Object Lesson: You Are Here

New Yorkers are a loyal bunch, especially when it comes to their home city. And some even like to broadcast that love in the form of an accessory. Thankfully, now said New Yorkers can move beyond the standard Yankees cap to a different kind of socially—and locally—conscious product: the Maptote.
Conceived by a Park Slope-based stylist and her cartographer boyfriend, Rachel Rheingold and Michael Berick put their talents together to create the ecologically sound, directional canvas carryall following a trip to Berlin. The pair had been shopping in the fashionable Mitte district when they first saw a similar-styled sack hanging from the shoulders of a number of hip locals. But after spotting the unexpected totes again at an offbeat souvenir shop, they decided to buy the whole lot of them and disperse them among their friends back home as gifts.
Once the rave reviews came pouring in, the would-be designers tried their hand at making their own adaptation, which yielded the original Brooklyn Maptote. After numerous requests from envious friends back on the Island, a Manhattan version soon followed, then Los Angeles, Chicago, and Boston. The list is still growing, and European locales are soon on the way. At only $12 apiece, one could love them for the pricetag alone, but we’re more inclined to love them for being green and stylish at the same time.
The Maptote, $12, is available at www.maptote.com and at Matter, 227 5th Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-230-1150.
The Map Tote makes its way home.

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