Freeload Leather Accessories

The cream of Devon’s Individually handcrafted leather goods

Debbie MacPherson set up Freeload Accessories in 2006. She handcrafts leather accessories including technology cases, wash bags and handbags in her South Devon based studio.

This post is a short interview to introduce you to her range of fantastic products.

How did you get started doing what you do?

My career as an accessories maker began as an 18 year old in 1995 when I completed a two year training scheme with a small Cornish shoemakers.

This is where my passion for leather accessories began, it also instilled in me a strong desire to explore the fashion side of the industry and to develop myself further.

After moving to London and completing a BA Honours degree in footwear and accessories design at the renowned Cordwainers College I decided to work for myself as a designer/maker and Freeload Accessories was born in 2006.

How do you differentiate yourself in a crowded market? What is special about your products?

Each product of ours is individually handcrafted, great attention to detail is paid to each piece. As all our accessories are made by us we are often able to add personal touches at the customers request.

Freeload Leather Overnight Bag
Freeload Leather Overnight Bag – £235

All our leathers are sourced directly from an Italian tannery, it is important to us to know the source of our leathers.

Whereabouts does your manufacturing take place?

All manufacturing takes place in our small workshop based in Paignton, South Devon.

How tricky has it been to put together a high quality product?

The most difficult part of the development process is sourcing fittings that are both strong and attractive. We work hard to produce accessories that are hard wearing and of a high quality, therefore we would not want a sub-standard fitting to let us down. We ensure that all fittings used are rigorously tested to avoid this issue.

Rustic Brown Leather Merritt Messenger Bag
Rustic Brown Leather Merritt Messenger Bag – £139

What do you enjoy most about your work?

I love the satisfaction of designing a brand new product. The making process is always great fun for me, there is nothing more satisfying than having a plain hide of leather at the start of the day and ending up with a fantastic new handbag by the end of the day!

Leather Maxi Messenger Bag
Leather Maxi Messenger Bag – £199

Do you have any new products/ranges planned for the next year or so?

I’m currently planning a hybrid of a satchel and backpack which will be ideal for business people on the move, so watch this space!

From what or who do you take inspiration?

I take my inspiration in many forms ranging from the nature around me, a vintage find or what’s currently on trend within the fashion world. I particularly enjoy mixing traditional techniques with a modern twist; the use of the highest quality Italian leather with feature stitching and chunky brass or nickel saddlery fittings has become my trademark look.

Freeload Leather iPad Air Case
Freeload Leather iPad Air Case – £65

Which product in your range do you personally use the most and why?

I use the Leather iPad case and I have an amazingly large collection of leather bags!

Yellow Leather iPad Mini Case
Yellow Leather iPad Mini Case – £45

I try to use each design that is made as it is important to see how it wears and if any changes need to be made.

If you like what you see then you can take a peak at the full range of Freeload accessories here.

Joel Chudleigh

Founder of MADE TO LAST. Very proud to be working with my Co-Founder Kinjal and our diverse range of amazing suppliers to create a retail site with a purpose. When not working I enjoy relaxing with family & friends as well as adventure sports - particularly bouldering, snowboarding & surfing as well as 5-a-side footie. Really interested in the environment and from this have been forced to learn more and get interested in politics and a bit of economics. Proud member of the Green Party.

What people are saying about this...

  1. Hi,

    I’m Sam and my company Slim Bifold has just launched its second wallet ‘Slim II’ for the first time on a crowdfunding platform – Kickstarter.

    We would love to gain some recognition in the ‘niche market’ for our brand new campaign from like-minded and equally excited members of the Made to Last online community.

    If you have some air time for us, we would like to approach this opportunity slightly different.

    Rather than submitting a generic template, we would love to offer your followers the chance to enter a competition where 10 of our luxury Italian slim leather wallets are up for grabs using the Gleam tool.

    Let me know your thoughts and if this is something that you’re interested in, as we can then send across the details for the competition.

    Kind Regards.

    Samuel Andrews

    1. Hi Sam

      Please feel free to get in touch about selling your wallets on Made to Last once your business has formally launched.

      We will not be able to promote products that are not currently for sale on Made to Last I am afraid.



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