House of Borel, a new San Francisco-based luxury fashion house founded by Claire Borel, debuted their accessories as part of Michael Costello’s runway show on February 17th during Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week. The new line’s exotic-skin bags walked the runway in union with Michael Costello’s beautiful collection. The high-end brand focuses on luxury clothes and accessories made for travel. Their new collection consists of exotic-skin bags and shoes – all handmade in Italy – available March 2015 while the clothing line will launch Fall 2015. The line is inspired by her vivid memories of playing in her mother’s closet as a child and by Grace Kelly’s luxurious vacations. Charlotte Welch, the Executive Fashion Director for House of Borel, was there to share with us HOB’s vision for modern-day luxury with understated elegance!
House of Borel handbags (starting from the teal one): Borel Borsalina, Cairo, Maiden Lane, and Eve
Elena: What’s the inspiration of the season behind your handbags?
Charlotte: The colors and textures found while traveling to some of the worlds’ greatest cities. The House of Borel team went from London to Mexico City and many places in between to find inspiration that can work in many markets and with various luxury lifestyles. It has always been very important to us to keep a woman who is traveling internationally in the forefront of our minds when designing.
Elena: What’s the allure and the magic in the use of exotic skins?
Charlotte: The textures of exotic skins lend a sense of rarity and luxury to a woman’s look, and as our woman is a woman of the world, she gets a sense of excitement by finding accessory pieces that can bring an elevated sense of luxury to her look.
Elena: Do you have a certain definition of luxury as a designer? What makes fashion high-end?
Charlotte: Luxury is exclusive, special, and stylish and because style transcends time and location, luxury is an ongoing legacy for our woman. Fashion becomes high end through its details, from design to production, whether it’s a hand stitch, a fold, or fabric, every piece becomes elevated to high end through each of its components being thought out meticulously and brought together harmoniously.
Elena: Handbags are a product many women are very specific about. Which details in your handbags are designed to be that appealing and indispensable?
Charlotte: Our bags combine custom hardware molded in precious metals with vibrant and uniquely dyed skins. Everything is handcrafted by artisans whose skills have been passed down for generations, all lending to a final piece that creates an unforgettable product.
Elena: Are you pro-functionality or pro-design even when that’s not so convenient?
Charlotte: There must always be a harmonious balance between design and function. We keep our woman’s lifestyle in mind, while maintaining our vision for the design aesthetic of the collection. House of Borel collaborates with artists and stylists to make sure the hybrid of beauty and functionality is always achieved.
Elena: Handbags are aspirational, status-related and vanity-infused! Is there some sort of a dream element in your collection?
Charlotte: The dream is infused with the aspiration to achieve. Our team has dreamed of creating a brand that is more about achieving aspirations and less about vanity. The House of Borel woman has a status regardless of what she dreams because she is smart, well put together and successful. The dream of HOB is to consistently contribute to our clients confidence and help her look reflect her success.
Elena: How would you like your brand to evolve in the future?
Charlotte: Ideally we would like our brand to evolve into a coveted destination for elite shopping online. We are very driven towards becoming a brand that our customer can turn to when they are looking for something exclusive and precious.
Elena: You are showcasing in New York along with Michael Costello’s exquisite evening wear! How do you see this opportunity and what’s special in this city’s audience and market?
Charlotte: Michael Costello designs his evening wear for women who travel internationally for events and New York is an ambitious city that many of these women call home. Both of these concepts align with the House of Borel and we want to use NYFW to try to let the confident ambitious women that exist here know that we are going to be her next resource for travel conscious luxury.
Stay tuned for more House of Borel news soon! Love!!!