Category Archives: New Member

The Accessories Council Showcase Goes To The 2016 PROJECT Women’s Show

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The Accessories Council was proud to host a booth at the August PROJECT Women’s show in Las Vegas.  The Council began a partnership with the MAGIC trade show in 2012 and has continued to show in Las Vegas each season since.  The Council commits to a booth space and divides it into smaller spaces, offering their members a chance to try out the show before committing to a full booth.  The Council coordinates the details with the show, helps prepare the attendees, promotes the collective group actively before and during the show.  After a few seasons with the AC, the brand, should they want to continue a particular show, must go out on their own.

Council President, Karen Giberson, feels this is an important membership benefit and over the years has allowed hundreds of their companies to try new shows.  The Council attends approximately 12 shows a year, from jewelry focused shows to the PGA Show in Orlando to Premiere Classe in Paris.  They take designers to India for a leather fair and are committed to continuing to find opportunities to help their members sell more product.

A side benefit for participants is the support network that develop in the booth.  “We have seen collaborations amongst our members continue far beyond the show,” explained Giberson. “From PR collaborations, to mentoring and group trunk shows, our members genuinely enjoy working together and we love to watch it in action!” For the Council, the shows allow them to stay in touch with members, assist on the ground and meet new companies.

For a list of upcoming shows and events, visit www.accessoriescouncil.org or email Karen@accessoriescouncil.org for details.

A few participants from the August show include:

  • Piccolo New York, an upcoming cashmere accessories brand that’s getting a lot of positive response from buyers – Calyso St. Barth, Walin & Wolff, Frances Kahn & Julian Gold to name a few. As a New York based collection, we wanted to expand our exposure further to the West Coast and by showcasing with Accessories Council @ Project Womens, we have been able to get in front of a lot of West Coast based and international buyers.  Accessories Council has been a great platform and has been tremendous in helping us increase visibility, and in networking with others in the fashion accessories industry. We believe in helping women and children’s initiatives, and are currently very actively involved in supporting 2 amazing organizations with that goal – Hearts of Gold, and Zimele USA.  We hope to continue increasing our support for these charities, through the success of our business.

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  • Elle & Jae Gypset newly launched in Fall 2016 is actively looking to grow our boutique business and the showcase at PROJECT is a great way to introduce the brand to the buying community. We picked up boutiques both on the east and west coast, but one of our main objectives was to meet with accounts that may not travel to New York for market.  Elle & Jae Gypset is a line of ethically produced handbags for bon vivants who live and play around the world…whether she’s off to the next music festival in Europe or surfing the beaches of Montauk, she likes to look and feel good about what she’s wearing. P1040814
  • Angel By L. Martino is a new handbag line launched by L+ Leung Design Group. The bags are all leather and made in India. This new line has a beautiful artisan feel that is designed for a relaxed lifestyle with a modern edge. The Accessories Council Showcase at PROJECT Women’s is incredibly valuable to a new brand such as ours. Being able to test out a show at a reasonable rate while gaining exposure for our newly launched handbag line is an incredible opportunity for us.

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  • Ollie Quinn’s fashion introduction has been momentous.  Our award-winning O-shape silhouette handbags are inspired by vintage hatboxes and uniquely celebrate heroines from yesteryear in Modern Americana.  Following a series of major press and honors, the opportunity to join the Accessories Council for the showcase at PROJECT was a timely introduction to wholesale business. Joining the AC Showcase enabled the introduction of our brand where we sit at retail while allowing us to nurture professional relationships across the globe.  Our trade-show experience gave prestige in building B2B with new retailers and prospects.  Ollie Quinn is found in an international sensibility; the Ollie customer is a global nomad in heels with a handbag.  We had an awesome experience receiving introductions and orders from across the globe.  The exposure of fashion’s largest trade event was invaluable.P1040822
  • Exhibiting with the Accessories Council at Project initially meant growing brand presence and sales. However, an unexpected yet truly great experience was meeting the other designers sharing the booth. Hearing their stories, processes, and insights is truly invaluable for a young brand like STYLESTRING. Though these relationships are new, having an open dialogue with contemporaries can lead to a positive support network and even collaboration down the line. I am so happy to have met such a wonderful group of dynamic, creative women.P1040812 (1)

 

 

 

 

NEW MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: LDR BRANDS

The Accessories Council would like to welcome new member, LDR Brands!

