Winners of Independent Handbag Designer Awards

May2009InvitespreadHandbag Designer 101, announced the winners of the third annual Independent Handbag Designer Awards which were held on June 17th, at the New York Historical Society. The Independent Handbag Designer Awards provides an opportunity for handbag designers to break into the competitive accessory industry. Designers of the most creative handbags competed against one another with 7 awards given for Handbag Design Excellence, and for the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to show their work among their peers in New York City, with over 400 members of the fashion industry, including press and retailers in attendance.

The award winners are:

Best Student Made Handbag – Rachel Esswood for Rachel Esswood (

Best Handmade Handbag – Alexis Campagna for Antebellum

HBD101 s Audience Fan Favorite – Adriana Castro for Adriana Castro (

Best Green Handbag -Andres Stickney for DRES (

Most Socially Responsible Handbag – Cherry Kwunyeun for Blumpari (

Best Use of Swarovski Crystallized Elements – Lorna Nixon for Lorna Nixon

Best Shoe in Overall Style and Design – Raphael Young for Raphael (

Young Best Handbag in Overall Style and Design – Alice Tapajos for Zibba

Lulu Guinness received the ICONOCLAST Award in Handbag Design Lulu Guinness, who originally launched her company in 1989, and is famous for her whimsical handbags and accessories. For more information on the IHDA winners, visit

In addition to the title in their respective categories, the winners received a variety of prizes such as having their line carried at Saks Fifth Avenue (Best Handbag in Overall Style and Design), create a limited edition shoe with Sam Edelman and Foot Petals (Best Shoe in Overall Style and Design), in addition to a booth at WWDMAGIC; marketing press tour and feature with Swarovski (Best Use of CRYSTALLIZEDTM – Swarovski Elements), an apprenticeship with Devi Kroell (Best Student Made Handbag); a chance to create a pattern and a feature on Singer Sewing Company’s website (Best Handmade Handbag), create a limited edition eco-bag with Korres Natural Products (Best Green Handbag), a feature on World of by eBay (Most Socially Responsible Handbag), and a feature on Handbag Designer 101 for the Audience Fan Favorite

A Judging Panel consisting of Famed Handbag Designer and 2007 IHDA Lifetime Achievement Recipient of 2007, Carlos Falchi, Lisa Smilor (Associate Director for the Council of Fashion Designers of America: CFDA), Lincoln Moore, (SVP DMM, Accessories, Saks Fifth Avenue), Sam Edelman (CEO of Sam Edelman), Stephan Toljan, (CCB Vice President Market Management of Swarovski), Devi Kroell (CEO & CCO for Devi Kroell), Taylor Tomasi (Accessories Director, Teen Vogue), Christina Polychroni, (Director of Marketing for Korres Natural Products), Katie Boertman (Trade Marketing Manager for Singer Sewing Company), Tina Aldatz (President of Foot Petals), Meghan Cleary (Miss Meghan: America’s Shoe Expert) and Julia Poteat (Assistant Professor of Fashion Methods for Parsons The New School for Design) were responsible for selecting these “Top Handbag and Shoe Design” from each respective category.

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