CraftStylish at the Independent Handbag Designer Awards

comments (0) June 24th, 2008     

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Laurel_Tuohy Laurel_Tuohy, member
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Darren Wallace winning the Independent Handbag Designer Award for Best Handmade Handbag. From left, Emily Blumenthal, founder of the awards, Wallace, and presenter Debbie Stoller.
CraftStylishs Nikki Smith with Best Handmade Bag winner, designer Darren Wallace.
Ta-da! The winning bag in the handmade category was the striking
Sabrina clutch, a hand-sewn treasure in Cayman Crocodile by Darren
Wallace.
Darren Wallace winning the Independent Handbag Designer Award for Best Handmade Handbag. From left, Emily Blumenthal, founder of the awards, Wallace, and presenter Debbie Stoller.

Darren Wallace winning the Independent Handbag Designer Award for Best Handmade Handbag. From left, Emily Blumenthal, founder of the awards, Wallace, and presenter Debbie Stoller.

Photo: Laurel Tuohy

A few hundred of Manhattan's most stylish, and craftiest, denizens were on hand last Wednesday at the second annual Independent Handbag Designer Awards, a party celebrating the best indie bag designers from all over the world. The event, sponsored by www.handbagdesigner101.com and its founder, Emily Blumenthal, celebrated bag designers in several categories. Although several hundred designers entered, Blumenthal and the other judges culled the list to five finalists in five categories, plus a fan favorite bag. The judges included Sex and the City stylist Rebecca Weinberg and Nylon magazine Fashion Director Dani Stahl.

 

The winners were:

Best Handbag in Overall Style and Design: Lui Antinous

Best Handmade Handbag: Darren Wallace

Best Student-Made Handbag: Clara Yoo

Most Socially Responsible Handbag: Bridget Reid for PFYH

Best Green Handbag: Helen Marcoschamer for Ecoist

Audience Fan Favorite: Suzanna Scarola for Bellabags

A lifetime acheivement award was also presented to red-carpet favorite and miniaudiere designer extraordinaire, Judith Leiber. The uberfamous designer of tiny, bejeweled handbags was on hand to collect her award, and many of her signature bags were on display in the lobby.

Of course, being CraftStylish, we were most enamored of the handmade bag category. The winner, Darren Wallace, was presented his award by Stitch 'n' Bitch author, Bust magazine founder, and all-around craft diva Debbie Stoller.

Wallace's winning bag, the Sabrina clutch, is made of rich, brown Cayman Crocodile. Wallace's entry was hand-sewn and wired. The leather-and-skin enthusiast designer was thrilled with his win and smiled ear to ear after he heard his name. In addition to his winning entry, he carried a bag of his own creation, an attache-sized, hard-sided bag made of a patent, black, pebbled leather that has undertones of crimson when viewed in the right light. His friend was carrying another Darren Wallace original, an alligator-embossed skin black backpack with metal studs adorning the outer face.

Our exclusive interview with Wallace is coming soon to CraftStylish...

 

posted in: handbag, designer, award

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