NEW YORK CITY, June 16 – South African designer Adrian Furstenburg has triumphed at the 10th annual Independent Handbag Designer Awards™ in the US, walking away with one of the show’s coveted awards.
Furstenburg won in the All About the Logo by Guess Handbags category. He will now be collaborating with the Guess handbag design team using his winning bag as inspiration.
Forty finalists were in the running, selected from more than 1 500 submissions sent from five continents and 28 countries.
The brainchild of handbag designer turned curator, Emily Blumenthal, the Handbag Awards (www.thehandbagawards.com) provide emerging designers access to business and brand-bolstering prizes.
Furstenburg, who has worked in both London and Paris, has a diploma in textile design and launched his own handbag range in 2009. He is currently working on his first retail collection which will be launched in South Africa later this year.
He explains he inspiration for his winning creation: “I used the shape of the logo which inspired the triangular stripe detail in the all American red and blue stripes on the bag. The vibe is not exactly nautical but it does have a typically ’90s or even ’70s retro element to it. Imagine someone like Claudia Schiffer with a bag like this taking a trip on a speedboat with her lover in Miami lakes. I love building narrative around what I do – it’s the stylist in me!”
Every year, hundreds of aspiring designers from around the globe submit applications in the hopes of becoming a finalist. Judges include some of the industry’s biggest names such as Kenneth Cole; design director of Guess Handbags Suesan Faulkner and Rebecca Minkoff (who was the 2015 recipient of the Iconoclast award), among others.
All winners will receive a yearlong membership to the Accessories Council. The awards took place at the SVA Theatre in New York City.
NOTES FOR EDITORS
ABOUT THE INDEPENDENT HANDBAG DESIGNER AWARDS
Founded in 2007, the Independent Handbag Designer Awards by Handbag Designer 101 was created to celebrate handbag design and creativity from the United States and around the world. Now in its tenth year, it is an industry staple and is the only international design competition to discover, recognise and create brand awareness for independent handbag designers.
The IHDA Sponsors are InStyle, EVINE Live, Guess, Signal Brands, Trina Turk, BERNINA,
Mary Kay Cosmetics, Basic Adhesives, Lug Life, Accessorie Circuit, Pantone, The Accessories Council, Hilldun, The Fashion Class, The NPD Group, Garment Centre Alliance, Save the Garment Centre, Bottomless Closet, The Accessory Think Tank, Gild Hall Thompson Hotel, WIX, The Tassen Museum of Bags and Purses, Leather Suede Skins, and M&J Trimming.