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Maker | R. Riveter


Maker | R. Riveter

Heath Stiltner

Photo May 16, 3 24 36 PM.jpg

The founders of R. Riveter have firsthand experienced the same difficulty that so many other military spouses of today deal with on a daily basis - finding flexible and mobile employment while attached to the military. Military families are relocated every 2.9 years, making it difficult for the spouse to pursue a single career or gain work experience. Many spouses of service members need flexibility in their employment opportunities as they are independently managing their households while their partners are deployed or on long training missions. It was these unique challenges that inspired Lisa Bradley and Cameron Cruse in 2011.

Dahlonega, GA—home of the Appalachian Trail, moonshine, and the 5th Ranger Training Battalion. A cozy small town, and unique assignment for most Soldiers and families. Like many small towns, Dahlonega posed yet another challenge for military spouse seeking employment. Lisa and Cameron met in Dahlonega while enjoying an assignment in the North Georgia mountains. Cameron’s Master of Architecture degree and Lisa’s MBA were slowly seeming more and more irrelevant, especially with fragmented resumes from the multiple military moves. Enter R. Riveter. The one of a kind handbag company was born out of a mix of passion, creativity and determination, designed to help chip away at the heart of military spouse employment woes. In a converted attic the two women laid the groundwork for the still rapidly expanding company with a 45 year old, 75 pound, Consew industrial sewing machine, some old tents, refined with a bit of real leather.

R. Riveter exists to provide mobile and flexible income to military spouses. Our company is run by military spouses; from the making of the smallest purse part to the models on our advertisements.  The larger R. Riveter story has been created chapter by chapter by each individual military spouse involved in the company.  Purse parts come from all over the country, making each R. Riveter bag a symbol of the American way of life and our connection as a military community.  It is our mission at R. Riveter to inspire pride and patriotism into the hearts of each customer.  We delight in the fact that we are completely homegrown and produce high quality, well-crafted items.   Our R. Riveter collection of handbags is the foundation of a company dedicated to serving the spouses of our service members. 

We are inspired by the challenges of our day and innovations that evolve as a result. Old military materials like duffle bags, wool blankets, and shelter halves are up-cycled, and combined with real, hand dyed leather to make each R. riveter bag-- producing a kind of character that is totally unique and full of history. Each bag is handmade by a military spouse; starting from the dying of the leather and canvas, to the assembly of the bag.  On the interior of the bag an edition tab displays the name & number of the individual bag, where it was made and when. 

At R. Riveter, we are inspired by the women who have come before us and truly exemplify the ‘We Can Do It’ attitude. Military spouses are a special group of women who take on the challenges of daily life and have a heart to serve in their community. As a special way to honor these women, all of our bags are named after famous military spouses. Made by hand to a strict quality standard, R. Riveter hand bags are a statement of pride and support for all military spouses and families.

To learn more about R. Riveter, their team, and their mission check out their website at