WGSN City by City Editor Sara Radin travelled to Detroit and spent time with leather goods and watch company Shinola, which celebrates American built products and designs in-house
WGSN recently travelled to Detroit and during our visit, we got a tour of the Shinola factory and also sat down with the brand’s Creative Director, Daniel Caudill.
We picked Daniel’s brain about all things Shinola and Detroit, below:
Q: Tell us more about the story behind Shinola. How did the brand come about?
It started with the watch factory and the desire to make product in a factory in the United States. We wanted to prove we can make beautiful, well-made, well-designed product and do it all in the United States.
Q: How is Shinola redefining the factory method of production?
Something you don’t find too often is when design, pattern making, sample sewing, production, and the factory all sit next to each other under one space. There’s an opportunity here to really perfect product in a way that you can’t if you’re making product overseas.
Q: How important is it for Shinola to be headquartered in Detroit?
It was a natural fit for us to be in Detroit. The whole company is built on the shoulders of the watch factory and doing business here made sense. So it naturally evolved into the entire company being based here. Detroit has become a natural part of who we are.
Q: What do you love most about living in Detroit?
The amazing people. I feel lucky everyday to work with people at such a high level of expertise from all different aspects of the brand. I feel lucky everyday to be a part of what’s happening here.
Q: What are your favourite places around Detroit?
London Chophouse where you’ll step into 1950 and have a steak and a martini. Rose’s Fine Food for a really great breakfast. Selden Standard for dinner or an amazing lunch. Craft Work for brunch. Bronx Bar for a burger and fries. There is so much amazing design, architecture and public art in this city that is undiscovered but there’s a ton of it. It’s pretty astounding what’s here. It’s world class. I have a bike here and it’s an easy city to get around. There’s a lot to do here.
Q: What are your favourite stores around the city?
WGSN recently travelled to Detroit for our latest Design Destination report. Subscribers can get the full report here.
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