Sarah DeMarco, Nickole Raymond, and Lindsey Tervo-Clemmens are female executives from diverse career backgrounds. Together, they are the founders of LDR Brands and the epitome of the modern woman.

Their non-stop lifestyle required them to travel extensively with their laptops. On their frequent flights, these women realized that their tech accessories were stylish or functional – never both. These entrepreneurs sourced high quality materials to create the perfect laptop bag combining both fashion and practicality, thus establishing LDR Brands!

Check out this handbag from the LDR Porter Bag Collection:

LDR Brands Photo Assets

Features of this collection include:

  • 100% Italian Pebbled Leather and Suede
  • Eco-friendly shock absorbent padded computer section
  • Two interior pen/lip-gloss holders
  • One interior key/cord Keeper
  • One interior zipper pocket
  • One interior business card pocket
  • One interior phone pocket
  • Exterior zipper pocket and phone pocket slot
  • 7” handle drop with adjustable strap
  • 3 lbs., 16.5” L x 3” W and 12.75” H

LDR Brands Photo Assets

It is so exciting that these smart and successful women have created a product that never sacrifices fashion for function again.

To support LDR Brands, be sure to check out their Kickstarter Campaign. We agree, “It’s time to break up with your baggage”. Visit their website at www.ldrbrands.com to pre-order now!

Five Minutes with Auburn Jewelry’s Sam Levine!

SamSamantha Auburn Levine launched Auburn Jewelry, her line of beautiful handcrafted jewelry in 2012. Her passion for jewelry making blossomed back in high school while taking a jewelry and metals class, and she hasn’t stopped since! Samantha attended Skidmore College where she minored in Jewelry and Metals and then went on to graduate from law school. She then decided to pursue her passion and create jewelry full time.

 Auburn Jewelry offers a unique line of gorgeous sterling silver, 14K gold, brass, copper and enamel pieces. Each piece is individually crafted by hand with superior quality. Samantha’s line has even expanded into custom pieces for both men and women. The young jewelry designer continues to impress us over at the Accessories Council!

Q: Tell us how you actually got started making jewelry at home.

A: I was in eighth grade, going on ninth, and on a tour of the ominous high school that I would be attending the following September. One of the last stops on our walking tour of Horace Greeley High School was the Art Department. Most of the rooms were fairly mundane. But then, we walked into the metals studio with its foreign tools such as files, buffing wheels, saws and of course, an entire enclosed soldering bench, complete with four blow torches. I was amazed. “I could use a blowtorch in school?” I thought to myself. “They trust us with this? How is that possible?”

From that moment on I knew I had found my calling and the rest will be etched in history as I spent the next four years perfecting the skills that were being hammered into me.

Fast forward to December of 2011, Hannukah was rapidly approaching. But unlike most young adults my age I decided to ask, or should I say beg, for my very own metals studio. As I tried to persuade my neurotic Jewish parents that having a blowtorch in our house wasn’t that dangerous, the dream of being able to create jewelry in our basement was slowly turning into a possible reality.

About a week after the last of the eight candles had been lit, melted and the menorah was put back in its place I was finally able to convince the Levines that the studio was a fantastic idea. Shortly thereafter boxes of all shapes and sizes began arriving at our house. Big ones, small ones, ones the size of flex shafts, pliers and table top drills. As I began setting up my new equipment my fourteen year old self’s dream was officially coming true.

Q: What are three words would you use to describe Auburn Jewelry?

A: Trendy, Classic and Fun

Q: Where do you pull inspiration when creating new pieces?

A: When I create new pieces I’m inspired by trends, the current market and most of all my own style and my friends’ style. For example, I added Radiant Orchid to our standard color list this year when Pantone announced that Radiant Orchid was the color of 2014.

I only design pieces that I would wear. I love simple, elegant jewelry that can be worn with any outfit.  Our pieces are simple yet so custom and personalized. Our customers can order the silhouette of any shape in one of our pendants.

