Blanca Lesser doesn't have to look far when it comes to finding inspiration for her handbag collection, Olivia+Joy.
From the sheets on her bed to a picture frame to a pair of shoes, Lesser -- who serves as the creative director and brand manager -- is always coming up with new designs for her handbag line geared to women who want the look for less. The line has already gotten the attention of some fashion-forward stars, including Kim Kardashian and Kristin Cavallari. Check out photos from the line below:
“I have the inside scoop,” Lesser told TooFab. “I know there is a big void out there for great looking handbags that people just feel good about wearing because I was the buyer and because I'm a girl and I'm obsessed with bags.”
Lesser worked for Macy's as a handbag buyer for five years before she lost her job due to the recession. However, it led to the creation of her line of affordable handbags, which launched in 2010.
“There's something for the very casual girl, the girl who is looking for something structured for work and something for the girl that wants a clutch to go out,” Lesser said. “There's something new every month for everyone.”
The handbags, which are all priced under $100, come in a variety of styles and colors. There is the Crossfire, a nylon satchel, which Lesser describes as the perfect work bag, and Tycoon, a handbag with a double chain strap that has been seen on Kim Kardashian and Carmen Electra. This is also Lesser's favorite piece from the collection.
“It's very classy and I swear if I didn't know better I can see it under glass in a Barneys,” Lesser said. “It comes in an emerald green, and it's very simple and sophisticated, but it has a lot of zing.”
Named after the four-year-old twin daughters of Abe Dweck, the owner of Accessories Exchange who helped Lesser launch the brand, Olivia+Joy handbags are functional and fashionable. With zippers and compartments inside and outside, Lesser's handbags go beyond just being eye candy.
For the upcoming fall collection, fans of Olivia+Joy can expect python and Navajo- inspired prints, along with faux furs and red as the go-to color.
“There is an incredible amount of detail that goes into [Olivia+Joy handbags],” said Lesser, who follows the creative process from beginning to end. “At the end of the day it says Olivia+Joy on them, but it might as well say my name because the buyers know where to call.”
As for expanding Olivia+Joy to encompass more than just handbags, Lesser believes it is only a matter of time.
“It's a natural progression,” Lesser said, “and I'm sure that we will get there very soon.”