Artist Feature

Will Ficner, Founder of Wilboro

Sewing has been in Will's background since he was 12 or 13.  But his love of handcrafting leather goods took shape later in life when he was interested in cycling.  The old military messenger bags-which he found ideal for cycling- sparked his attention and he wanted to recreate this look. He found heavy duty industrial sewing machines stuffed in his parent’s basement between wood and metal working tools. There were also old bolts of Cordura, boxes of leather scraps, rolls of webbing and jars full of all sorts of new and vintage buckles.

Will's family has long history of making things by hand; his great grandfather was a cobbler, his grandfather made bags, shoes and wove baskets, and his father had made backpacks, travel bags and climbing harnesses. The mantra in Will's house was you could make anything yourself and luckily his father helped him along for the first number of projects while he learned to tame those wild industrial machines.

In 2010 he decided he needed to give his sewing and leather craft projects a name. That’s when the Wilboro name came to be, a fusion of his name and the borough in Ottawa; Westboro. Since then he has been steadily building a fully operational leather and sewing workshop and ever honing his skills.  

Until 2013 Wilboro was purely based around making products for family, friends, the occasional commission and for himself.  That’s changing now though.  

We're happy to support Will by partnering with him in making the Big Sixer made by Will for Ernest Cider (Coming Soon in April).