A Different Kind of Collaboration with The James Brand

A lot of times when you do a collaboration with someone, it’s all about the product. You get to bring something interesting to the other’s audience and both brands get a boost as a result. The whole discussion is around what to design and how to design it, so that it’s relevant and useful for everyone. 



It was almost the opposite when we connected with The James Brand. The team there reached out to us merely to get advice about more sustainable materials. How did we source our EcoAcetate? What were the quality considerations? And, did we have an insight into how that might work as a better type of finishing for their everyday carry tools? 



If you’re unfamiliar with The James Brand, there’s no one actually there called James. They’re  a group of designers, surfers and adventure lovers who create stunning tools for the outdoors. ‘James’ is a character they made up to embody the type of person they envision using their minimalist gear. Someone who moves seamlessly from the city to the country and back, always looking for an adventure or a reason to travel, ready for whatever the day might throw at them. 



Their team shares a lot of the same values and motivations as OTIS, so we obviously hit it off. We were more than happy to share some insider information on ways to integrate more sustainable materials. There was plenty of back and forth, we introduced them to our supplier, and generally chatted about what makes for better design. It was a lot of fun and really rewarding sharing the good stuff. 

Even better, when we saw the Eco Acetate Collection The James Brand made as a result, we fell in love. Two premium, minimalist tools plenty of our crew would use themselves. There’s the Elko, which is a sleek scissors and knife combo. There’s also the Ellis, which is a perfect size knife for your keyring. Both have a deep-carry wire connector that doubles as a bottle opener, screwdriver and pry tool. Wildly handy. 



Considering how great the collection is, we decided to offer some very, very limited numbers for our own community on The OTIS online store. There are just 10 of each style available and then they’re gone. There are no OTIS logos, no branding from our end at all. Those who know will still see the influence of our Eco-Acetate as part of the finish though. A tiny nod to a cooperation that was simply about doing something a better way. 


There’s every chance we’ll work together again on a ‘proper’ collaboration, but this is something especially pure we wanted to share. A neat beginning to a partnership we hope will last a long time.

To check out The James Brand head here.

Or, to view the tools on our online store, head here.