That fashion is a trade is often downplayed. Most designers of clothing and accessories choose to emphasize the artistry of their work, the conception, creation and display of their wares. That’s understandable and interesting, but so much of the industry involves measuring and cutting, skilled workers, factory floors, machinery and supply chains—not so sexy but absolutely essential.
Art and trade are on full display at the 1,000-square-foot studio of design darlings Marcela Velez and Melissa Losada of M2Malletier. The duo launched their well-received and coveted collection of clearly sexy handbags in Barcelona, where they made a home for themselves in a pre-World War I cement factory that was renovated by Spanish starchitect Ricardo Bofill. The building, called La Fábrica, resembles a brutalist Gothic castle—in other words, it’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen.