story by Seth Friedermann
photos and styling by Aeric Meredith-Goujon
makeup by Samantha Lennon
hair by Sonia Castleberry
model is Janessa from Soul Artist Management
“Frankly speaking, I have to say that I think my sister and I, we were quite naive when we started, which in fact did help us. We were ‘virgin’ so we had nothing that forbid us, there were no borders. We created bags we wanted to wear and there was nothing more than that.” That is an oft repeated truth in the fashion industry. Creating something new and fresh that catches buyer and consumer eyes can, oddly enough, be easier if you don’t know what the industry says you’re “supposed” to be doing. Leona Erziak, along with her sister Hasna, is one half of the team behind the fast rising handbag brand that carries their name.
In a Lena Erziak bag one will find all of the features and experience all of the benefits that come from a luxury handbag. The fit and finish is impeccable. The interior design is owner-centered and reflects a modern women’s needs. But the zip and zing is in the design of the outside. It’s difficult to describe a single signature element that defines the Lena Erziak bag’s style. That is because the sisters enjoy playing around with different concepts each season. In the Fall 2011 Collection you will find an abundance of rough gold accents and soft textures adorning traditional handbags. But you will also find a number of creative and whimsical shapes such as their delightful Adam and Aime designs.
As you view the Lena Erziak collections, you slowly get a sense of what drives their designs. It is client-driven, yes, but not market-driven. They don’t waste time on trends and aren’t trapped by tradition. They still feel the freedom to explore and experiment and are motivated primarily by a desire to help their clients stand out in a very crowded scene.
“I think that it’s for a discerning woman who owns Chanel, owns all of those bags but she wants to be different she wants to step out from the crowd,” said the designer. Combine that approach with the fact that this is a very, very young label, and their future is intensely promising.