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Q: What was the first piece you ever made?

A: I’ve been making jewelry by hand since I was 14, so the first piece I ever made was a ring, but the first piece I ever sold were a pair of earrings. They are our spiral plannished earrings in sterling silver.

Q: What actually goes into the process of making the jewelry?

A: Every single piece is made by hand in my basement metals studio. I cut out every shape that goes in every pendant: every letter, every animal, every monogram. I make the sterling “outters,” as I’ve coined them from start to finish, forming the metal, soldering it together and soldering the loop on. I fill each pendant and then sand and buff them as well. It’s a process, but seeing the finished pieces makes it totally worth it

Q: What advice would you give to other young men and women who to start their own business?

A: I would tell them not to give up on their dreams. Starting my own jewelry business was my goal since I was 14 years old. I minored in jewelry and metals in college but then went to law school. I launched the business with a year left in school. Since graduation I’ve been making jewelry full-time. It’s never too late to do what you love.

Q: What accessory could you never live without?

A: My Auburn Jewelry monogram pendant – I wear it everyday, even to the gym and in the shower. It never comes off. It’s the perfect completer piece to any outfit.

Q: What can we expect next from Auburn Jewelry?

A: We just launched our new updated website! And Auburn Jewelry is also going to be featured on David Tutera’s new season of CELEBrations on Sept. 12th. Make sure to tune in!

Auburn Jewelry

Left to Right: Buddha Pendant, Monogram Necklace with Leather Cord and Silver Chain, Double Interlocking Ring 

For more information on Auburn Jewelry, visit www.auburn-jewelry.com!

Start the new semester right with these back-to-school accessories!

This week we’re featuring our favorite fall pieces that will help you or a loved one get ready for the first day of school!

Seoul Print Backpack with Laptop Protection from Kipling
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Photo courtesy of Kipling
Kipling’s best-selling backpack is equipped with padded shoulder straps, a durable exterior and roomy interior. It easily fits textbooks and essentials, plus it has a protective sleeve for your laptop, too! 13″ x 17.75″ x 7.25″ Weight: 1.5 lbs.
Available at: http://www.kipling-usa.com

Personalized Coco Hoodie from Boy Meets Girl
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Photo courtesy of Boy Meets Girl
For her signature logo collection, designer Stacy Igel captures the innocent spark between boy and girl with vintage cameos and you get to design the rest! Anything from a monogram of your initials to special dates can be embroidered on these cozy hooded sweatshirts.
A few great ideas: Graduation Gifts (e.g.: Yale Alumna and UofM Alumna), Sorority Events (e.g.: Mr. ZBT and Mrs. AXO), Sports Teams (e.g.: Giant and Jets), Pop Culture (e.g.: Peeta and Katniss).
Available at: http://www.boymeetsgirlusa.com

14 Piece Scratch and Sniff Elastics from Almar
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Photo courtesy of Almar
These fun & colorful elastics are scented when you scratch them & are a great accessory for any active little girl at the school playground!
Available at: http://www.almarsales.com

Cashmink Scarf with Mariel Check from Fraas
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Photo courtesy of Fraas
This scarlet scarf is the perfect accessory for adding a pop of color to any Fall outfit, plus it’s super soft and 100% acrylic! Dimensions: 30×180 cm
Available at: http://store.fraas.com/1291_home.html

Original Briefcase from Filson70256-main-410Photo courtesy of Filson
This Filson briefcase is extremely durable and features a wide carrying compartment, 2 full-length open pockets and sewn-on compartments for a calculator, business cards, writing utensils and more. It is also water repellant and has an interior brass clasp to secure keys! 16″ W x 12 1/2″ H x 4″ D
Available at: http://www.filson.com

Bamboo Dial Green Swarovski Cork Strap from Sprout100346_83_1
Photo courtesy of Sprout
This fashionable watch is eco-friendly! It has a natural cork strap with organic cotton backing and green stitching as well as a lovely lime green bamboo dial with 12 clear advanced crystal markers from Swarovski Elements.
Available at: http://www.sproutwatches.com

