Budri and Patricia Urquiola apply natural stone to Valextra luxury handbags

“MarVles“. Foto: Budri“MarVles“. Photo: Budri

Stone varieties with strong colors were worked down to a wafer-thin thickness and used for the handles and clasps

The Italian company Budri is driven by the idea of developing new uses for special types of natural stone. Together with famous designers, Alessandra Malagoli Budri, and her husband Gian Marco, head of the world-renowned company, have always realized unexpected product ideas. You can find them by searching for the company name in our archive.

This year, as often before, in cooperation with the designer Patricia Urquiola, a new idea was born: “MarVles“ is a collection of handbags of the luxury company Valextra, in which, as the name suggests, marble and other types of stone are used.

They are variations of the classic Valextra collection “Iside“. And anyone familiar with Urquiola’s work for Budri will easily recognize the design of her “Agate“ stone rugs.

“MarVles“. Photo: Budri

It is worth a closer look from the point of view of stone processing.

What is sold here as stone very exclusive and expensive, in terms of quantity, is less than little. What the customer pays dearly and gladly for is consequently less the material as such but rather the design and the craftsmanship and know-how. This has long set Budri apart from the barrel ideology that is widespread in the natural stone industry.

“MarVles“. Photo: Budri“MarVles“. Photo: Budri

The craftsmanship here has several aspects:
* it consists in cutting the stone down to a wafer-thin thickness, and
* composing inlays from it, which are inserted into the metal handles of the handbags and into the clasps.
* Color also requires special know-how, because some strongly colored stones become pale as thin stones or even lose their consistency. Here, Budri’s laboratory has done a lot of work to determine the suitable varieties.
* Part of the feat also involved finding those stones that matched the Valextra colors for the leather.

“MarVles“. Photo: Budri

This way of using it also coincides with Alessandra Malagoli Budri’s plea to be respectful of natural stone: “We are dealing with a material that is millions of years old and that we must not waste.“

There are different variants of MarVles handbags, titled “The Fuse“, “The Bow“ and “The Edge“. They play through the shapes and colors of the stone elements. They are only available as limited editions, of course.

How, we must now clarify, did the collaboration of the three companies for MarVles come about in the first place?

„Le Tre Signore di Milano“ (The Three Women from Milan, f.l.t.r.): Sara Ferrero, Alessandra Malagoli Budri and Patrica Urquiola.

Alessandra Malagoli laughs and coins the word of “Le Tre Signore di Milano“, to be translated as The Three Women from Milan; Patricia Urquiola reports on her webpage about a “happy Milanese encounter“.

It went like this: Sara Ferrero, head of Valextra, visited Budri’s showroom in the Italian metropolis. There you can find, for example, the stone carpet “Agate“ by Patricia Urquiola, and so the ladies later met at Budri’s headquarters in Mirandola in Emilia Romagna.

And they quickly agreed that they could do something new together.



Patricia Urquiola

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(08.01.2021, 01.08.2021)