I had the honor of sitting on the pre-judging panel of the Indie Handbag Designer Awards this past weekend. 800 contestants, 8 categories and a whole bunch of creative, cool and relatively kooky submissions. Being somewhat of a bag lady myself, I have really honed in over the years on what my aesthetic is: classic, timeless and structured. If I'm going trendy, it's a Tory Burch Robinson Tote and mini. If it's a major statement I am making, it's the Hermes Birkin. So going into the competition, I knew what I would like and what I wouldn't. Some trends absolutely emerged from the many submissions. Orange is the "it" color and the all natural, cork is a fast rising star. Staying true to my personal bag style, I thoroughly enjoyed the Fiona cork baguette from Jess Rizzuti. And my overall favorite was a satchel-y, structured leather tote with a cotton, eco-accent body and leather tassel from Indigo Blue. I finished the day knowing that cork is an absolute fashion MUST-HAVE moving forward this Spring and Summer, so keep an eye out ladies, for a fab and Earth-friendly cork purchase.
And if you want to vote for the Audience Fan Favorite, you've got until June 6. Click here: www.instyle.com/ihdapoll