Fahlu Glasses from Web EyewearScreen Shot 2014-07-28 at 3.46.23 PMPhoto courtesy of Web
These unique and bright glasses are super trendy and will male your classmates and co-workers wish they needed glasses too!
Available at: http://www.weyewear.com/en/

Cascade Keychain from MujusScreen Shot 2014-07-28 at 3.17.10 PM
Photo courtesy of Mujus
Make your set of keys easier to spot with this colorful and eco-friendly Mujus keychain! Handmade in Ecuador and Peru out of Tagua seeds, this piece is also very lightweight so you’ll have an extra dose of style without weighing down your bag or pocket.
Available at: https://www.mujus.com

Brighten Up Your Summer with Our Favorite Travel Accessories!

This week, we’re featuring our favorite summer travel accessories we think would be perfect for your vacation adventures!

Onsie Katie iPhone Wallet from Chic Buds
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The Onesie Katie from Chic Buds is most definitely a travel must-have! This case has a secure wristlet strap and can hold two credit cards. It’s camera-friendly for your picture-perfect summer moments, with easy screen access and a secret magnet closure.
- Available at: http://chicbuds.com

Black Lace Garter with Pockets from GirlyGoGarter

GarterThis one-of-a-kind piece is the answer to every girl’s prayers! This black GirlyGoGarter adheres to your thigh with secure grippers and closes with soft, size-adjusting Velcro. Both the outer and inside layers have comfortable pockets that can hold up to 3 lbs! Perfect for storing your iPhone or passport under a skirt or dress.
- Available at: http://girlygogarter.com

Purple & Green Reusable Sraws from Straw Envy
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All Straw Envy products are FDA approved and dentist recommended to keep your teeth pearly white when enjoying drinks like coffee and tea, which can stain them. Unlike most reusable straws, the plastic used to make these are also safe for hot drinks. This pack includes 1 round purple straw, 1 round green straw and a carrying case for storing in your purse.
- Available at: http://strawenvy.com

Hip Hip Hooray Notebook from Bella J
NotebookThis colorful Bella J notebook can make for a wonderful travel journal! It has a cardboard bound cover with rounded corners, an embellished expandable inner pocket for storing things like tickets and postage stamps, and an elastic closure to protect your pages
- Available at: http://www.bellaj.com

Calypso Earrings from Julie Vos
EarringsJulie Vos’s beautifully carved medallion earrings are delicately detailed with a chalcedony gemstone set in the center and remind us of a radiant sun – a great accessory for a day on the beach or a tropical island!
- Available at: http://www.julievos.com

Red Textured Clutch by MeDusa
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Make a statement with this bright handmade clutch purse from MeDusa! The mesmerizing floral texture is extremely unique and the material is durable and easy to clean. This combination makes for a must-have accessory for partying in any continent!
- Available at: http://boticca.com/medusa/

Ave Des Champs Elysees Necklace by NylaStar
NecklaceEmbrace your chic Parisian side with this lovely NylaStar gold-plated street sign necklace with “Avenue Des Champs Elysees” embossing. It also features four little crystal accents on each corner for some extra glam.
- Available at: http://www.nylastar.com

The Guardian Print Silk Scarf by Florian London
Scarf
Get the London look with this bright Guardian scarf featuring the brand’s signature illustrated design. This piece was woven in fine soft silk and finished with hand-rolled hems; perfect for adding an unexpected twist to any summer outfit!
- Available at: http://www.florianlondon.com

Do You Want to Be Featured at Our Holiday Press and Shopping Event?

Does your brand have the must-have gift item for this holiday season? If so, we want to feature you at our

 

HOLIDAY PRESS EVENT & 

FIRST-EVER SHOPPING DAY!

 

The Accessories Council is once again inviting top fashion bloggers, social media personalities, and traditional short-lead press to preview our favorite gift items for the upcoming holiday season!
 
