Five minutes with handbag designer Hayley Miller

We love your handbag designs, not only for their practically, but the brand you are creating with your luxury style ‘HM’ designed tag and finer detail. We can’t wait until your latest collection is out at the end of April.

Thank you for your kind comments. Even though my collections are for accessories, I admire so many designers and fabrics from all over the fashion industry sectors. I love chiffon, the waves it creates and illusion of lightness is wonderful – A sure way to instantly create elegance.

I admire LuLu Guiness as a designer, I love her philosophy and down to earth nature, a well as her designs. You can see the personalisation she projects into them.

What sparked the fashion lightbulb for you to want to design handbags?

Travelling in the USA was an eye opener to fashion, especially in LA. Its more open, outrageous and forceful. However, visiting boutiques in the fashion district, a common request was for an ‘everyday’ bag that’s got a little something special about it. This is where the brand started. I wanted to create that handbag you could use everyday, but still have it practical and stylish.

Making the decision to use environmentally friendly leather in your handbags means that you have to build this into the cost of each bag. It’s something that more designers are considering. How important is this to you?

None of the leathers are from animals killed purely for their skins. I may pay a higher price to ensure this, but I believe it is important that any animal is not mistreated or slaughtered just to produce a handbag.

Who and what is your greatest fashion inspiration?

Fashion has always been a part of my life from a very young age. Dressing up, shuffling around in my mums high heels and stealing her makeup when she wasnt looking. I was intrigued by how people looked so different and had their own styles from one another. I guess this was the beginning of where I find my inspirations because the first place I look for a new look or inspiration is the street. What I see walking around town, colours that pop and how people wear it.

I’m especially inspired by neutral colours and finding a way to complement them with on trend colours for the season.

What’s always in your handbag?

A notebook and pen! I constantly write lists and notes for new collections, inspirations, places to visit and to-do lists. I could not survive without it.

Plus, I’ve always got a pretty lip gloss and my mobile as my essentials. I always carry around my good luck charm which is from my mother, a small stone with the word ‘Growth and Faith’ engraved onto it, and also a note from my partner, which reads ‘You Can Have Anything You Want, If You Want It Bad Enough’. I’m very sentimental and never leave home without them.

Your website has had a positive response from both press and customers. It’s actually what made us sit up and notice you because you clearly know how important marketing is.

It (the website) took a lot of planning and late nights working on it, but I’m very proud at what I managed to achieve with it.

As this is a debut collection, I’m hoping that the word will be spread and the quality of the handbags will speak for themselves. I’m already preparing for S/S 2013.

I will be approaching buyers from April this year, so the handbags will be on sale shortly after that. I only want to work with stores that have the same passion as I do, to provide luxury accessories to the fashion industry and women everywhere.

Hayley Miller Handbags – providing luxury accessories to the fashion industry and women everywhere.

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