Small Business Spotlight on Eyewitness News 3



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This week, Small Business Spotlight heads to Luken & Co., where fine Italian handbags are made, right here in Connecticut.

Francesco Lauri took decades of experience in the fashion industry and went to work in Norwalk.

"It felt always challenging for the consumer to have the luxury, to have something beautiful. It's always extremely expensive, right? So, the idea of creating my own brand, was really to create something beautiful but accessible,” Lauri explained.

He created Luken & Co.; a line of durable, trendy bags set at a reasonable price point.

"For instance, what you see right here, this is part of my Italian capsule. All upcycled leather, everything made in Italy with very reasonable price point,” he said.

Lauri, from Italy, moved to Connecticut 20 years ago for love. Which is how his company's name also came to be.

“When you start a company, or when you start a brand, the name is crucial right? Obviously, the goal was maybe to go with an Italian name, but after several trials and tries with what I had in mind, it was very hard to pronounce. So, I took my son’s name, which his name is Luca, and my wife’s name, which her name is Kendel, and I made it into Luken, and then, and ‘Co,’ I am the ‘Co.’ And they are the Luken. And that's really what inspired me,” he explained.

He added that his wife definitely gets to give input, but he is the creative designer of the products, like one of the most popular sellers.

"This is the ferenza bag, it's in leather with a leather tassel. This is very popular; it's one of our best sellers,” he described.

He said the reason it's so popular is it comes in several colors and you get a lot of use out of it.

Lauri just launched his brand a year ago, and is in 100 stores across the United States.

He just started doing trunk shows and pop-up stores, and now he's looking to expand his product line.

"We are working with a local designer here in CT and she's based in Madison. We are already working on a jewelry capsule made in United States by hand with natural stones at a very, very accessible price point.” he said.

He added that everything he designs is classic and chic.

“Buy something beautiful, buy something that you love and buy something that makes you feel really good and special, right, you look good, you feel good,” he said.

Copyright 2021 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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