And, for the first time ever, we’re hosting a special day that’s open to the public for holiday shopping!
On night one, members of the press will gather at The Manhattan House to enjoy cocktails and light bites while Accessories Council president, Karen Giberson, and special guest co-host, Lilliana Vazquez, present the Accessories Council’s top holiday gift items.Lilliana Vazquez is a style expert who is changing the way women shop cheaply and chicly. As founder and creative director of CheapChias.com, she gives frugal fashionistas a daily place to find advice, deals and inspiration. She is a contributor to the “Today” show, “Access Hollywood,” “E! News” and the “Rachael Ray Show,” and has made more than 500 appearances on NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, E!, Bravo and The Style Network. Lilliana will be on hand to showcase the Accessories Council top gift picks and offer advice on how to stay budget friendly this holiday season!
Attending press will receive item details (product name, price, and where to buy) to share on their social media platforms to help raise consumer awareness for the upcoming holiday shopping season. Coverage from our previous press events in 2013 has generated hundreds of thousands of impressions. And, #ACTOPPICKS, our official press event hashtag, has reached top trending status on Twitter after each press event!
Then, on day two, participating brands will have the opportunity to set up a table in The Manhattan House Lobby to sell their collections to residents and guests!

 

DAY ONE: Holiday Press Event

Tuesday, November 19th 

6:00pm – 8:00pm

The Manhattan Club at The Manhattan House

 

DAY TWO: Holiday Shopping Day

Wednesday, November 20th 

11:00am – 7:00pm

The Manhattan House Lobby

 Accessories Council Member participation fee: $2000*

Non-member participation fee: $2500*

All participating brands are also required to contribute fifty (50) 

of the chosen item to gift to attending press.**

If your brand is interested in participating, please contact Carolyn atcarolyn@accessoriescouncil.org for more details!

  

*Single-day opportunities also available. Please inquire.*

**Some exceptions may apply.** 

New Member Spotlight: IX Style

The Accessories Council would like to welcome new member, IX Style!

IX-Style

 Photo courtesy of IX Style.

As frequent visitors of Guatemala, Francesca and John Kennedy, the brother and sister duo behind the founding of IX Style, noticed that each during each visit it became more evident that the country their family originated from was plagued by poverty, violence, a lack of education, and an alarming need for clean water. Although they were already aware of the plights of the country, on a recent trip Francesca witnessed children drinking toxic water from the once beautiful Lake Atitlan that Francesca knew she had to do something to help the residents of the surrounding area, and thus IX Style was born.

IX Style’s mission is “to provide clean drinking water to children. While their focus and heart is in Guatemala, some of their partners help children worldwide. No child is more important than the other.” Inspired by the book “Start Something That Matters” by Tom’s founder Blake Mycoskie, IX Style sells affordable, high quality shoes that are handmade by artisans in Guatemala. The shoes are a take on the typical Mayan shoes called Huaraches that are sold at the marketplaces surrounding the lake. Although huaraches are known for being a simple style and lasting only a few wears, IX Style has recreated these shoes with durable materials such as leather, cotton, and rubber in order to make a shoe that will allow for wear through many seasons. For each pair of shoes that is sold, fifteen percent of the profits will go to the charities that IX Style is affiliated with.

IX Style prides itself on empowering women, as mothers are the main lifeline and most crucial figure to these children. The company is currently partnered with Asociacion Puente, Spanish for Bridge Association. The organization was founded by the former First Lady of Guatemala, Wendy Berger, and Enda Morales and strives to reduce extreme poverty through assisting women in the development of skills that will allow them to help support and educated their families. Once joining the program and attending 18 months of training, the women receive a water filtration system in their homes. Throughout the duration of the training, the women learn basic education, sanitation, nutrition, self-esteem, and protection from domestic violence. These amazing women are also taught skills that will allow them to find jobs, and once they have a flow of income, they are taught how to save ten percent of what they make.  In addition to partnering with Asociacion Puente, IX Style also donates a portion of the proceeds to Charity Water, an organization that works to end the water crisis worldwide.

Although IX Style just started in April, you can already find them at retailers across the US, Asia, and Australia, and at resorts in Necker Island and Cabo San Lucas. If you love the shoes but don’t live in a state or country with a retailer, visit www.ix-style.com for all of your IX Style needs!

For more of the story behind this amazing initiative visit www.ix-style.com!

