Accessories designer Gita Costa has a bit of an identity problem.
During personal appearances at stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue, she's often greeted by calls of "Eliza's here" — so much so that Costa has begun to answer to that name.
Blame the confusion on the success of Costa's handbag collection, ElizaGray. The name is a combination of a family friend's name, Elizabeth, and Costa's son's name, Grayson.
Costa, who has no formal fashion training, began ElizaGray on a lark four years ago with a collection of ponytail holders that consisted of a elastic attached to a crystal-encrusted metal fob, which has become Costa's signature.
"Being a young mom, I wear my hair back a lot, and I always wanted something beautiful for my hair," Costa said.
She introduced the jeweled ponytail holders at a friend's store in Nantucket and was overwhelmed by the positive response. From there, Costa branched out into handbags, with her hand-designed ornaments as the focus.
ElizaGray handbags, which retail between $300 and $2,000, are mostly wicker, with a smattering of satin, leather, alligator and lizard skins. The color palette is lively: hot pink, gold, silver and turquoise, as well as some white, beige and black. There are about 17 proprietary Swarovski crystal-encrusted ornaments in the shape of shells, flowers, leopards, sea horses and starfish. Costa plans to introduce two new ornaments every season.
Costa said her handbags sold so well at Saks Fifth Avenue in Palm Beach, Fla., in May 2005, that by June the collection was rated the number-one vendor for the entire year.
"We think it's really suited for the Florida market," said Elizabeth Kanfer, fashion director of accessories at Saks. "It's been very strong for us. They're quirky, but very Palm Beach."
ElizaGray has expanded to four more Saks stores in Florida, in North Palm, Naples, Sarasota and Fort Meyers. The line, which has grown to include belts and compact mirrors, also is available in more than 60 other stores, including Neiman Marcus in Palm Beach, Takashimaya in New York, Cabana in Santa Monica, Calif., and Eye of the Needle on Nantucket in Massachusetts.Costa's line for spring features 19 new shapes, a few new colors like lilac and deep purple, and two new ornaments, a fleur de lis and an octopus.
Despite the variety of shapes and designs, Costa maintains one constant: All her clutches have a shoulder strap. "When I go out, I want to have my drink and my 'pigs in a blanket,'" she said, "so I make my clutches so you can just slip the strap over your shoulder and not have to hold onto it all night."
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye