aty Bell and John Maskell are both former students of Central Saint Martin’s, where she graduated in textile design, and he in graphic design and advertising in 2006. Not only did they share a love of salvaging fabrics, which led towards launching their zero-waste bag brand, Lost Property of London – but the two also fell in love and got married. Woop.
Their aims are perfectly aligned with the aspirations for Coal Drops Yard, where the focus is on quality, luxury handmade products, with sustainable eco credentials too, naturally. Having moved to a flat nearby five years ago, the couple couldn’t be more excited about having a shop of their own at the launch of a new retail destination.
“King’s Cross is fast-becoming the new creative hub of London, and Katy and I craved to be part of its journey somehow,” says John. “Because we now also live here, we’ve seen the area evolving first hand, and totally admire the vision and the sensitivity with which this industrial space is being reborn – transformation is very inspiring. So when we were contacted by Coal Drops Yard’s Craig White, we knew this was the location that would help put our brand on the map.
But perhaps the most compelling reason – and thing that gets us most excited – is the opportunity to be part of a collective. There’s this sense that CDY is not a retail destination, but a community of designers, makers, curators, innovators and collaborators.”
Lost Property of London make use of artisanal vegetable- tanned leather combined with surplus cottons, wools and linens, to produce beautifully minimalist bags, totally hand-made by their small, skilled team. And as former Central St Martins alumni now setting up shop right on the college’s doorstep, they are excited to demonstrate to today’s students, in the most practical of ways, where their degrees can lead.
“That can’t be overstated enough,” says John. “We have plans to involve and engage CSM students directly in our new space. As an individual brand, and also as a cog in the CDY collective, we have this awesome responsibility and opportunity to show students that they can live through their ideas and craft.”