If our home economics teacher gave us pieces of leather to turn into pretty clutches, we would’ve most likely aced our sewing lessons (why would a 12-year-old be eager to sew a throw pillow?). This was what we realized after spending a day putting together a leather clutch at the DIY Bespoke Your NiQUA workshop at their pop-up shop in Century City Mall.
For P1,800, you will be given a kit that will let you make your own bag from start to finish—perforated, pre-cut buttery leather rectangles, thread and screw-on fasteners—it’s like a more fun, grown-up version of paint-by-numbers, except you get a handy purse after.
The best part? There’s a debossing machine at the pop-up shop so you can also have your handmade clutch monogrammed with your initials. The workshop will be until November 1 and it’s a great way to spend the weekend with your friends, mom, or titas. There’s a reservation form on their website, but walk-ins are welcome, too.
We made one today and it’s so addictive that we want to go back this weekend to make more clutches—it’s also a great Christmas present for a loved one, and the cut of the clutch is basic enough that it can even be used by men if you pick dark-colored leather.
You can also check out Ni QUA’s other bag styles at the pop-up shop, too. One of the biggest selling points of the brand is their willingness to customize and tweak existing designs according to your preference. “We have two different kinds of customization: Bespoke Your Ni QUA and Color Your Ni QUA,” says owner and designer Bunnie de Guzman. Bespoke lets you play around with existing designs; you can turn a solid-colored bag into a two-toned bag, choose between a short or shoulder handle based on your lifestyle—you can even pick the color of the bag’s hardware. Color Your Ni QUA, meanwhile, lets you select a color from 15 available leather swatches.
One of our favorite styles from Ni QUA, Scarte, is sustainable and supports a cause, too. Scarte is the Italian word for “scrap,” and the bag is created by piecing together leather left over from other bags. The result is a gorgeous weave-like bag locked together by metal rivets. 50% of the proceeds from Scarte goes to Real Life foundation, which provides education to underprivileged communities. There are different sizes of Scarte to choose from, from a tiny pouch, a convertible shoulder clutch, a medium-sized everyday tote, to a small bag with a chain shoulder strap.
DIY Bespoke Your Ni QUA and the pop-up shop will be at Century Mall until November 1. In case you’re out of town, don’t worry, Ni QUA has plans to hold another one soon, and according to Bunnie, you can also buy the DIY leather clutches as kits that you can give away to your stylish and crafty friends this Christmas.
To know more about Ni QUA, visit www.ni-qua.com and follow them on Instagram: @niquashop.