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Design Talk #1

BRIEFING Designer Shinshu Kosuzume

Born in Tokyo in 1966. After working as a planning designer for a major bag manufacturer, he joined Seltz Corporation (now Union Gate Group Co., Ltd.) in 1999. Since then, he has been involved in the design direction of BRIEFING as a designer.

 

BRIEFING MADE IN USA – An Origin Story

It all started with the idea to create bags that combine unprecedented durability and functionality, that are built to mil-spec standards, bags that work in the concrete jungle and the great outdoors alike. Our rugged bags are made of strong ballistic nylon which was a perfect match for the business scene in Japan, which is often said to be harsher than any battlefield, and quickly gained a cult following. The appeal of our bag is still going strong, as we outgrew the offices of Tokyo and connected with everyone who wanted a bag for life, something fashionable, yet indestructible.

Our chief designer, Kosuzume Shinshu, explains the ever-lasting appeal of his collection. The "Made in USA" collection is filled with a variety of specialities that can only be produced in the United States. In particular, the use of ballistic nylon, which was used for bulletproof vests, and the iconic red line on the nylon tape constitutes the identity of our brand which we have not changed – even now, about 20 years after the brand was born.

Over the past 20 years, our brand has evolved step by step.

It’s been a steady evolution but it doesn't mean that nothing has changed. People's lifestyles are changing every day. In the business scene, the silhouette of a contemporary suit hardly compares to what people wore 20 years ago. They have become more casual, and it is harder to fit them in a tightly fitted bag. Computers are getting thinner, lighter, and smaller, and in some cases, a single smartphone is all you need. I also feel that the boundary between work and private life is disappearing. As a result, bags do not need to have the same specifications as in the past, but they need to be more compact, easy to use, and suitable for all occasions. That's why we are refining the 'Made in USA’ collection to match the times. For example, the metal parts that were used when the brand was first established have been replaced with lighter and tougher plastic parts, Many of our bags have stylish outer pockets, created for ease of use and better accessibility. As I use our bags, I constantly come up with new ideas that match the times. That's why I don't think I'll ever be 100% satisfied – evolution never stops!

What are the new possibilities of "Made in USA"?

As for the future of the "Made in USA" brand, Kosuzume Shinshu already has a few ideas in mind. Compared to 20 years ago, the world's materials, sewing and cutting techniques have evolved dramatically. For example, the latest laser cutting technology is used for cutting beautifully with less fraying of the cross-section. New technologies always allow for new designs! Another thing is the development of updated versions of the most popular items from the "Made in USA" archives so far. I would also like to explore the new possibilities of "Made in USA" by comparing the past and present of BRIEFING. However, if there are no rules, anything goes, so I would like to continue to reflect my own way of thinking on items through the brand's filter without wavering as a brand."

Shop our USA Collection here.