Italian Handbag Trends

What defines a luxury handbag has changed in the past year — from exotic bags loaded with expensive hardware, charms, buckles and other ornaments to more timeless and elegant handbags that make a statement without making its owner look like a show-off.

 

On a recent trip to Italy, I was surprised to find the boutiques filled with more subdued designer handbags. While still remarkable in quality, the bags that lined the windows of Prada, Louis Vuitton, Bottega Veneta, Dolce & Gabbana and Gucci lacked extensive ornamentation or the daring patterns these designers are known for. Instead they offered solid leather handbags in a variety of colors, including red and yellow. Styles ranged from hobo bags to structured handbags in all sizes—oversized to clutch. On past trips to Italy, I’ve noticed that not many Italian women carry clutches but I saw a few stores carrying them on this last visit—mostly long, flat and oversized.

 

Weaved satchel, totes and bucket bags are hot this season—with black and brown leather purses and handbags being the choicest options. Women in Italy get a lot of use of their handbags; they take them from day to evening for all types of activities, so the bags they choose are of the highest quality.

 

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It's All Myne

You didn't like to share as a child. Maybe you wrote your name across your Barbie's face so that your little sister would know it was yours. Things have changed but you still get huffy when another woman walks into the club with the same handbag as you (and take yours by mistake!). Fortunately you have more stylish options for personalizing your belongings than a Magic Marker. How do sterling silver and Swarovski crystals sound? Boca Raton custom jewelry designer Constance Hart Tisdale founded It's Myne, a new concept in wearable art. Her designer charms hook onto keychains, necklaces, handbags and whatever else you want to claim as yours. Design yours today and mark your territory.

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What’s your Sex & the City Purse-onality?

Handbags from Sex & the City

The Sex & the City movie is what everyone is talking about. Every woman has a character she most identifies with—is it Carrie and her fashion dare devilism? Or Charlotte and her Upper East side sophistication? The fabulous SATC foursome has fondness for handbag designers like Chloe, Chanel, Prada and Robert Cavalli. In the Sex & the City movie, Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda are toting some of their favs, with some new additions like Nancy Gonzalez and a $2,750 Swarovski crystal-encrusted Eiffel Tower purse.

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How to become a fashion designer: Part II

Before you venture into the fashion biz, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with industry terms and fashion seasons.

Here are some fashion terms you may find useful in planning your fashion career:|

Haute Couture: This fashion term is French for "high sewing" or "high dressmaking" and refers to the creation of exclusive custom-fitted fashions. While the term is very loosely used, it’s actually a "protected name" in France, so it can only be officially used by designers that meet certain well-defined standards.

Lookbook: A lookbook is used by designers and retailers to show the range of a collection. You can use these to send to buyers, editors, journalists or on your website for the viewing public.

Off-the-rack: This refers to apparel made in standard sizes and available from in-stock merchandise. Also referred to as “ready-made” and “ready-to-wear”.

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How to become a fashion designer: Part I

Main11 Becoming a fashion designer


It seems like everyone is jumping on the designer bandwagon these days. And why not? The fashion industry is sexy — fashion shows, parties, celebrities, recognition, and even fame go along with a career in fashion.

Now herein lies the question: do you go to design school or go straight to starting a business? Not all fashion designers go the traditional route to design school, instead drawing on an entrepreneurial spirit, some “designers” turn their head for business into a thriving fashion enterprise.

Ralph Lauren is an example of a fashion designer who bypassed the sewing machine and headed straight for the marketplace. Which path you take depends on your personal motivation. If you love sewing and pattern making, the traditional route is going to bring the most satisfaction. If you love the fashion world but don’t have the patience for needle and thread, a career in the fast-paced and exciting fashion biz is still possible … read on.



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Shopping in Rome

When in Rome, prepare to spend!

If you’re an American heading to Rome for vacation and you plan to shop, prepare  to spend. You won’t find many deals in this ancient city. The major fashion houses aren’t based here (like they are in Milan and Paris), and Rome is more of a draw for tourists, so you can expect the prices to match those found in high-end stores in the States. And with the weak dollar, you’ll end up spending nearly double that amount. When I visited Rome in March, the exchange rate was $1.58 to the almighty euro. Ouch.

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Kate Hudson in Phillip Lim

Katehudsonlarger_2 Kate Hudson always looks great; her style is effortless and approachable. And fortunately accessible to the rest of us. Get the 3.1 Phillip Lim dress Kate Hudson wore on a recent trip to Miami.












Photo: FabSugar.com

3.1 Phillip Lim Paisley Dress worn by Kate Hudson

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Photo: StardardStyle.com

::A. Covington for The Divas Dreams

Charlize Theron Shines in Derek Lam

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Photo: InStyle

Charlize Theron shines in this sexy Derek Lam dress. And unlike when I was growing up, you can replicate the celebrity style with the click of a mouse. Shop for red carpet worth Derek Lam dresses on eLuxury.com, shopbop.com, and yoox.com.

Get ready for Spring with this Bow Halter Dress, and pair with these precious peep toe pumps (also by Derek Lam)Dl_11767389_h_pu_2Dklam2003520401_prod_medium .

 

Tie Dye ... can you dig it?

There are some things you just don't think will ever come back into style--like overalls and neon colored clothes. But then some fresh-faced designer decides to reinvent, and hopefully improve, a style from days gone by. Is tie dye one of these styles that will make its way back into the mainstream? Can a trend so obnoxious to begin with ever earn critical acclaim?

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Stella McCartney designs for LeSportsac

I bought my first LeSportsac six years ago and it’s is still my favorite lightweight tote (my DVF being my favorite heavyduty travel bag). It’s classic, practical and stylish. It gives hope that we can live without leather … okay, maybe not. It comes as no surprise that environmentally responsible designer Stella McCartney has designed a collection of bags for LeSportsac, which will debut on LeSportsac.com in February (right around the corner ladies!).

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