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Over in our Provisions shop, we make the most of good food by finding useful, beautiful products to go with it. Today we’re introducing our navy farmers market tote bag, designed in collaboration with MZ Wallace and available for presale now.
MZ Wallace & Food52 founders Monica, Amanda, Lucy, and Merrill cooking after a farmers market trip. (Photo by Morgan Ione Yeager for T Magazine)
Since we launched our Provisions shop last August, we’ve been lucky to collaborate with some incredibly talented makers, dreaming up products to make cooking and living better. Our latest collaboration with MZ Wallace -- and the perfect market tote bag that came out of it -- makes us especially happy, and here's why.
We’ve long admired MZ Wallace for their practical yet stylish approach to bags; they've managed to build a sought-after designer brand that is thoughtful about how to make our everyday lives more organized. "MZ Wallace has an unwavering committment to functional, beautiful design that has always stood out to us, and both Amanda and I use their bags as an everyday work essential," says Merrill.
How did our collaboration happen? Monica and Lucy, the founders of MZ Wallace, sparked the idea for their company at the Union Square Farmers Market (our local market), so working with them is especially fitting. And in a nod to the original inspiration of it all, we're donating $50 from the purchase of every bag to the Edible Schoolyard Project and Founding Edible Schoolyards.
The Food52 x MZ Wallace market tote brimming with produce.
Together, we spent months sketching and discussing the bag. We thought there must be a way to carry all our groceries in a sturdy yet good-looking bag, without crushing our heirloom tomatoes and bouquets of herbs -- a bag that was gorgeous in its own right, but useful and thoughtfully designed with food shopping in mind. And while it's ideal for vegetables and flowers, it's just as much at home next to our desk at work, or used as a stylish alternative to a diaper bag.
The inspiration board: a peek behind the scenes of designing and planning.
Once we landed on an idea that felt right, MZ Wallace got to work designing and crafting the bag. Then, in the true spirit of Food52, we put the choice for the final color to our community for a vote. You picked navy blue, and we’re so excited to share the story of it with you now.
The final product, down to every detail.
The navy nylon market tote has a washable bordeaux removable liner that you can pull out and spot clean, so you don’t need to worry about tossing in just-picked fruit and vegetables. Six exterior snap pockets and one exterior zip pocket keep your market haul organized (it can hold 70 pounds!), and the interior has six more pockets and a detachable change purse. Our favorite part is its versatility -- sure, it's a market bag, but all those pockets and zippers are ideal for staying organized, whether on your way to class, to the beach, to the gym, or just during every busy day. We carry lots of totes in our Provisions shop for everyday use, but we wanted to create a special, stand-out bag -- one that will last a lifetime and that makes a perfect gift.
Amanda and Monica shop at the market.
Since our community played such a big role in voting on and shaping the final product, we're giving you access first: The bag is available for exclusive pre-sale now and will ship in November.
Amanda has already toted it on a trip to San Francisco (and has done some serious West Coast produce shopping with it). And all four founders -- Amanda, Merrill, Monica, and Lucy -- shopped together to the Union Square market in New York City, using their totes to bring back piles of seasonal produce for this summery lunch. To see behind the scenes of their shopping trip with the bag in action, head to the T Magazine article here.
Tell us, what summer ingredients would you carry in your MZ Wallace tote?
Top photo and market photos by Morgan Ione Yeager; all other photos by James Ransom