Stocking Stuffers - II

Bill Amberg English Vegetable Tanned Black Zip 'Round Wallet (LEO Design)

With just a few days left before Christmas, let's focus on those last-minute items—those perfect stocking-stuffers which round-out the holiday offerings.

To me, zippered wallets—any wallets with heavy metal hardware—always evoked visions of Punk Rockers (or, later, Grungesters) patrolling the East Village of yore.  Sometimes the wallet would be heavily chained to a belt loop, the metallic links swagging at just the right length, while the heavy, chromed hardware flashed crisply against the black leather.  Industrial durability meets aesthetic practicality. 

When I discovered this wallet in London (a city well-familiar with disgruntled Seventies youth culture) I envisioned it for the man who may have replaced his boyhood passions (for now) with a decent job and a kid or two.  He wants something nice—maybe even sophisticated—but rather likes the little "flash" of hardware when he pulls-out his wallet.  Perhaps it's a reminder of more-carefree days, before adult life and responsibility established their roots.

This wallet is made of vegetable-tanned calfskin by Bill Amberg, London.  With use and handling, the leather will develop a burnished glow and rich patina.  The chromed hardware is visible, though not dominant.  And a little interior "coin pocket" (meant to hold British Pound coins) provides a safe place to keep that little something special.

Of course, this wallet cannot transport a man back to his glory days.  But it may provide a discreet reminder that, deep in his psyche, smolders the embers of that youthful rebel, hoping to revisit his carefree springtime.

Click on the photo above to learn more about this wallet.


Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well!  Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (

We also can be found in Pittsburgh's historic "Strip District" at Mahla & Co. Antiques ( or in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (

Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only).  917-446-4248