Cheap & Chic! {Interview with Elsa from "Elsa Handmade Inspirations"}

Today, instead of the usual “Cheap & Chic” column I have the honor to present you a very talented lady. Her name is Elsa and she creates beautiful handbags from scratch! Needless to say they are both chic & cheap. Elsa is a genuine personality with flowering creativity and I’m certain that you‘ll find her designs inspiring the way I did! Elsa and I had a little chat the other day about her work, the styles she prefers and her design ethos. Let’s find out what she said, shall we?

Sophia: Elsa, how did you come to design handbags?
Elsa: I have a vast background in fashion originally. I’ve spent several years designing clothes for my own little firm which was very daunting but at the same time taught me valuable lessons on how a business is run.

Sophia: And you make mostly handbags?
Elsa: Yes! It’s a fashion item I like the most as it’s quite versatile and not as heavy on somebody’s shoulders as creating a clothes’ line, but equally rewarding nonetheless! Plus I believe in the power of accessorizing and handbag is definitely a key piece for everyone!

Sophia: Your designs are all lovely and well made. You make everything by hand?
Elsa: Yes, I have total control over production and since I make only a small batch at a time I can still manage all stages of production including sketching, cutting, sewing and assembling.

Sophia: What are the materials you prefer to use?
Elsa: To tell you the truth inspiration is what defines my use of materials. When I envision a new bag then I see what kind of materials I would like this very bag to be made of!

Sophia: So, where do you find inspiration?
Elsa: Everywhere! It sounds like a cliché but it’s true. I have a vast collection of things that boosts my creativity. I simply like to accumulate stuff. Materials are very important to me. I have tons of leathers, fabrics, buttons, ribbons you name it! Also being in the fashion department I’m always aware of new trends and depending on the season I’m influenced by them. For instance, this season velvet and fur are big so I’ll find ways to incorporate them into my collection.

Sophia: Is there a type of bag you prefer to make over and over again?
Elsa: Surely I make everything from casual to formal, but my all-time favorite is the evening purse.

Sophia: Can you define your style?
Elsa: My mood swings and my style too! Though, I gravitate towards modern but tailored with a touch of vintage and sometimes eclectism.  

Sophia: Name your favorite celebrity designer?
Elsa: The one and only Gaultier.

Sophia: Where we can find you and your bags?
Elsa: At the moment through my blog, and email which is esklavou@gmail.com.

Elsa, it was a pleasure to talk with you and share your creativitiy here. Thank you very much! 

(all images show Elsa's new collection for A/w 11)