New Member Spotlight: Matterial Fix

The Accessories Council would like to welcome one of our newest members, Matterial Fix!

Matterial Fix Jewelry Indian Inspiration

Photo courtesy of Matterial Fix.

Inspired by a trip to India, jewelry designer Courtney Sims felt the overwhelming need to encourage the empowerment of girls and young women around the world. Throughout the course of the year following that trip, with much brainstorming, designing, and the creation of an action plan focused on partnerships with non-profit organizations, Matterial Fix was born. It’s goal: to create beautiful jewelry pieces that women want to wear and financially support non-profit partners in their cause for girl.

Matterial Fix collaborates solely with non-profits that support the empowerment of girls and young women. 10% of all profits made during the collaboration go to the charity. Every six months, collaboration with a new non-profit is formed. The culture and elements of the country in which the non-profit is established can be seen as the main influence towards the design of each collection. This season, Matterial Fix has partnered with Freedom Firm, an organization dedicated to the rescue and restoration of sex trafficking victims in India. The best part about each collection is that even if a client has no knowledge of the background of the brand, his or her purchase is still going towards a cause that is near and dear to the heart of the brand.

matterial fix

Photo courtesy of Matterial Fix.

It is Courtney’s and the Matterial Fix team’s mission to help the world understand that “girls matter, and when properly supported they become self-aware young women who get the choice to be educated. Given the chance, they become empowered to make choices that play a meaningful role in ending the cycles of poverty. We believe that in caring for a girl’s needs across the board, we have a really good chance of making sure she lives a long and healthy life– changing her life, her family’s, and her community’s.”  Through this mission, Courtney and Matterial Fix have created a distinct difference between themselves and other brands in the market; the ability to literally impact the lives of other people and not just their wardrobe through design. Although the creation of beautiful things brings much satisfaction, the greatest satisfaction of all for Courtney comes from knowing that with each piece sold she and her brand will be helping a girl in need.

Keep an eye out for Matterial Fix’s next season collaboration, featuring a Peruvian influence!

For more information on Matterial Fix and Freedom Firm visit www.matterialfix.com and www.freedom.firm.in

New Member Spotlight: ShopBevel

The Accessories Council would like to welcome one of our newest members, ShopBevel!

Shopbevel logo

Founded by Courtney McColgan as a platform for new and emerging jewelry designers to have their products noticed without having to incur the high costs of manufacturing and public relations, ShopBevel is bringing the jewelry design process to a whole new level. What started as a Stanford business student’s “desire to bring to market the best in jewelry design” has now grown from a jewelry design competition held via Facebook under the name CrowdJewel into a jewelry design market place with over 156,000 votes on products since its website launch in March 2013. The greatest perk of submitting work on ShopBevel is that although a submission may not be chosen for production, the designer has now gained free publicity and recognition just by having a submission on the site.

In a process that takes over a month for completion, ShopBevel accepts submissions from designers ShopBevel Design Challenges. Throughout a two week time period, community members vote on the submitted designs. Once voting is closed, the top designs to be featured on the site’s Homepage are chosen based on the outcome of community voting, social media reactions, and the ShopBevel team. The winning designs are then sent to China for manufacturing in batches of 50-100, making each item limited edition, and are returned to the U.S to be sold on ShopBevel.com.

shopbevel design winners

Photo courtesy of ShopBevel’s Facebook page.

Not only does the site benefit these emerging designers, but the innovative design and manufacturing technique allows consumers access to lower price point products with limited production, something that is extremely hard to find in the fashion jewelry sector.

What ShopBevel piece will you be accessorizing with?

To explore the world of ShopBevel visit www.shopbevel.com!

New Member Spotlight: JOANNA MAXHAM

The Accessories Council would like to welcome our newest member, JOANNA MAXHAM!

JOANNA MAXHAM LUXURY HAND HELD

In 2009, after realizing that she yearned for something more than what her successful Marketing career could offer, Joanna Maxham decided to follow her true passion, Fashion. Dabbling first in scarves and jewelry, Joanna quickly realized that designing handbags was her calling.

