LONDON — Indulging an obsession with customization, Anya Hindmarch is offering customers the chance to build their own bags with a collection set to launch exclusively at Barneys New York on Madison Avenue in May, WWD has learned.
Clients start with a bucket bag — a new style for fall that comes in large or small, leather, shearling or python — and can add a variety of handles and shoulder straps. Last come the charms, leather ruffs, key fobs, tassels — detachable and interchangeable — making for hundreds of combinations.
Hindmarch said she was thinking about Airfix model kits, which have been around since the Thirties. The British kits, which come with myriad components and paints and brushes, let hobbyists build ships, aircraft, figures and dioramas.
“The word ‘play’ is important for us — and I love to play,” said Hindmarch, adding that the collection, Build a Bag, is an extension of her bespoke offer.
“People want to express who they are, and no one wants the same bag — this way you can make it your own.” Of the bucket bag she said: “Its simplicity is its beauty, and as a consequence it falls really well and molds to your body. With this beautiful and rich simplicity, it is fun to mess it up.”
Hindmarch will lay out the concept today in London during an event at her Bond Street showroom, where an Airfix-inspired display will showcase the components that go into making the bags.
Build a Bag is the latest bespoke offer from the brand, which in the past offered a service called Be a Bag, where accessories could be adorned with personal and family photos.
Today, Anya Hindmarch allows customers to emboss their own handwritten messages and drawings in colored foil onto bags and accessories, and to customize existing designs. Those services are available online and at six stores worldwide, all of which have a craftsman on site.
Hindmarch said she is making a Build a Bag for herself that involves “a lovely crystal strap” and circle-shaped leather handles in a rainbow of colors. She said the material she is using for the collection is “the caviar of leather,” a tactile, natural-grained baby calfskin.
The bags, variations of which appeared in her latest runway show, will sit alongside the Anya Hindmarch seasonal collections starting with pre-fall 2017.
The smaller bucket bag is priced at $1,150, while the larger one is $1,250, while straps, handles and decorations are extra. The bags come in a rainbow of colors, and are lined in suede with a detachable pocket inside.
Handles are made from mink, shearling, exotic skins and leather, while shoulder straps come with embroidery, stickers and other adornments. There are bag charms and fobs — fuzzy hearts, fried eggs and happy faces — tassels and stickers.
The collection will be sold exclusively at Barneys on May 12 before rolling out globally on May 15, when the service will also be made available online. Customers will be able to buy already-built versions of the bag or design their own.
The collection will be sold at Lane Crawford and Isetan and at the Anya Hindmarch stores in Ginza, Aoyama, Bond and Sloane Streets in London, and in Los Angeles and New York.