The project

each trip follows a storyline
Paola Peila, before being a fashion designer, is first and foremost, travelled widely crossing borders in search of originality and novelty. Together with the tastes and skills learned at her mother’s knee in her sewing room, Paola enhances these fabrics by up-cycling them, reviving an old-fashioned bag with a modern twist: the Peila bag. The Peila bag pays tribute to family traditions and its creator, and, at the same time, honours diverse cultures from near and far, uniting all with craftsmanship of the highest quality.

Text and images by Paola Peila
The idea of making this bag comes from a childhood memory: my grandmother, holding an oversized fabric bag, leaving on foot or bike through the Italian countryside. She was an energetic woman, who, in spite of all of her household chores, managed to carve out free time. The bag, which she had made, was always full and close at hand.
In my travels around the world, I have followed my passion for textiles and fabrics and had the pleasure of buying them directly from the place of their production. Once back home, in my mother’s sewing room, these fabrics were turned into my “originals” – a wardrobe of jackets, shirts, dresses, skirts, and more that were the envy of my friends and helped to prolong the experience I had just had.

Among my most vivid memories: the silk bought at the market of Kashgar where, in the 90s, I saw the purchase price of a sheep set by both parties involved hefting it in their arms to estimate its weight, thus its value; riding a bike in the countryside outside Kathmandu, I saw local women dyeing colourful cottons; in a Tamil Nadu handicraft center, I saw silk saris being woven on hand looms; after returning from a climb in the Cordillera Blanca, I enjoyed the colourful paintings in the Huaraz market.

Strict attention to fabric choice, not only its quality but also its suitability for the final product we had in mind and the appropriate colour, is, without a doubt, a lesson from my mother. As teenagers, my sister and I were often exasperated by our mother’s demands in selecting fabric for our clothes; she was adamant that we choose only a few pieces of the highest quality and that it be one hundred percent pure wool, cotton or silk with interesting colours and patterns. Only years later, after outgrowing our rebellious independence, have we come to realize that our mother was right all along.

The Peila bag reflects a blend of memories, maternal lessons, and experiences and the sheer pleasure in its creation. Evolving from the rustic cloth bag used by the women in the valleys and countryside in Italy, the Peila bag is reversible with adjustable-length fabric handles, equally adaptable for a modern cosmopolitan lifestyle or a simple stroll in the country.

Each Peila bag is a unique creation in color, design and fabric, handcrafted in Italy. Its basic concept is one of mixing different fabrics, each with a story, and charming colors, combining a variety of far-flung cultural traditions.

The Peila bag, created and made in Italy, can be seen in use the world over.

All Collections

The prototypes
Very first collection
First Summer
Fil Collection
Winter Oregon Collection
Mistral Collection