When creating her own line, Joanna’s goal, which is clearly seen in her current designs, was “to create clean, modern handbags of perfect proportions, made from the finest leather, and with great attention to detail. It is through a collaboration with a small European atelier with over 35 years of experience and a focus on traditional craftsmanship that JOANNA MAXHAM design has been able to continuously deliver a “luxurious combination of style and utility.”

joanna maxham bag

Photo left courtesy of Bonfaire. Photos middle and right courtesy of JOANNA MAXHAM.

Exuding class and elegance with a touch of downtown edge, JOANNA MAXHAM has a designs that will work for any stylish girl regardless of her age or personal style.  Since the Brand’s launch in 2011 - Joanna’s designs were featured on TV shows such as “Girls” and “Goodwife” and have been recognized by press both nationally and internationally, including Top 100 Best Bags by Vogue UK. The question is, what gorgeous bag will you choose?

To shop, visit www.joannamaxham.com or www.jooraccess.com/joannamaxham.

New Member: House of Murat

The Accessories Council would like to welcome new member, House of Murat!

judith murat, house of murat, fine jewelry, journey into the land of murat

Photos courtesy of Judith Murat.

Judith Murat has always been a part of the fashion community. Early on, Judith began her career as a top model, working for Eileen Ford and William Morris Agency. After 25 successful years in the business and appearing in countless magazines and television spots, Judith decided to transition from being the art to creating the art. Studying classical art at the Chicago Institute of Art and furthering her education at the New York Art Students’ League and The Armory Art Center, she honed her craft.

It was at her first sculpture and portrait art show, held at the Jimmy Barker Gallery, that she had a conversation with an admirer of her work, more specifically a jewelry manufacturer, that would change her life forever. In 1998, Judith Murat changed her concentration from oils on canvas and sculptures to precious gems and 18kt gold. With designs so original and noticeable, Judith Murat was being carried by Saks Fifth Avenue in Palm Beach and Dallas with in a year of its first inception.

judith murat charm bracelet, new butterfly necklace, rubelite necklace, rose ring, graduation gifts

Photos courtesy of Judith Murat.

One year after her introduction to the fashion world as a designer, Judith Murat created House of Murat, based out of her Palm Beach atelier. Extravagant, one of a kind pieces made her a hit in a town known for its charity balls and social soirees. Such high demand for her pieces on the Palm Beach social circuit led her to expand her collection to include men’s accessories, cufflinks, studs, and lapels. Having ventured over to the West Coast in 2006, Judith Murat Fine Jewelry has made a name for itself on red carpets such as the Golden Globes, and has been worn by celebrities such as Anne Hathaway, Tyra Banks, Jennifer Lopez, Eva Longoria, and Jennifer Hudson.

Most recently, Judith Murat has been working on a book entitled, “Judy’s Journey into the Land of Murat.” The gold-leafed hardcover book, co-authored by Charles (Sunny) Castor, tells the tale of a magical journey to the land of Murat, where all of Judy’s inspiration lies.”The fable, which spans across the ocean, seashore,forest and universe, unearths Judith’s gorgeous jewels while inviting readers to learn the meaning of happiness.” Last Thursday night, Princess Yasmin Aga Khan, Muffie Potter Aston, and Somers Farkas invited Murat’s closest friends and fans to the Alzheimer’s Association’s summer kick-off event to preview the designer’s summer collection, pictured above and available just in time for graduation season, and to toast Murat’s first book. The book was such a success, it nearly sold out by the end of the night!

judith murat, DuJour.com, book signing, house of murat, judy's journey into land of muratPhotos courtesy of DuJour.com 

The book will be sold for $65.00 at independent retailers including The Classic Bookstore, Main Street News, Barzina and The Palm Beach Bookstore in addition to Amazon.com and her website: www.Judithmurat.com.

New Member: Mocha Projects

The Accessories Council would like to welcome our newest member, Mocha Projects!

mocha projects

Established by Katie Morita in 2004, Mocha Projects is a full-service fashion design consulting firm. The company, founded on the premise that “using the best talent and listening to the clients needs are critical to a successful partnership,” offers design services such as trend analysis, conceptual design, accessories design, print design, revitalization of established brands, and new brand launching. Mocha Projects also offers resource recommendations such as material resources, domestic and international manufacturing resources, and technologically advanced resources specifically catered towards the fashion industry.

