Classic yet contemporary, Rachael Riedinger leather bags are keepers — bags that never go out of style.
The designer/owner: Born in Louisiana, Riedinger grew up in Alpharetta, GA, and graduated with a degree in art history from Georgia State University. After a few unfulfilling post-college jobs, she fell in love with the character of leather and the bag-making process. The self-taught designer and leather maker took her hobby full-time in 2014.
The company: Atlanta-based Neva Opet started in 2014. The company makes leather totes, backpacks shoulder bags and small leather accessories designed to grow in character with age and wear.
The company name: It comes from her great-grandmother Neva and the ancient Egyptian Opet Festival, a nod to Riedinger’s love of art history.
Best sellers: Marina Circle Bag ($150, shown above); Nico Backpack ($265); Marlene Tote ($275); and Carolee Clutch ($85).
Other favorites: Dorothea Fringe Bag ($250) and Ana Bucket Bag ($260).
Big break: In the spring of 2014, she received a large purchase order from Urban Outfitters. Also, being awarded an Emerging Fashion Designer grant in 2016 from the City of Atlanta’s Office of Cultural Affairs.
Claim to fame: Atlanta magazine’s holiday gift guide (2016). Also highlighted as one of five makers in Garden & Gun’s “Standout Southern Handbags” (2015).
What’s next: A slimmer tote, circle backpacks, a waist pouch for summer music festivals and laptop/Ipad sleeves.
Where to buy: www.nevaopet.com