How TOMME reinterprets statement basketballs into bags.
TOMBOY x FEMME x HOMME = TOMME.
A rising brand that aims to combine genderless and unusual references by handcrafting basketballs into handbags.
Born from brand designer Kelly Gunner's own story with the game (both as player & enthusiast 🏀) the project merges the synergy of how she expressed herself and how she felt when playing her fave sport: strong and unstoppable.
"The bags kind of evolve with you as you wear them, and they have a story, I think. I love the fact that you can get that story out of something like a leather material, whether it's a basketball or it's a normal piece of leather."
Sourcing the most distinguished balls from all over the world, the creative reinterprets each statement design from brands like Nike, Jordan and Wilson as an exclusive accessory, inspired by the freshest street styles and even matching with high-end brands like Prada (engraved with diamond-like studs) or doing collabs like the one with Space Jam.
"Basketballs are built to last, even when they've been played with, there's something really cool and really unique about the texture after they've been played with. The wornout-ness kind of gives you a different feel, and different story to it."
Already been seen in the hands of celebs like Billie Eilish, who matched a full Gucci outfit with a perfectly round shoulder bag that once was only a Kuangmi ball. Colorblocked with bright hues, GG-inspired monograms, zips, and straps prove how boundless Kelly's creative mind can get.
Read below our chat with TOMME'S designer and get closer to the process. 👇
How do you feel about leather as this reliable canvas for your creativity? What are your perceptions of this material?
It's such a flexible material, so I obviously do what I do with it. The factory sends me panels that are damaged, so they don't actually get to the stage of being put into the basketball rubber. They're just leather-printed panels.
"It's super useful, a flexible material that translates into what I do and can react differently when they're cut, and it can be reused for other things."
You have already made bags for high-end brands and Maisons. Meanwhile, you have to create pieces from other people's ideas as well, so how do you connect both of these things?
There's always a connection between streetwear and basketball, inherently. And obviously, you've seen it. Streetwear generally is kind of meshing out with high-end designer streetwear.
"I try to seek out those labels that are really unique, or as unique as possible, other than the ones that I make, where I can decide how unique they are, to make them collectible, to make them special."
You know, to give people something to want to collect, to have. And make it a bit like sneakers, where people are waiting for that drop, they're waiting for that special pair of sneakers. So with TOMME, you have people from all areas of fashion that are all into something that kind of makes you feel good, looks good, and is unique.
"People want to buy things that aren't fast-fashion, and there are people that just want something that is really premium, high-end, that reflects them. They like the uniqueness of it, and they're into the culture around basketball and streetwear."
Buy their bags and get to know more about at tommestudio.com
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