Bury St Edmunds-based handbag designer Mary Jardine secures Fenwick trial in Colchester
- Credit: Archant
An East Anglian company which has made handbags for stars including Emma Watson and Keira Knightley is hoping to get its brand into leading retail chains.
Jardine of London, which is based in Bury St Edmunds, has secured a trial placing for a selection of its bags in department store chain Fenwick’s newly refurbished Williams & Griffin outlet in Colchester.
“We are hoping they will roll out our brand in the rest of the Fenwick stores,” said founder Mary Jardine, who launched the business in 2014.
“We are approaching other stores such as John Lewis and Selfridges at the moment also.”
And she believes there are “exciting times ahead as I jostle for position next to Mulberry, Aspinal of London, Vivienne Westwood, etc.”
Mary, who designs the bags herself, said she had the “light bulb moment” to create a high-end luxury British handbag business as she approached her 50th birthday.
Her bags are British-made and do not feature the overt “designer” branding of other up-market labels.
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“Obvious branding has long appeared on many of the designer handbag brands. For years I have admired these beautiful designs, but along with many other women, this overt branding repeatedly turns me away,” she said.
“We are disrupting the market by offering a luxury handbag brand that does not put overt branding on the outside of the bag.
“I created Jardine of London to appeal to women who would love to own a classic and timeless handbag without feeling that they are wearing a banner pointing an arrow at the branding on the outside of their bag.”
She added: “With manufacturing in the UK declining in the fashion world, I felt the need to support British manufacturing. To that end, I felt determined to have my handbags all handcrafted in Britain.
“I am proud to have a selection of my bags trialled in one of the Fenwick stores, a truly British department store.”