has always been about the quality of the materials and the lasting way they are put together. Any avenue of production that compromised this never felt right, which is why I'm so lucky things have come together in the way they have. I really value the idea that the duffles can be produced as needed with a lifetime of use in mind. I think anything can be thought of this way and made to be especially special and long-lasting.
As someone with an eye for design, what's inspiring you right now?
I'm always inspired by womenswear and have my favourite designers but over lockdown, I was talking to Kylie (Bax) a lot and spent hours looking over her 90s editorials and campaigns.
They are incredibly inspiring and so timeless.
You've got three beautiful colourways - what do you love about the colours you've decided on?
The black canvas is so soft in its colour, and it wears beautifully with use, almost like denim. The tan is crisp and chic, and the olive green has an aristocratic feel to it.
What are some of your favourite things to do in Matamata?
Visit Workmans Cafe (huge fun when my dog Syd is there too) and a walk up the Kaimai Ranges - they are magical.
How long have you known Kylie for and why did you tap her to be part of this launch?
I met Kylie late last year as we are both in the thoroughbred industry but I have been a long time fan of her and her work and I am so inspired by her legacy. I was keen to bring that energy to this shoot and it all came together perfectly. Rupertlangton.com