Growing up designer Albert Chu's mother would often remind him to slow down and work through tasks one at a time. This mindful approach to reducing stress made a lasting impression on young Chu's creative mind, so much so that he's named his most recent endeavor, Otaat, after the acronym for the saying, "One thing at a time." At the heart of the limited-edition leather bag and accessories line is the inspiration of counterintuitive logic, with Chu asking himself the questions "What if?" and "Why not?" with the development of each piece.
With a Masters degree in architecture from Harvard and professional experience in the field across Europe and Asia, Chu's current aesthetic is heavily influenced by his past, resulting in supremely clean lines, soft textures and explorative designs. Through these underlying details Otaat pouches and pieces come about from the combination of curiosity and meticulous process, whimsy and function. Case in point is the leather Party Hat that speaks to the brand's focus on what it calls the "post-eureka" moment.
The unexpected but ingenious party hat showcases Chu's sense of humor and clean aesthetic. Another strong example of Chu's end goal of offering detail oriented, inventive, logical and thoughtful design is the Toby Bag, an Italian leather and waxed cotton-lined bag with multiple personalities. The T-shirt shaped bag can be zipped in various ways to form a wide, boxy tote or a tall grocery bag, or can be left undone as a luxe play mat.
Otaat's recent batch of leather bags and inventive accessories are now available to order online, with prices ranging from $75-$540. The party hat is available for pre-order online now for $75 with the more bags set for a Spring 2013 release. Also available for a limited time is Otaat's exclusive Embossed Colla Cardholder for Of a Kind.