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Featured Shop: Jenny N. Design

Dec 6, 2013

by Jenny Nemlekar

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Hi! I’m Jenny Nemlekar, and I’m the one-woman show at Jenny N. Design, where I design, make, photograph, model and live and breathe handbags. I operate out of my in-laws’ basement in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, while my pug, Hubert, keeps me company. My husband, Shay, is my tough business decision-maker, source of sanity, data analytics guy, and male model (if I nag him enough).

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I started making tote bags (something I learned from my mom when I was six) in my college dorm room, and it soon became an addiction. Ironically, earning a bachelors of science in biomedical engineering solidified what I really wanted to do: be my own boss. I figured owning a business would give me the opportunity to do what inspired me, while creating the flexibility to work my own hours and move anywhere around the world. I didn’t realize at the time was that owning a business is a 24/7 commitment and that industrial sewing machines and leather hides are really heavy to move, but that’s besides the point.

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I am an artist by nature and an engineer by discipline, so my business is the fusion of my personal artistic aesthetic and the engineering principles I adopted throughout my education. My designs are inspired by food, fashion and life in general. For example, after following Shay’s favorite basketball team for a season, I couldn’t help but think how cute it would be to bolt snap the three-point line to the center court line. Thus, I designed the Clutch. Other examples include the Traveler, which is inspired by an envelope from a wedding invitation, or the Ruche, which is inspired by a combination of a bubble skirt and a Chinese dumpling.

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I design my bags by sketching out the final silhouette, then reverse-engineering the design to create a template. I cut a whole leather hide into a stack of geometric shapes that culminate into a design when sewn, lined, and riveted. I try to standardize my templates so I use every inch of the beautiful materials I work with. Once a bag is ready, I take a brief moment to feel like a proud mom before giving it a final hug goodbye, and then packaging it to be shipped away to a loving new home.

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I believe that a great shopping experience is very much like a great dining experience: you want a delicious product made from high-quality ingredients presented with high-quality service. I run my business so that my customers love my designs and come back because of my customer service.

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After graduating in 2009, I jumped head-first into making and selling my handbags full-time on Etsy. Back then, I was an engineer who was crafty. Now I’m proud to say I am a craftswoman with a strong foundation in engineering. Etsy has allowed me to turn my hobby into my full-time job, and I feel fortunate that I can do what I love every single day (including weekends!).

All photographs by Jenny N. Design.

