Stephanie Harrison I Showed Up In Boots

When I turned 30, I did quite a bit of soul-searching and questioned what I was doing with my life, like many do when they hit a big milestone. I looked great on paper and enjoyed my work, but I still felt unfulfilled professionally and personally. Last summer, it was like a switch turned on. I was suddenly ready to forego everything—even my security—to purse one of my greatest dreams.
In June of last year, I started researching leather goods manufacturers based out of León, which I had heard was the mecca of leather in Mexico. I envisioned a line of handbags that reflected the exquisiteness of Mexico. Quality leather. Beautiful texture. Durability. Authenticity. And lots of fringe. Whatever vision I was trying to make come to life, I was ready to risk what little I had to make it happen.
I ended up booking a trip to León to attend a tradeshow and scope out vendors. I had absolutely zero expectations for the tradeshow since it was my first time, and while 95% of the booths were to buy shoes for the upcoming spring season, there was a small section for companies that manufactured leather accessories. As God would have it, there was only ONE booth with beautiful leather bags that had the just the type of quality I was looking for. So, I chatted up the salesperson, asked a few questions, got a business card and walked away with a bag that I bought right off the floor. I left with a good feeling, like I had found “the one.”
I would eventually take two more trips to León to meet with the vendor before deciding to really commit to launching a line of handbags and later take a design course in New York (that is for a whole other post), and now, here we are launching Au Mexique.

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