Exclusive Q&A with Handbag Extraordinaire Kelly Locke

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"Kelly Locke Petite Bardot Clutch"

Seeking the perfect clutch for one of summer’s must-attend events?  Look no further!  I can personally guarantee Kelly Locke, handbag extraordinaire to the stars, produces the exact ‘hand candy’ you are requesting. Of coarse he makes more than clutches…handbags of various sizes as well as iPad slip covers and even a few belts are all in tow for his Spring/Summer 2011 collection. Proceed with caution, for you may find yourself addicted to the exotic skins and intricate top-stitching!

"Kelly Locke Saskia Clutch"

Since the label’s creation in 2009, the Kelly Locke brand has been focused on exposing the textural elegance of materials such as anaconda from South America and perch from Africa by pairing the skins with glamorous gold trims and petrified wood zipper pulls.  With prices ranges from the $300s to the $2,000s and can be found online at Vivre.com, Church in LA, Henri Bendel in NYC, and Harvey Nichols in Hong Kong.

I was able to dig a bit deeper with designer Kelly Locke concerning a few topics of interest…

Haute Living:  Innovative details and techniques can be noticed on several Kelly Locke products. What sparked the idea behind your unique pyramid studs featured on designs such as the Mini Bardot Clutch and Pandora Clutch?

Kelly Locke: “The pyramid studs were inspired by post-Renaissance European architectural details. The size and scale of my pyramid studs reflects a modern aesthetic, as opposed to more traditional Gothic.”

"Kelly Locke Mini Bardot Clutch"

HL: Several brands today focus on mass production and creating a product that will quickly go out of trend simply to profit; I hear this is contrary to your approach. What are your comments on this issue?

KL: “I spend a great deal of time and energy to establish resources for unique and precious materials so that they can be offered at highly competitive prices as well as maintain a high level of quality. I don’t believe in cutting corners to increase profit and am not interested in mass production. My goal since launching the line has always been to make a product that has longevity both in design appeal and quality of craftsmanship.”

"Kelly Locke Mimi Clutch"

HL: How has Kelly Locke continued to contribute to the impoverished regions of which the brand initially wanted to support?

KL: “Originally, I felt the need to try to bring production and more jobs to a region of the world that was experiencing an economic depression and has a tremendous amount of poverty we rarely see in our lives.  However, the desire to establish more sustainable production in Latin America was not possible with the select group of styles and limited specialized production inherent to the brand.  Although the line is produced in Los Angeles, I continue to purchase the majority of my skins and materials in Brazil and Argentina – countries where economic growth is still a struggle. For example, our main supplier from Argentina was able to subsidize a tannery there last year in order to keep these artisans from losing their livelihood.”

"Kelly Locke Ipad Case"

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