The pursuit of usefulness

The purpose of life is to be useful. That’s our quiet endeavor. Every day.

Stanian (Large) shoulder or crossbody leather bag in deep red

Happiness is overrated. 

The purpose in life is not to be happy. Seeking happiness is why we buy stuff we don’t need, sleep with people we don’t love, and work hard for approval of people we don’t like.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “The purpose of life is not to be happy.  It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

In the five years since I launched Village England, we’ve been quietly achieving this aim. Building up a quiet and loyal following by making bags that women love because they are useful, beautiful and because they serve them well.

These are not women who are slaves to fashion. They are women who appreciate good design, gorgeous leathers, and a functionality that works for them.

Because I make each bag for myself as much as anyone else. I've been able to harness the expertise learned in my previous career with some of the world's leading leathergoods luminaries, as well as a real life of work and raising children.

And so, I understand the need for bags that can take the knocks of everyday life. Bags that can do more than one thing. Bags designed for work, for play, and everything in between. Bags that will look good season after season but aren’t so precious that you can’t toss them in the back of the car.

In our five years so far, many women have discovered and fallen in love with Village England bags and the integrity of the Village name. Women who are loyal to the Village because the Village is loyal to them.

Our bags are just better. We don’t make a fuss about it. We just deliver.

By Julia Dobson


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Village England was born out of a passion for beautiful design and the desire to capture a sense of English style.