Over twenty years ago, Emporium Custom Leathers LLC began its tenure at the New York Renaissance Fair under the name of The NERO Emporium. Since then it has been a regular fixture at the fair providing patrons with the highest quality, handmade leather armor, clothing and accessories. Over the years their product line has expanded to include various genres of costuming and mainstream items, but their dedication to traditional methods of production remains the same.
Emporium is owned and operated by Jessica Caruso-Reynolds. Jessica studied Fine and Performing arts with a specialization in Costume Construction and Design at Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ. After college she began a seven year long apprenticeship under the tutelage of master leather smith and founder of the NERO Emporium, Heidi Hooper. In 2006, Ms. Hooper retired, passing down the ownership of the business to her apprentice Jessica who re-named it to reflect this change and to open a new chapter in Emporium’s story. Ms. Reynolds is now a master leather smith herself with over fifteen years of experience in the craft. She and her apprentices follow a traditional approach to manufacturing, using no large machinery and crafting every piece by hand. This allows for a personalized touch that is lacking in many mass produced leather goods. Emporium Custom Leathers LLC exclusively uses leather and hardware produced in America, and selects only the best quality materials to make their products.
Jessica lives in Boston, MA and has a studio work space in Lynn, MA. In the summer and fall months, “Lady Jess” and her team can be seen making sword sheaths, corsets, period leather clothing and accessories on site during the faire day at their demonstration tables in front of their booth. The Emporium team is always up for a challenge and delight in putting their design skills to the test. They are always happy to take custom orders, welcoming any feedback or suggestions that customers may have so that they can be sure that the finished product is perfect.
Ms. Reynolds is beginning to develop a high end line of handbags that promises to excite. Be sure to check back frequently to see new bags as they are made and to find out what new adventures the Emporium crew have embarked on. You can find them online on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and in person at one of the conventions or fairs they attend. A list of these events can be found on the main page. Also stop into Emporium’s Etsy shop to keep pace with their one of a kind and newest designs. Links can be found on the “contact us” page.
Emporium Custom Leathers,LLC
Our Mission Statement
Our mission is to provide our customers with the highest quality leather products and personalized service while preserving traditional methods of hand craftsmanship and the art of leather craft.