Our Story

Welcome to the Family

I dreamed of becoming a tradesman, of learning a trade, and having a leather goods store.

Photo of stamped immigration document
Post-WWII immigration papers of Joseph Erlich, 1949

Persistence and Survival

My grandfather, Joseph Erlich, was orphaned in 1925 at age eight. Poverty-stricken, he dreamed of pursuing the trade of leather craftsmanship. For several years, he tried to forget this calling to focus on his immediate survival. But dreams are not so readily cast aside. Convincing a townsman at age 12 to employ him, he began apprenticing in harsh conditions, terrified that when he broke the needle on his master’s sewing machine he would no longer be able to use the expensive equipment. A child, especially an orphan, could not afford to make mistakes. As Joseph wrote in his memoir, “In my day there were no easy times.”

10 years later as WWII raged on in Europe, most of Joseph's family was murdered, yet he survived. In a Displaced Persons Camp, he became aware of The Tailor Project – a small Canadian program sponsoring craftsmen to work in the country’s burgeoning fashion industry. He emigrated to Canada as a refugee. With only the clothes on his back, he was determined to start his leather goods business as a way to rebuild his life. And he did. A life built on quality, integrity, and personal relationships. This was his dream, and he never compromised.

Black and white photo of men in front of gas station sign
Joseph Erlich, and family in downtown Toronto, Canada

Heritage & History

After nearly 50 years in leather and a successful career selling to Canada’s top retailers, my grandfather closed his factory with the rise of mass outsourcing to China. But in 2016, I felt a calling. My life in finance did not align with the values I hold most deeply – the values that my grandfather had dreamed and sacrificed and persevered to embody. So, with substantially more privilege than my grandfather had, I embarked on my own journey in leather. After opening Daveed’s first popup shop and experiencing our first sold-out production run, I read my grandfather’s memoir and knew that I was exactly where I should be. Leather is in my genes.

My grandfather survived in the face of overwhelming struggle. He thrived as he mastered his trade and remembered his dream.

Photo of a man inspecting the stitching on a bag
Grandson Andrew Daveed Dale inspecting samples

Carrying Heritage Forward

Daveed sees an opportunity to bring honesty, integrity, and empowerment to the forefront of the leather goods industry. 90% of luxury bag production now occurs in China using the formula of low cost and high markup. There are very few examples, even in the last 10%, of a family business that has persisted through the generations. My mission is to honour my grandfather’s dream and to build Daveed’s own legacy of quality and mastery of the craft he loved so much. With customers all over the world in just a few short years, we’re well on our way.

My grandfather survived in the face of overwhelming struggle. He thrived as he mastered his trade and remembered his dream. It is with this spirit of quality and persistence that Daveed carries on. It’s ingrained in us, and in every stitch of every bag. Our Bag is Our Bond.

Welcome to the Family!