Creative Louisville: Clay Simpson and Tyler Jury – Clayton & Crume

Meet Clay and Tyler.

Clayton & Crume - Creative Louisville

Remember Katie Jury (if not, go check out this feature)? Well meet her equally creative husband Tyler and his partner in leather goods Clay Simpson. Together Tyler and Clay are the guys behind Louisville-based leather good company Clayton & Crume. The brand is known for their handmade leather and leather-backed canvas belts but they’ve expanded into journals, key fobs and other accessories – all handmade.

I first came across this talented duo and their line from Katie but have been following along with the growth of their company and travel adventures through their A+ Instagram account. So when I heard about their new Louisville workshop on Bardstown Road, I knew it was time to share their story on Creative Louisville.

Not only are they opening the doors on their new Louisville space but they’re also launching a new line of ladies leather clutches to accompany their wide selection of men’s belts and assorted leather goods. Get to know the two guys (the first guys to be featured on Creative Louisville!) behind this locally-based brand building a national presence.

GENERAL 

* NameClay Simpson & Tyler Jury

Company: Clayton & Crume

* Title: Founders, Owners, Makers. 

*  How did you get started in your fieldClay’s college sewing class, paired with a desire to have a great tailgating belt, lead to a primitive version of the belts we sell today. Simply put, we wanted something that wasn’t on the market, so we made it. The first iteration of belts garnered immediate attention from our friends on campus, and it wasn’t long before we were making dozens more for friends and fraternity brothers. We had a little dorm room workshop going, and that’s where the passion was born. We’ve since expanded our offering to a handful of quality leather goods, all inspired by needs that have arisen in our own lives.

*  What inspires you? We have a bit of an identity crisis, and this shows in our products. We’ve always loved the timeless nature of a custom canvas belt. As men, it’s one of the few ways we have to make a statement. But there’s also something to said for the rugged nature of a solid leather product. Good products tell stories, and we’re inspired by the stories our products will tell after decades of use by those we’ve created them for.

*  What three words best describe your work: It’s hard to sum yourself up in a small handful of words. But we strive to create products that are natural, durable, and elegant.

*  One thing about you that might surprise people:
Tyler –  I am a dental student by day, and leather crafter by night.
Clay – I sleep with my belt on.

LOUISVILLE 

Why Louisville? So many people end up leaving Louisville, what helped keep you in the Commonwealth? Louisville has such a creative, inspiring community. We were both born and raised in Kentucky and love our roots.  The abundance of bourbon’s a plus.

Favorite Louisville Neighborhood: The Highlands 

 Favorite Spot for a DrinkWhen we aren’t pouring out a Coors or mixing up margs in the shop, you can find us at Great Flood or Sergio’s World Beers.

Favorite Lunch Spot: El Taco Luchador

Favorite Dinner Spot: El Taco LuchadorFront porch. Beers and green sauce all around.

* You’ve got to tryBut seriously those fish tacos. ^^^

* Favorite Festival: Kentucky Derby Festival. Who doesn’t like a month-long party?

Favorite Pizza Spot: We’ve been “college students” in Spinelli’s eyes for the past 9 years. That discount, tho…

If someone is visiting from out of town and only has time to go to three places, where do you send them?

1. Grab a Maple Bacon Donut at Nord’s and take it to Cherokee Park for breakfast.

2. Taco Lucha………kidding.  Grab lunch at Ghyslain on Market & walk the shops on Market Street/Nulu.  It has been awesome to watch that area grow.

3. Then come on by the new Clayton & Crume workshop, of course!

*  Where in Louisville can people find Clayton & Crume? We just moved into a new workshop in The Highlands. Our address is now 1901 Bardstown Rd.  It is not a retail store – just our working office space, but visitors are welcome anytime! We also retail in a healthy handful of excellent local boutiques – more details on the website!

JUST CLAYTON & CRUME 

How did you all get started in the leather goods business?   A couple Coors Lights in a Gatlinburg hot tub in late 2012 led to a conversation that sparked the beginning of C&C. We both have always had an entrepreneurial spirit– it just took the right idea to get us rolling.

What’s it like working together?  Fun. Each and every day. Our personalities lend themselves to great cooperation and creativity, and we believe in enjoying the workday. TED Talks, new tunes, and rap battles keep us busy while we sew. Add us on RapChat.

What was the first thing you made? One slightly terrible WKU dog leash “belt”. We had no where to go but up.

* Favorite piece in your collection? The leather journals that accompany us on all our adventures grow prettier with every outing. Countless to-do lists, product ideas, and business inspirations have found their way into those trusty little books. It’s the only travel companion we’d never leave behind.

What has been the biggest pinch me moment in your career so far? Someone spotted wearing C&C? Partnership opportunity?  Seeing Nick Lachey on VH1, standing next to the founder of Jefferson’s Bourbon (who was wearing our belt) had us wishing that 98 Degrees, the Backstreet Boys & NSYNC were still a thing.

Dream partnership/collaboration? We love iconic, time-tested goods. Maybe one day you’ll see C&C/Pendleton, or customizable C&C Bean Boots. We’ve got a long way to go.

I love following your travels on Instagram, what’s your favorite destination? Whichever one we’re planning next. Always looking forward.

What’s next for C&C? Leather clutches. We’ve been neglecting the ladies. We’ve been prototyping in preparation for a limited run of duffels and totes, hopefully hitting the market this Spring. Also, belt workshops. We want to share our work space and our craft with as many people as we’re able.
{Note: Stay tuned for an outfit post featuring one of these fabulous clutches next week!} 

Photos by Aubrey Renee Photography

October 6, 2015

1 Comment

  1. Reply

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent

    October 5, 2015

    Three cheers for more men’s goods coming to Louisville! It’s about time.

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent
    http://thekentuckygent.com

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