There is something magical about bringing Black excellence to something as simple as a handbag. So today, I want to focus on Black handbag designers! The stories behind why many Black designers and creatives start are usually based on changing the industry, paving the way, bringing their history to the forefront, and sending a helping hand to other contemporaries.
The handbag you choose says everything about you and your personality. Do you only carry your credit card and lipgloss? Do you need a bag to carry your laptop, journal, pens, makeup bag, literally everything?
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Are you a simple clutch carrier? Do you prefer vegan-friendly, leather, cloth, or animal print?
Handbag shopping is similar to finding the perfect pair of shoes. You’re looking for quality, style, longevity, and an item that captures your personality. We need several different bags at different price points, styles, colors, sizes, prints, and fabrications. If anyone understands, it’s me. A woman needs options, am I right?!?
It’s Black history month, and this is the perfect time to support black handbag designers and creators. What stood out to me about these amazing Black designers is their goal of working directly with educated artisans, working with people from their home towns, and bringing money back to their country.
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How beautiful is that? The intricate details that go into handbag designing are awe-inspiring. It takes a remarkable eye and delicate understanding of fabric and hardware.
Why support a Black-owned brand?
- Visibility and representation in the green economy
- Strengths local economy
- Closes the racial wage gap
- Fosters job creations
- Holds other companies accountable
- Creates Black culture and serves communities
Read here to further understand the importance of supporting Black-owned businesses.
Let’s Deep Dive Into Some Black Handbag Designers & Brands You Need To Know
Telfar Large Red Shopping Bag
Telfar is the name that comes out of everyone's mouth when talking about luxury Black-owned handbag designers.
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The wait for one of these vegan bags is craziness! They are hard to get and must have.
Telfar has been established in 2006 and doesn't only sell bags. There are t-shirts, hats, belts, jewelry, and shoes. He (Telfar Clemens) has recently collaborated with Uggs and White Castle.
AAKS Hawa Sini Dot Handbag
Akosua Afriyie-Kumi founded AAKS in 2016 to introduce the world to her favorite weaving techniques done by the women of Ghana while also creating and igniting sustainable jobs within Africa.
All bags are unique, well crafted, and made with amazing quality if you are looking for a bag that stands out and has its own personality.
Brandon Blackwood Arlen Suede Bag
Brandon Blackwood designs handbags for everyone. The silhouette is sleek, clean, and with strong, loud statements. Like the statement "End Systematic Racism" his bags are timeless.
Anima Iris Black & White Zaza Bag
Handbags in the Anima Iris collection are carefully handcrafted by professionals with centuries of passed-down knowledge.
The designer Wiglory is Cameroonian-born and was inspired by her mother's fashion sense of bright color and bold shapes.
Brother Vellies Springbok Billfold Red Bag
"Brother Vellies was founded in 2013 with the goal of keeping traditional African design practices and techniques alive while also creating and sustaining artisanal jobs."
Creative Director and Founder Aurora James started with a powerful fashion resume before she started her brand.
They also sell shoes that have been seen on celebrities Solange Knowles and Elaine Welteroth to name a few.
Agnes Baddoo Natural Bag
Agnes Baddoo leather goods are handcrafted in Los Angeles. The focus on these handbags is timeless fashion and everyday usage.
Mateo Emerald Cognac Embossed Croc
Matthew Harris was born in Jamaica, the son of a seamstress. While being self-taught he fell in love with the craft of making jewelry. Mateo launched in 2009, which focus was men's jewelry.
However, in 2014, he moved his focus to a women's fine jewelry collection that was launched. The inspiration is the modern woman. The handbags are handcrafted with genuine leather and metals.
Kintu New York Embroidery Lady Handbag
Kintu handbags are designed in New York and made in Italy. The brand was created in 2014 with the core value of generational conversations in craftsmanship and artistry.
The craftsmanship of Italian leather makers Kintu bags is consciously crafted from strong and hard-wearing 100% natural vegetable tanned leather sourced from the best European tanneries.
The result is high quality, minimalist, vibrant bags that are beautiful, practical and capture each customer’s unique personality.
Love, Cortnie Mongolian Fur & Leather Mini Bag
Cortnie first learned how to sew from her grandmother, it took her only 3 hours to sew her first clutch bag. She caught the sewing bug and from there she started sewing everything you could imagine.
She started as an Esty seller and now her brand offers a range of amazingly fun handbags. Spice up your handbag collection with fun silhouettes, bold prints, and colors.
Ana Midi Bag — Haiti Design Co
Haiti Design was created in 2014 with the goal to create sustainable development through fashion. They have a partnership with many artisans crafting, including leather, sewing, and jewelry making, to name a few.
Haiti isn't just a leather goods company; they sell jewelry, apparel, and home goods.
Joanne Vanderpuije New Wave Envelope Clutch
Joanne is a London based designer and has some major accolades under her belt.
She launched her brand in 2017 with a wide range of fun, colorful vegan handbags. The beauty is her hand-painted or printed fabrics.
HeleJané Boujie Fuchsia Handbag
Nigerian born designer Dolapo Deji-Torey crafts beautifully timeless handbags. The style of minimalism with a hint of a classic can be worn with every ouftit.
Tips for shopping with any indie brand:
- Read the reviews section with a fine-tooth comb.
- Social media such as Twitter is an amazing place to read about in ins and out of a brand, customer service, and how well the product handles wear and tear.
- If you are still unsure about purhcase send an email to the company or use the chat on the website.
Let’s chat: Ok, y’all let’s be honest, how many bags do you own? Do you see yourself purchasing from any of these Black handbag designers? What bags did you love the most?
Beautiful! I’ll check these out. One of my favorites is Artwear By Robbie.
You definitely missed a major company when you missed Orijin Culture – they make beautiful leather bags and accessories Art!
I still don’t get the hoopla over Telfar bags they’re horribly made, look and feel cheap and I sent mine back as soon as I purchased it- I see folks with them and instantly think they’re doing it for the ‘gram
These are good black handbag for design brand.
Although there are some great bags up above, the Bagwell Collection is a new line that must be checked out as well. Their debut collection the Bagwell Satchel is absolutely stunning.