|By: Mariana L.|
New Yorker Monica Botkier first made her name in the industry as a photographer for magazines like Surface and Mademoiselle. Soon, her busy and creative lifestyle inspired her to create accessories to suit her needs. Her collection soon gained cult status, gathering fans among shoppers and celebrities alike. Heidi Klum, Angelina Jolie and Joy Bryant have been spotted with a Botkier bag in tow. The Botkier collection identifies itself as “An independent brand that marries luxury with utility”. The company is celebrated their five-year anniversary by launching an extensive shoe collection. The designer took some time out of her busy schedule to participate in Purse Page’s “5 Questions” series:
Mariana Leung, PursePage.com: What pieces from the Fall Collection are your personal favorites?
ML: With your background as a photographer, do you feel that you approach handbag design differently than designers with a conventional product design background? Do you consider how the purse will photograph?
MB: My approach is free from that of conventional designers. I think about the overall story of a woman’s life and her moments when she is wearing a Botkier bag or shoe. I enjoy photographing our campaigns but no, I design the accessories in 3D; reality!
ML: Tons of cash-strapped fans rejoiced when your collaboration with Target was announced. What were the main challenges of translating your trend-setting style and quality into a mass-market price point?
MB: PVC was the major challenge. Simply put, it doesn’t have the beautiful hand that leather does and is such an integral part of our handbags. We take quality so seriously and it was hard to relinquish that “control”.
ML: I have read that a major inspiration for your first collection was a desire to create the perfect handbag for yourself. Are there any other celebrities whose lifestyle or look act as your muse?
MB: Not directly. I do love Joy Bryant- she happens to be a friend and at one point we designed a group for Fall 2007 called the “Bryant” which was really bohemian cool.
ML: Many people find your bags sexy and edgy, in fact some men found the ‘Bianca’ Satchel particularly “voluptuous” : ) Do you purposely try to inject some sex appeal into your collection?
MB: I guess it’s somewhere in my mind all the time!
ML: Thanks Monica!
category: Interviews, Other designer Handbags