Directive is a one-woman leatherworking business located in the former heartland of the leather industry, Milwaukee, WI. Taking her background in fine art in a different direction, owner and maker, Jess Goehner, taught herself bag design starting in 2012.

Being self taught, each design is rooted in the simplicity of the materials- allowing the shape and minimalist solid brass hardware to define her style. Each Directive product is made from raw materials, Jess’s two hands, and one basic sewing machine.

Directive products strive to be beloved, unique basics for a lifetime. Made of top grain, heavier leathers, the bags become softer and more unique to each owner with time. Lined bags (as noted) use heavy weight natural canvas for interior visibility.

Strap edges are hand painted and burnished with wax for longevity and a more polished look. All bags are made with solid brass hardware made in the USA. Hand made heavy duty zippers withstand repeat handling and safely enclose personal items.

Rai, the resident hound dog, oversees all naps and treat giving.

Exhibit is on display at the University Hospital in the display cases near the gift shop on the 2nd floor. Parking is available in the hospital ramp for a fee. 

Upcoming dates

Download schedule


  • Starting Wednesday, October 9th, 2019, repeats every day until Friday, November 01, 2019 — all day


University Hospital and Clinics, Display Cases near gift shop on 2nd floor

600 Highland Ave.
Madison, WI 53792