I came across ARCH completely by surprise back in 2019 when I was browsing through my Instagram feed. What caught my attention were incredibly well-built, colorful yet functional bags that were clearly inspired by hiking packs but had their own unique flair. As a bag nerd, of course, I immediately followed the account and for months was eyeballing the beautiful bags posted regularly by the brand. At some point, simply observing was no longer an option. So I reached out to say hi, share my adoration for the products and find out a bit more about the person behind the brand ARCH.
Today, I would like to lift the mystery curtain on Andrea Perici. A one-man army responsible for everything that makes ARCH a vibrant and unique brand in the carry scene.
I was fortunate enough to go through every step of ordering a custom bag from Andrea – a unique take on one of his most popular models called Grisetti. But before we dive into the bag itself I wanted to share a bit more on Andrea. Check out the questions that Andrea was kind enough to answer for Carryology.
- What did you do before making bags and how did you end up choosing the life of a bag maker?
I was born and raised in Milan and graduated in Interior Design. After a period in a design studio, I decided to leave the city and moved to the mountains. I worked in different ski lodges during the seasons, but always sewing (I started in April 2010). This has always been my passion and finally a couple of years ago orders started to be enough to live on, so I decided to go all in.
- What should one have in mind when approaching you to make a custom bag?
All my products are custom made, so I can seriously make anything. The customer just needs to have clear ideas on their needs and be able to share them with me.
- What is the warranty on your products?
My products are made to the best of my capabilities. For any type of issue on the product itself, I’m up to help the client to solve it.
- How far are you ready to customize the bag? Is there a limit or things you won’t accept in the order?
There is no limit in customizing a product as far as it makes sense to do it. I do have some of my own design rules to follow, just to express my type of work. But that said, again, no limits.
- How do you see the growth of ARCH? Is there a vision for your brand in five or 10 years?
In 10 years of trying to do it, actually 11 now, I finally feel that people understand the quality of the products that I make. In the last two years, I have noticed an exponential growth of ARCH. Hopefully, maintaining consistency in the work itself, I can still grow a lot. Doing what you like is not working, just having fun.
The process of creating the bag was quite simple and personal. There is no e-commerce platform or a bag-builder website. Just you and Andrea chatting through Instagram or WhatsApp about the purpose, use cases, materials, and features of the future bag. I immediately recognized Andrea as a kindred bag nerd and it was very friendly and productive to discuss ideas and inspirations.
As a bag reviewer, dozens of different packs go through my hands. I pick up the things I like and have a good understanding of things I don’t like. This, and personal preferences I developed over the years, were a foundation for my custom pack. It absolutely had to be:
- 35+ L capacity
- Expandable (and consequently a rolltop as the most versatile form factor known to man)
- All black (I like a stealthy aesthetic and it was hard not to give in to the fabrics/color extravaganza Andrea had at his disposal)
- With side access to laptop compartment
- With high visibility inner liner
- Feature multiple access points – the top of the roll naturally and for additional access, I picked the front panel
- With simple internal organization – as a big fan of pouches and packing cubes I definitely wanted a few pockets inside but having in mind that most of my stuff will be in pouches.
Let’s dive in and see what makes my custom ARCH Grisetti pack special.