MOCHA PROJECTS

Photos courtesy of Mocha Projects

Through Katie’s expertise in each step of the design process including; trend analysis, initial product conceptualization, sketching, specing, prototype correcting, material sourcing, and factory placement,  Mocha Projects has been able to consult on design projects for Tory Burch, Tommy Hilfiger, Echo Design, and Uniqlo to name a few.

To have Katie and Mocha Projects consult on your next project visit: www.mochaprojects.com/contact.

Welcome Roma Industries!

We are excited to welcome new Accessories Council member Roma Industries!

Color gatorImage courtesy of Roma Industries

Roma Industries is a belt design-based company for the elegant, trend savvy, modern woman. The company designs all of their belts in-house from start to finish. In the words of Creative Director Marissa Gaster, Roma Industries focuses on you, the customer; “The designers and I always visualize the women who wear our belts: what is she wearing, what is she doing, and who is she seeing? The belt should be a piece the woman wants to wear time and time again, and for years to come.”

Also a participant in the AC’s USA Made program; Roma Industries’ New York team’s designs are constructed by highly skilled sample makers at their Florida factory. In addition to Roma Industries’ in-house brand, WCM, they design, manufacture, and market belts under exclusive license agreements with Nanette Lepore and Isaac Mizrahi, resulting in diverse high end collections embracing a wide range of trends and styles.

Roma Industries produces beautiful designs using leathers and exotic skins. Check them out this week at the Accessories Council’s booth at the WWD Magic Convention in Las Vegas!

Welcome Kaitlyn Elizabeth!

We are excited to announce another new member to the Accessories council: Welcome Kaitlyn Elizabeth!

Kaitlyn Elizabeth Lg Crossbody - Yellow

Photo courtesy of Kaitlyn Elizabeth

Kaitlyn Elizabeth, a brand designed by Kaitlyn Doherty, was  launched in 2011 after Doherty won that year’s Independent Handbag Designer Award (go Kaitlyn!). Doherty’s debut collection is inspired by time spent in Prague and the city’s architecture. Check out the yellow Prague Crossbody (above), we love the studs exposed zippers!

Kaitlyn Elizabeth Leather Foldover Bag

Photo courtesy of Kaitlyn Elizabeth

In March 2012 Doherty was selected as one of four Designers-In-Residence for the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator. The prestigious one-year program is designed to help promote local designers from within the Philadelphia community. With her stay in the program ending soon, we can’t wait to see what Kaitlyn comes up with next!

Welcome Andrew Hamilton Crawford!

We are happy to extend warm welcome to new Accessories Council member Andrew Hamilton Crawford!

AHC Logo

Photo courtesy of Andrew Hamilton Crawford

Andrew Hamilton Crawford is a New York-based jewelry line created by the Southern-born designer Chad Crawford. Crawford takes his inspiration from everyday life, creating charismatic pieces, each design with a unique story behind it meant to be re-lived with every wear.

S105_ColorRunPhoto courtesy of Andrew Hamilton Crawford

Chad Crawford’s passion for jewelry extends back to his childhood, his family’s chain of fine jewelry stores; Crawford Jewelers, and his continuing work in the industry in diamond acquisition for Tiffany & Co. (another AC member!). Chad decidedly pushed his knowledge of jewelry with the inception of Andrew Hamilton Crawford. Andrew Hamilton Crawford mixes fine with fun and whimsical fashion; Chad took his Southern heritage and melded it with his life as a New Yorker to create a collection of contemporary classic sophistication.

AHC_armcandy

Photo courtesy of Andrew Hamilton Crawford

Andrew Crawford Hamilton is a playful, attention-grabbing line that lies deep within the tradition of luxury fashion jewelry, creating timeless pieces of art to be worn by all generations. Worn by celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey, Rachel Ray, Beyoncé Knowles, Paula Abdul, Fergie, and Serena Williams among many others, we can’t wait to get our hands on it!

Be sure to check out and follow Andrew Hamilton Crawford on their Facebook and Twitter!