In the world of menswear accessories, it's a known fact that belts don't get the respect they deserve. Eyewear, neckwear and wristwear have all had their moment in the limelight, but somehow, belts always seem to get looked over in the hierarchy of essential sartorial accoutrements. It's not a lost cause though, there are a few fresh brands on the scene that are lasered in on creating a renaissance in the belt market, and one of them is the aptly named brand Beltology. This new label has a DNA that originates from both Sweden & NYC, and its founders are bent on creating a new paradigm in the way men view and purchase belts. We had a conversation with the brand's Creative Director, Anna Lundberg - check it out below ...
How did the brand start and who are the founders behind it?
We founded Beltology on the idea that the belt was a forgotten & overlooked accessory. After noticing the lack of effort men put into furnishing their waists, coupled with the absence of any standout standalone direct-to-consumer belt brand, we created Beltology to fill the void. In the summer of 2013, fashion entrepreneur Andrew Heffernan and myself became aware of the remarkable growth of the men’s accessories market but equally surprised by how the belt had been left behind. Inspired by other direct-to-consumer, mono-product brands like Warby Parker, Bonobos & Harry’s, Andrew & I went about creating one of our own. With the vision to change an everyday essential into a statement accessory, Beltology was launched in early 2014.
Every man needs a belt but it’s not really a priority when they go shopping – do you think Beltology can alter this cavalier attitude towards belts?
In the same way that Swatch changed how we look at the watch or how Havaiana changed how we look at flip-flops, Beltology intends to change how men think about, buy and collect belts.
Where are your belts made, and can you explain more about the fabrication?
The Beltology belt is different from your traditional leather belt. There are no holes, as the prong passes smoothly through the elastic webbing, allowing for a remarkably comfortable & adjustable fit. The elastic inner gives the belt the ability to stretch up to 2-3 inches of its original length. All Beltology belts are hand finished & go through a rigorous quality control. Our belts are sourced out of Hong Kong and made in a factory in the Guangdong Province of China. The belts are all made of a stretch woven fabric, either waxed cotton or rayon for the most part. They are finished with a genuine full grain leather trim and a heavyset buckle.
What is the design process like – do you have a full team of designers?
Our design process is rooted in the deep traditions of menswear. We have created our take on herringbone, pinhead, and pinstripe patterns. We never compromise in the use of premium materials but at the same time deliver a top quality product within a very reasonable price point.
Do you create new collections for each season or do you just have a basic offering of belts available year round?
We will keep about 20 – 25 classic styles in our offer at all times, this will be our ‘never-out-of-stock’ then each year we will produce seasonal offers based on trends. In addition, we will be working on limited edition capsule collections with guest designers.
Talk to us about the price points – your belts are very reasonably-priced – what was the reasoning behind this approach?
We believe that high style does not have to come at a high price. By selling primarily direct to consumer from our own website, it allows us to deliver a top quality product at a reasonable price.
Where are the belts sold – can people find them online and/or physical locations?
Online only at www.beltology.com for now. We are considering different distributions strategies for next year.
Can you explain the Swedish-NYC connection of the brand?
Andrew & I met a few years ago while studying at Parsons in NYC. I am Swedish and I spend a lot of time in Sweden getting inspired by the local style and design.
Do you see yourselves offering high quality leather belts in the future?
We will never sell boring belts!
Lastly, what do you envision for the brand in the next 5-10 years?
Our vision is to change the way people around the world think about and buy belts. Like Swatch or Stance Socks or Havaianas or Raybans, we intend to stay focused on a single product. We aim eventually to be sold in multiple countries, on every major high street and in every major airport.
For more information, visit: www.beltology.com
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