These belts reflect their designers, and these designers reflect the sensibility of true New Englanders – durable, quirky, utilitarian and beautiful.
Whether it’s innovation inspired by necessity, or a clever form of reusing and recycling, these belts of New England do more than fashionably cinch the waist on our silky sundress or hold up our favorite pair of jeans.
If you love those unique patterns found while thrifting for neckties, and detest the prescribed aesthetic of chain pet stores, then Logan Szidik is your man. The concept for his specific brand of waist straps and dog collars began in 2011, when he sewed one of his favorite neckties onto a leather belt from the summer of his first year in college. “I set out the next day searching thrift stores around Cape Cod to find more ties that I felt embodied the handcrafted feel and distinctive style of New England…Since then, the line has grown to include matching dog collars and leashes. We source American, equestrian-grade leather and the finest woven silk from a 17th-century mill. Each product is hand-sewn right here in Burlington, VT.”
Human belts $75-$89
Doggie collars & leashes $59-$79
During the company’s early days (World War Two-era United States), the owners were posed with a problem – limitations on domestic metal production. Rilleau Leather’s signature buckleless knotted belts were born of this challenge, and now function as historical signposts, while still remaining fashionably transgressive and fun. Who needs buckles anyway?
Knotted Belt & Tapered Belt $150
These are the designers showing up for the classic New England prepster in all of us, “Good Taste is timeless. Cashmere, crisp white blouses, gold earrings, navy blue blazers and pearls. They will go on forever.” It’s easy to imagine their thin, red, patent leather belts going well with any seersucker dress, or their motif belts (printed alligators, roosters or pirate skulls) fitting perfectly across your best pair of khakis. Either way, when it comes to the tasteful, preppy accessories at the waist, Eliza B has you covered.
Ape & Bird
Providence Rhode Island
Ape & Bird founders April Gramolini (Ape) and Rich Giasson (Bird) handcraft fanny packs, 5-panel hats, wallets and, of course, belts. The buckles of these vegan pieces are made from recycled, smoothed out skateboard chunks. The vivid designs of the reclaimed wood pieces complement the minimal, grey cotton band portion of the belt. Check their Etsy page where they proudly brandish the tag #nosweatshopshit