Professional Backpack, Laptop Backpack, Gray Canvas, Brown Leather, Work Backpack, Back to School, JennyNDesign, Handmade USA
Professional Backpack, Laptop Backpack, Gray Canvas, Brown Leather, Work Backpack, Back to School, JennyNDesign, Handmade USA
JennyNDesign
$253.00 USD
Professional Backpack, Mens Leather Canvas Backpack, Womens Laptop Backpack, Grad School Bag, School Backpack, 17 inch Laptop Backpack, MTO
Professional Backpack, Mens Leather Canvas Backpack, Womens Laptop Backpack, Grad School Bag, School Backpack, 17 inch Laptop Backpack, MTO
JennyNDesign
$253.00 USD
Leather Laptop Bag, Leather Tote, Professional Leather Bag, Attorney Bag, Large Leather Tote, Chestnut Briefcase, Archive Bag
Leather Laptop Bag, Leather Tote, Professional Leather Bag, Attorney Bag, Large Leather Tote, Chestnut Briefcase, Archive Bag
JennyNDesign
$325.00 USD
Tote Bag, Canvas Leather Tote, Laptop Briefcase, Archive Bag, Gray Canvas, Brown Leather, Back to School, Jenny N Design
Tote Bag, Canvas Leather Tote, Laptop Briefcase, Archive Bag, Gray Canvas, Brown Leather, Back to School, Jenny N Design
JennyNDesign
$264.00 USD
Backpack Mini in Black Canvas and Dark Roast Brown Leather Accents - Travel Bike Bag - Canvas Backpack - Made to Order
Backpack Mini in Black Canvas and Dark Roast Brown Leather Accents - Travel Bike Bag - Canvas Backpack - Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$188.00 USD
Professional Backpack, Back to School, Laptop Backpack, Gray Canvas Backpack, Brown Leather, Work Backpack, Jenny N Design, Made to Order
Professional Backpack, Back to School, Laptop Backpack, Gray Canvas Backpack, Brown Leather, Work Backpack, Jenny N Design, Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$253.00 USD
Mens Leather Briefcase, 17 inch Laptop Bag, Mens Briefcase, Womens Briefcase, Womens Laptop Bag, Attorney Laptop Bag, Professional Briefcase
Mens Leather Briefcase, 17 inch Laptop Bag, Mens Briefcase, Womens Briefcase, Womens Laptop Bag, Attorney Laptop Bag, Professional Briefcase
JennyNDesign
$283.00 USD
Backpack Mini in Gray Canvas and Chestnut Brown Leather Trim - Travel Bike Bag - Canvas Backpack - Made to Order
Backpack Mini in Gray Canvas and Chestnut Brown Leather Trim - Travel Bike Bag - Canvas Backpack - Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$188.00 USD
Leather Scraps by the Pound, assorted genuine top grain full grain upholstery leather scraps, leather remnants
Leather Scraps by the Pound, assorted genuine top grain full grain upholstery leather scraps, leather remnants
JennyNDesign
$18.00 USD
Fanny Pack, Leather Hip Bag, Hip Bag, Bum Bag, Waist Bag, Modern Fanny Pack, Stylish Fanny Pack, Traveler in Chestnut
Fanny Pack, Leather Hip Bag, Hip Bag, Bum Bag, Waist Bag, Modern Fanny Pack, Stylish Fanny Pack, Traveler in Chestnut
JennyNDesign
$81.00 USD
Fanny Pack, Leather Hip Bag, Hip Bag, Bum Bag, Waist Bag, Belt Bag, Boho Chic Style, Traveler in Chestnut Brown Leather
Fanny Pack, Leather Hip Bag, Hip Bag, Bum Bag, Waist Bag, Belt Bag, Boho Chic Style, Traveler in Chestnut Brown Leather
JennyNDesign
$81.00 USD
Sample Swatch
Sample Swatch
JennyNDesign
$1.00 USD
Add On: Luggage Sleeve Upgrade - ONLY use for Custom Archive, Briefcase, Backpack
Add On: Luggage Sleeve Upgrade - ONLY use for Custom Archive, Briefcase, Backpack
JennyNDesign
$28.00 USD
Custom Canvas Archive Tote - Monogrammed Laptop Briefcase Attorney Bag in Canvas and Leather - Archive Bag - Made to Order - Custom Bag
Custom Canvas Archive Tote - Monogrammed Laptop Briefcase Attorney Bag in Canvas and Leather - Archive Bag - Made to Order - Custom Bag
JennyNDesign
$264.00 USD
Custom Leather Crossbody Clutch, Leather Clutch, Crossbody Bag, Summer Bag, Clutch, Zipper Clutch, Convertible Clutch, Made to Order
Custom Leather Crossbody Clutch, Leather Clutch, Crossbody Bag, Summer Bag, Clutch, Zipper Clutch, Convertible Clutch, Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$114.00 USD
Leather Backpack in Wheat Beige Chestnut Brown, Messenger Convertible, Laptop Backpack, Professional Backpack, 17 inch Laptop Backpack
Leather Backpack in Wheat Beige Chestnut Brown, Messenger Convertible, Laptop Backpack, Professional Backpack, 17 inch Laptop Backpack
JennyNDesign
$376.00 USD
Custom Canvas Backpack Mini, Small Leather Backpack, Travel Bike Bag, Scout Pack, Canvas Backpack, Made to Order
Custom Canvas Backpack Mini, Small Leather Backpack, Travel Bike Bag, Scout Pack, Canvas Backpack, Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$197.00 USD
Bucket Bag in Chestnut Brown Leather - Crossbody Bag - Zipper Closure - Leather Tassel - Everyday Bag - Jenny N. Design - Made to Order
Bucket Bag in Chestnut Brown Leather - Crossbody Bag - Zipper Closure - Leather Tassel - Everyday Bag - Jenny N. Design - Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$268.00 USD
Custom Leather Archive Tote - Monogrammed Leather Laptop Briefcase Attorney Bag in Leather - Archive Bag Style - Made to Order - Custom Bag
Custom Leather Archive Tote - Monogrammed Leather Laptop Briefcase Attorney Bag in Leather - Archive Bag Style - Made to Order - Custom Bag
JennyNDesign
$351.00 USD
Crossbody Clutch in Chestnut, Black, and Beige, Leather Clutch, Leather Tassel, Crossbody Clutch, Crossbody Bag, Clutch, Made to Order
Crossbody Clutch in Chestnut, Black, and Beige, Leather Clutch, Leather Tassel, Crossbody Clutch, Crossbody Bag, Clutch, Made to Order
JennyNDesign
$112.00 USD

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