Man of Many Hats: Seth Carswell of Vessel Goods Leather Company

Seth Carswell of Vessel Goods Leather Company handcrafts heirloom-quality leather goods. He opened his business in 2015 to expand his passion for leather goods and produce quality products that will last for a lifetime. 

Carswell’s journey into leather goods began after college. With a bachelor’s in fine arts and industrial design, he got a job with a boat company in southeast Florida where he designed yachts. Through that experience, he had the opportunity to interact with upholsterers who would sew the entire interior of the yachts. Working with them exposed him to the leather industry and kick-started his career. 

“When I craft leather goods I want to get across that this item is crafted in such a way that it is going to last a long time.” 

The process of creating heirloom-quality leather goods stems from Carswell’s grandfather who played a huge role in his career. Before his passing, his grandfather left behind a few items that sparked the journey into the leathercraft. The most memorable item was a baseball glove that was used throughout his grandfather’s career as a professional baseball player. 

“The story culminates with this item now becoming a method for me to remember him by; something that he used and left his mark on and is now something I can hold on to.”

Carswell’s commitment to quality spawned out of frustration with product design and development. Throughout college, he would constantly work on projects that would be thrown away within the year. He wanted to create materials that had value and were durable enough to withstand years of use. 

“For every product, I use leather plus quality lining, so I’m using military-grade canvas which has a whole host of really tough properties.”

After opening his business, Carswell has had to wear many hats to maintain efficiency. Along with handcrafting the products, he also manages the finances and handles the everyday operations. Regarding the future of Vessel Goods, he is committed to keeping manufacturing in-house to retain the handmade quality of the goods. His vision for the store is to implement complete transparency. 

“When you come into the store to browse, you’re seeing the actual workers marking your bag. I want there to be a direct connection between the customers seeing who’s putting it all together.”

Listen to the 126th episode of WHOA GNV podcast to hear more about Seth Carswell’s journey into the leather goods industry and how he meets his own rigorous standards of quality, craftsmanship, and durability.

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