In July last year I was approached by the amazing Karishma from Kholo The Label, to design a limited edition clutch as a part of their 5 x 5 designer collaboration. Firstly, the proposal seemed too good to be true, I would get to design my very own bag with the help of an amazing fashion label (who is wonderfully sustainable, ethical and just generally made up of really good people), have my design brought to life into a physical product that I could keep and cherish forever, AND have that design sold online amongst some other majorly talented design ladies (check out more on the #KholoCollab here). Plus as if that wasn’t enough excitement, I could also win a trip to India to help design a piece for Kholo’s 2018 Collection. So, obviously I was in.
I knew I wanted my design to feature lettering, and when thinking about a phrase for the design, I kept coming back to Ooh la la! – a term often used to express excitement, which pretty much summarised my feelings about this whole situation so it felt fitting. I wanted the colours to feel like a little glimpse into my brain – I think by now my love of pink is fairly obvious, so this was always going to be a key colour, but with little pops of darker reds, softer hues, and brighter rust orange, I wanted to add some more playful sunset tones, and to stop it looking too candy coloured. I’m obsessed with tying silk scarves onto everything – my bags, my hair, my belts, and so I thought the addition of a silk scarf that complimented the overall design would be fun. (I also wanted this to be detachable so that I can put it on other things if I wanted to.) Then the more practical considerations like: it needed to fit my iPhone+, I needed to also be able to fit my standard weekend or evening belongings, it needed to be easy to carry, and I needed to be able to imagine it with my everyday wardrobe. And from all of that, this was the outcome…
When I sent this off to the team at Kholo I was nervous AF. It was the first time I’ve done anything like this, and I purely designed this with myself (selfishly) in mind. So when they came back and told me that they loved it I was beyond thrilled. I also thought (foolishly) that at this point my work here was done – the concept was approved, and artwork was supplied – usually as a graphic designer that’s when you pour yourself a generous glass of wine and kick back. But then there was fabric selection, colour matching, beading and embroidery options, and hardware decisions, which was even harder than creating the original concept! Then there was the samples – we got first samples, second samples and then a few more samples done before everything was perfect, and with amazing guidance from Karishma, we ended up with fabrics, colours and embroidery that I am SO SO proud of and incredibly excited to have in my hands, literally, as a product that I’ve designed.
So, a big thank you to Karishma and the team at Kholo for this opportunity and for your support! This has been so so so much fun, and my clutch is already in high rotation in my wardrobe – I will probably need to buy a backup in case I spill coffee on it… a likely scenario!
The Harley Quinn & Co X Kholo the Label limited edition clutch is available to buy here.