H&B London is the kind of brand you might expect to find in England. Small and smartly turned out, the firm produces exclusive luxury goods in small batches. Launched this year, they currently offer two styles of mens wallets – breast pocket and billfold – and a range of geometrically unique sterling silver cufflinks. Though grounded in traditional artisanship, H&B is not staid per se, even though its client list includes members of the British royal family.
Founder and Managing Director, Stephen Brister, told us that the company’s primary commitment to real luxury. “Part of the reason I founded the company was because I was disillusioned with the poor quality of products that were being sold by mainstream luxury brands,” he said. “For me luxury means the highest quality materials crafted by the finest artisans to make something rare and exclusive. So quality and craftsmanship are very much part of the DNA of H&B London.”
OTC has been using the British Racing Green Breast Pocket Wallet daily for about one month and, in a word, we find it to be exceptional. The size and layout are traditional, with eight card slots and three receipt/currency pockets. Nothing feels cramped or crowded; credit cards easily glide in and out of their spaces and the main currency pocket is easy to access. Though, as noted above, the structure of the wallet is traditional, it is very much contemporary in nuance and finish. It is a classic wallet, yes, but not old-fashioned. Perhaps the word which best describes it is “elegant.”
What truly sets this wallet apart from others we have tested is the quality of the craftsmanship and materials. Each H&B London wallet is handmade in London by one of only three craftsman. The leather is impeccably smooth and supple and the wallet’s refined construction provides a firm structure without feeling stiff or unyielding.
The finish on our British Racing Green wallet is both rich and translucent, allowing the natural pattern of the flawless hide to come through. Brister feels that a luxury product should be made from the finest materials, be rare and exclusive, and adhere to exceedingly high standards. For example, H&B London’s leather goods are made from the most exclusive Italian leather from the hides of cattle grazed in the Alps where there are no barbed fences or mosquitoes to blemish their skin. By definition, that’s a small universe of leather supply.
H&B London started with wallets because, perhaps more than any other male accessory, one’s wallet is used and handled daily. Ours has aged gently and beautifully, acquiring the inevitable nicks and bumps of life that only add to its distinguished patina.
The firm is also happy to accommodate bespoke orders, making anything from briefcases or handbags to wallets and purses. You can email them directly at email@example.com or call them on +44(0)20 8546 4775.