Seventy Eight Percent

Ap Lei Chau, Hong Kong Ap Lei Chau, Hong Kong

The Story

Seventy Eight Percent was conceived in 2007. I waved goodbye to my extensive career as an outdoor sports bag designer and went about creating unique urban bags under my own brand. My idea was to create bags that excel in three areas: Functionality, Quality and Style. At that time I was recently married and had a one year old girl. I quit my day-job and started making my vision true.

Isn't that a great recipe for disaster? A year earlier, in a kayak accident in Hong Kong, a very good friend of mine and my creative soulmate, Elad Klein, died. Exploring the boundaries between art and design, Elad wrote a design manifesto that calls for designers to embed intentional flaws in their designs, thus creating products that are functionally imperfect. The idea was to force the users to find new ways for using daily objects and to adjust their habits in order to compensate for the product's flaw. Elad figured out that 78% is the right amount of perfection. More than that would not create the desired effect and less than that would result in a useless product. I named my brand Seventy Eight Percent to celebrate Elad's uncommon creative and playful spirit. I adopted the logo that Elad himself designed. Working from home, I designed and developed the Schults, Dimitri and Zazie bags that formed our debut collection - Back to Old School. It was hard. Good bags do not come easy. The development process was long. The search for the best natural materials the world has to offer and the most talented crafts-people close to home took time. Same for getting the products right. At some stage, working from home was not an option anymore. I moved to a studio located in Aberdeen, Hong Kong. It was a tiny space on the 31st floor, overlooking Aberdeen wholesale fish market and the vast South China Sea. What a view! It felt like sitting at the top of the world, on a plastic IKEA chair. Finally, in 2009, Seventy Eight Percent came out to the world. I was fortunate to launch it in Lane Crawford and Kapok, arguably the most unique shops in Hong Kong and Asia. I was not alone anymore - I had great crafts-people who managed to stand up to my high requirements. I also found Harold, a fresh product-design graduate who joined Seventy Eight Percent and helped me keeping up with the demand for more products. Harold is not only very talented and fun guy to work with, has is also an inherent 78% type of guy (One either have it or not. He does). Harold's creative force is evident in anything Seventy Eight Percent. Our products generated a lot of interest from leading design and style magazines and blogs, who picked Seventy Eight Percent out as one of Asia's noteworthy emerging designer brands. It was very humbling and encouraging. We also got lots of emails from people who used our bags and loved them. The best part of our job has always been being in touch with the men and women who actually use the products we make. You are the ones who give us the best ideas and give meaning to our hard work! Three years on, we are working hard, bringing our bags and accessories to more cities around the world and creating new and exciting products. We take it one step at a time, making sure our high quality standards are met and that we give each one of our customers and followers full attention. We moved to a new studio which we designed in the 78% spirit. View is still good. Good view is important. You probably got the picture by now. It's time I let you go. Thank you for being here and spending your time browsing through our products. I really appreciate it and hope you would like what you see. Please feel free to drop us a note if there is anything else you would like to know about us or if there is anything you would like to say. We'd love to hear from you! Cheers! Shai

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On the blog

  • Why 78% Perfect Is Just Right

    Seventy Eight Percent specializes in canvas and leather goods made with exceptional craftsmanship and attention to detail. Designer Shai Levy developed...
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  • A Labor of Love

    Boticca’s Style Hunters Chiara and Philippa are always on the lookout for designers who unique pieces with original materials. Leather is particularly...
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  • Piece I Love - September 24th

    Handpicked by Sam Most laptop bags seem almost deliberately ugly, but this attachécase from Seventy-Eight Percent has a strikingly modern, elegant...
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  • Mr. Foroughi’s Fresh New Piece

    We feel very lucky this week – it’s only Tuesday, but we’ve already heard from several happy customers! Meet the handsome Shahram Foroughi (he’s...
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  • Fresh Talent Alert – September 7th

    Another week, another influx of creative and unique designers. Seventy Eight Percent Seventy Eight Percent are inspired by a design philosophy developed...
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