Shibuya Tote Bag (Navy)


The Shibuya tote bag's simple construction is based on traditional Japanese origami bags.

The Details:

6L tote bags. Made with 9oz paraffin waxed canvas. Vegetable tanned leather straps. Adjustable shoulder straps – can be worn on the shoulder or across the body. Large front pocket with snap fastener. Contrast red canvas pocket with snap fastener on the inside. 'Artists always sign their work' label on the inside, stamped with the name of the craftsman who made the bag. The tote bag will fit a 13.5" laptop inside. 

Designed in Paris. Made in Japan.

Tote Dimensions: 

Height: 360mm x Width: 280mm x Depth: 120mm

Original RRP: £150

The Canvas

The waxed 9oz army ‘duck canvas’ is a strong, durable, multi-purpose fabric with a very tight piled-yarn weave construction making it very strong and resistant to tearing. It is woven and finished in Japan. The refined wax finish provides an additional layer of protection from rain, moisture and time. Waxed canvas has a long lifespan behaving much like leather in the way it patinas and softens with age. Our waxed canvas requires only minimal care to maintain its appearance and can go years without having to be washed. The wax formula is non-toxic and non-hazardous. This advanced formulation performs great in both hot and cold temperatures.

The Leather

All the Cowhide leather used on our bags is produced and Vegetable tanned in Japan. Vegetable tanned leather refers to the method of treating the cowhide into leather. Vegetable tanning is a time-consuming process requiring highly skilled craftsmen, which involves soaking the hides in large baths of concentrated tannins over a course of several months. It's called “vegetable” because of the natural materials used in the tanning process like tannin. Tannin is found in vegetable matter like tree bark. Since vegetable tanning is a natural process, it's has a low ecological impact. Vegetable tanning does not involve harmful chemicals that are required for chrome tanning, which has become today’s industry standard.

The Buckle

The bags have straps that are fastened with their signature leather buckles. They are made from the same leather as the straps themselves, and reduce the need for metal accessories. These buckles may seem stiff and difficult to fasten in the beginning, but will soften up with use and time. The leather itself will evolve in colour through use.


Kamé bags have been hand crafted in the small town of Iga, near Nara, the old capital of Japan from the 8th century. The small workshop was founded by Shozo Okunaka in 1963 to make canvas bags for Japanese workmen. The factory, that now counts 23 craftsmen and women, is still owned and run by his son Toshinao Okunaka.

Each bag is made by hand by their experienced craftspeople, most of who have been making bags for over 20 years. Many of the machines and methods used in the beginning are still in use.

The Kamé Way

Kamé (カメ) is Japanese for Turtle. In Japan, the turtle is a symbol of longevity, persistence, determination, endurance and long life. The Japanese believe that the turtle symbolises our peaceful walk on this earth. Whether it’s peace of mind or a peaceful relationship with our environment.

Turtles are also known for taking it slow. Real slow. They are one of the oldest creatures on earth, and are considered to be one of the wisest. They have acquired their wisdom one day at a time and are the living embodiment of slow. The Japanese believe that when a turtle appears to you in a dream, then it's time for you to slow down.

Kamé apply this philosophy to everything that they do.

We believe in walking when everybody else is running. We believe in putting acquired wisdom to good use, which means investing in the people who make our products.

We believe in making things in a low impact way. This not only effects the choices we make on our raw materials but also the design of the bags themselves. All of our fabrics, leather and trims that we use are made in Japan.

We keep our products simple by using fewer components and keeping proportions in balance. That means that we limit the sources of raw materials. The more simple a design, the more functional it will be, and the longer it should last.

We believe in balance of design and balance in life. The people who make our products enjoy a quality work-life balance. They will have better lives and make better products. Simple maths.

We believe in sustainability. This means we invest in quality and in people. We don’t own the factory that makes our products, instead we choose to work with them because they share our values. When most of the craftsmen have worked in a factory for more than 20 years, then it’s a good sign that they like their job.

We believe in the turtle and it’s slowness. In an era dominated by a passive consumption of cheap and synthetic products, we believe there is an alternative. We believe in sharing this know-how with people who appreciate it. Quality and pride come at a price, that is priceless. We want to help you carry your home on your back (figuratively speaking) and, like a turtle, to feel at ease wherever you are.

If you like ideas, it will inspire you.