CCAD grad Jovanna Robinson creates Tonē Bekka brand


Jovanna Robinson works in her studio at 400 West Rich, where she makes and sells her own travel bags, totes and men's and women's handbags under her brand Tonē Bekka, Wednesday, May 19, 2021.

For designer Jovanna Robinson, the creative process begins at the leather store.  

“That’s when it speaks to me,” said Robinson, who owns Tonē Bekka, a line of handmade leather travel bags and accessories. “I’ll just see something and say, ‘That would make a great bag, that would make a great clutch or that’s a great backpack.’ The leather store is my candy store.”  

And a small studio at 400 W. Rich St. in Franklinton is where the material comes alive. Robinson creates colorful and durable tote bags, duffels, laptop bags, wallets and more. She has clutches and cosmetic bags that are enhanced with African Ankara prints — sourced from the continent — and others that are adorned with calf hair.

The bags range in price from $27 to over $500.

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“I want my bag to be that eye-catcher, that puts your outfit over the top,” said Robinson, a 38-year-old graduate of Columbus College of Art & Design, who lives on the Northeast Side.  

Jovanna Robinson makes travel bags, wallets, handbags, laptop bags and other leather accessories at her Tonē Bekka studio in Franklinton.

She sells her items online, at markets and by personal appointment. As her brand becomes more popular, Robinson has dreams of opening a storefront, hiring her first employee and inspiring others through teaching.  

She is already turning heads outside Columbus. Her bags and accessories are carried by The Brown Sugar Collab, a boutique in Charlotte, North Carolina. The shop’s owner, DeAnna Allen, said she was impressed by the quality.  


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