Shop Lara Lindsay :
How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?
I am a designer of luxury leather handbags, which focus on function as much as form. When designing I focus on what the bag will be used for whilst creating elegant silhouettes and clean shapes. I am a British designer with a very British style.
What sort of comments do you get about your designs?
I have been lucky enough to receive very positive comments on my designs, with people saying that the collection looks timeless and stylish, with a quintessentially English feel. I have also had return customers commenting on how they love the look of the leather as it ages and develops.
What is your background?
I studied History of Art at Bristol University and then went on to do an apprenticeship under the fantastic design Selina Cheong in North London. It was here that I learnt to design and make leather accessories first hand, with great tuition and opportunities. I started out on my own in 2012 and have been designing and making ever since, with the business ever growing, whilst keeping it local and British.
Which designers do you rate highly and why?
I love other British Accessories Designers like Ally Capellino and Mimi Berry, both brands with a similar ethos of being Made in British and the success to prove that it works. Designers with an emphasis on chic, simple style and quality materials, get my vote every time.
Tell us about your design process from concept, production and to the shelves…
As I have mentioned every element of the collection is designed and made in house in our Bristol studio. I am always on the look out for interesting shapes and constructions to incorporate into my designs. Initially I come up with a design, or often a few together and do endless sketches to visualise and make them cohesive. Next I make the sample bags, which I will personally then use for a period of time to make sure their function works as designed. Once happy with this the bag will then go into production and onto lovely customers.
How do you think your brand has developed?
The brand is still quite young but I feel that it has developed with an elegant, classic style into something which does not totally follow trends, yet will always be a sample fashion accessory.
What do you dislike most about your job?
I honestly don’t dislike any element of my job, its captivating and creatively challenging. It do wish there were more hours in the day sometimes, but that’s part of being your own boss!
What are your main achievements and what do you aim to achieve now? Past present and future
My main achievement is being able to sell a product which I have personally created though hard learnt skills, in the knowledge that it is of the highest possible quality and will last someone else a lifetime. This is a really pleasing thought! For the future I hope to be able to grow my business future and continue creating British made products to sell to a wider market.
What advice would you have for anyone starting out in (your field)?
Work at it and listen to others advise (sometimes with a pinch of salt), know your own goals and keep going.
Why do you think British design stands out on the global stage?
It seems that British design is synonymous with quality and luxury. In my field that is thanks to leading companies like Mulberry who have proven on the global market that Made in Britain is a stamp worth having! The more designers and brands that can live by this the better. I hope that with LARA LINDSAY as a brand we will only add to this very positive attitude to British design.