Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Aspinal of London, another psuedo brand for the masses.

Todays Pseudo is Aspinal of london, a leather goods company with a very similar ideal to Pickett who I recently wrote about.

Although Aspinal, it must be said, are not quite so good at presenting the established brand image, a quick visit to their website will demonstrate that they seem a bit confused as to exactly where their brand is coming from, on the one hand they discuss their products as high quality leather goods, and on the other hand they have a slightly plasticky sheen to their presentation and image.

It seems there are many brands of this type around, and their always will continue to be so, I guess the owners of these brands just decide at some point in their lives, "oh leather goods, thats a good business to go into, easy to make money all you need to do is pretend to be established", and off they go. I believe the business they are all aspiring to follow in the footsteps of is (as I said in my pickett post) Swaine Adeney Brigg, but they inevitably end up being a clone of another well known and established Leather goods maker - Daines and Hathaway.

I will write in detail about Daines Hathaway another time, but essentially they are a high quality, reasonably priced leather goods manafacturer, that are basically quite dull, who also produce items for other people with their branding on, I believe they used to produce Fortnums Products.

Anyway back to Aspinal, I don't know when they were started, but I have not seen them around for more than 10 years. They used to advertise in the back of GQ and esquire, presumably attempting to slowly build their brand rep, I also remember they used to advertise their travel wallets a great deal, touting the price as a selling point, no doubt they wish to try and get customers from the likes of smythson with that particular targetted campaign, as smythsons travel wallet is one of their signature pieces. However Aspinal misunderstood the fundamental fact that less expensive is NOT a motivating factor for luxury purchases, far from it is the factor which may loose customers, and now they are sold in Harrods, Fortnum and Mason and various other boutiques. Based in Surrey, England, they produce, as stated leather goods and accessories, now they have started to also produce bags and briefcases. None of them are in my opinion very nice, as I said they all have a slightly plasticky sheen.

Nevertheless they seem to have been sort of accepted as a brand that can be used and be proud of, as I see them now being featured in the product selections of magazines like Esquire, vogue and various others.

Well good luck to them, they have done what they set out to do when they started, which is establish themselves - sort of - but in my mind they have a LONG way to go before they can count themselves as established.

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