Working and laughing come together for Sarah, co-founder of Overt. It's evident the second you meet her. Being creative, working out, drinks with friends, eating good food, exploring and learning new things are part of a city girl's average day, and she needed the perfect bag to complement this 7am to 1am lifestyle.
What inspired you to start Overt?
My co-founder and I started to recognize how busy our lives were in the city. It’s not rare to leave your apartment at 7am and not get home until 1am that night. One day, we listed all the things we do in a day and what we carried around with us in our multiple bags – it was excessive and ridiculous! We spent time studying people on their commute in the subway and saw that it wasn’t just us. We knew then there had to be a better way, and that we wanted to create products that allowed the ‘City girl’ to transition from day to night with style and practicality.
We launched with the intention of connecting all of the kick-ass women in the city that we often meet, and have Overt be their common factor.
You designed the perfect backpack for girls on the go. Tell us about your design process.
I come from a career designing and producing bags in volume for a big fashion retailer in Australia, so we had the advantage of understanding technical construction and production. I had never done it in the U.S. though, so we didn’t have any resources.
We started with some market research, seeing what was in the market already and identifying our gap. Then we literally took a pile of “daily essentials,” exactly what we wanted this bag to carry, to get our base dimensions. Then considered the places you’d go with it, the office, the gym, yoga, a date, a party, traveling and how it needed to look. I started sketching the design and contemplating ways to make this bag truly unique and the ultimate tool for city living.
From there we started googling! Sourcing materials, hardwares, factories in New York, and literally hit the pavement. Countless days were spent running around the garment district from one weird little factory and shop to the other until we had everything we wanted, and a factory in Brooklyn to make our sample. It was essentially perfect from the beginning which is helpful! We actually both nearly cried when we first saw it, it was like our baby being born! We carried it home on the train so proudly.
We made a few changes and then proceeded with our first order. The entire process from ideation to our first sale was about 8 months, which is really quick considering our resources.
We love your laid-back city style. Can you share any style tips?
Thanks! New York City living really drives all of my decision factors when it comes to style. More often than not that mean - function and ease. I like to add something to my outfit that might not “match” as a stand out piece.
Anything you learned recently that blew your mind away?
That by 2020 majority of the US workforce (which is 155M people) will be freelancing.
The classic Negroni. I love Campari. It’s so easy and the citrus peel is so fresh.
Best advice I received?
Your work shouldn’t be a job, it should be what you do.
I love the unique design details on the Carina.
Fitness class I'm currently into?
Matt Cardio and Condition at East River Pilates
Three things always in my bag?
Dr Bronner’s peppermint lip balm, S'well water bottle, Lipstick (my daily go-tos are Kosas weightless lip color in Darkroom, or NARS audacious lipstick in Lana)
Currently listening to?
Emoji that best describes me?
Photography: Pierce Harrison