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Le Tanneur x Sarah Espeute

meeting with sarah espeute

After the success of our first collaboration, a series of tablecloths inspired by the Mediterranean, the Marseille-based artist-designer is now showing us the full extent of her talent with two pieces in canvas and leather: a 125 tote bag and a clutch bag, two embroidered pieces combining summer mellowness and beautiful materials.

Designed in the Pays de la Loire region, these creations are inspired by everyday delights and make a poignant contribution to the reputation of French craftsmanship. These are uncommon, high-end and truly timeless pieces. A real lesson in style, as Sarah explains in this interview.

What can you tell us about the embroidery on these pieces?

I was inspired by the Riviera, the Côte d'Azur. It was the shape of the bag that really drew me to this type of illustration. This sand-coloured tote bag made from beach fabric took me there straight away. And this vegetation is inspired by the world of Matisse. You'll see his decoupage-style leaves, transcribed in my own way, with a minimalist, elegant line that wanders around. I'm not someone who works with bright colours; my signature style is more black and white.

These two colours really stand out against the cream colour of this fabric. The result is a timeless bag that adds a touch of summer all year round, and can be worn with any casual outfit. It's elegant, unpretentious and simple. The clutch bag features the same design, but in negative. When you put the tote bag and clutch bag next to each other, you find the same motifs, on the same scale, except that the colours are reversed.

What's interesting about the mix of materials in these pieces?

What's interesting is the leatherused to frame the illustration. It surrounds the cloth that features theembroidery. I like the fact that this material takes up most of the space andthat we're not talking about an all-cloth bag. The leather gives the bag atruly premium feel, thanks largely to its welcoming colour, which contrastswith and sets off the fabric. The colours work perfectly together.

Is there anything about these pieces that particularly deserves ourattention? 

I really like the Le Tanneur coat of arms, which is somewhat subtle and repeats the logo in a different way. Here it becomes an illustration, a really graphic element. It's also on the clutch bag. It's the same type of embroidery as my tablecloths, so it's really an extension of my other work.

What do you think of this type of collaboration, which is an intermingling of different kinds of expertise?

These pieces combine the coarseness of embroidery with the elegance of leather goods. They are perfect examples of handcrafted creations. The leather gives the embroidery a luxury feel and there's something very special about these pieces that makes you want to keep them. And for good reason: this is really about promoting French craftsmanship. I think it's great that Le Tanneur is making the effort to design and produce pieces like this.