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Designer Spotlight: Laura Vela

By Laura Camerlengo

Laura Vela is a New York-based accessories designer whose luxury handbags for stylish, confident women have captured the attention of the fashion industry. BELLA NYC sat down with Vela to learn more her label and her Spring/Summer 2014 line. Listen in … 

When did you launch your eponymous handbag label? 

I showed at the accessories exhibit at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in 2011 – I was actually the youngest designer to show that year – and unveiled my first collection in 2012.

When did you know you wanted to be a designer?

For as long as I can remember, I have always had an affinity for fashion and travel. I was born in Spain, and lived in seven countries by the age of 16. After graduating from ESADE Business School in 2010, I moved to New York City to become a handbag designer. I studied at Parsons, The New School for Design, and worked at Prada and Bergdorf Goodman before launching my label.

What’s your design philosophy?

A woman’s handbag is the most personal part of her wardrobe. It should be a reflection of her, both inside and out. 

Tell us about your Spring/Summer 2014 line.

The Ramble On collection for Spring /Summer 2014 presents progressive handbag designs in premium leather with striking complements of exotic python skin. It was released exclusively through WiNK stores, one of New York’s leading fashion retailers, as well on my website.

What inspired this collection?

The collection’s inspiration was taken directly from my nomadic lifestyle. I saw the direct correlation between travel and the personal development of character – the emotions drawn from Parisian architecture or exotic landscapes of Buenos Aires. To facilitate the connection to the source of inspiration, each item has been named accordingly: The Pari bag tells a story of Paris romance, Trope of summer evenings in Saint Tropez, while Mia communicates the distinctive feel of Miami sunsets.

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