It goes without saying that we love a designer collaboration. And Debenhams have long been keeping us happy with their high-end partnerships, with some of our favourite designers from the likes of Jonathan Saunders, to Preen and Henry Holland.
Last year, Todd Lynn joined forces with the high street hot spot and has now added a 12-piece collection of covetable handbags to his range, even bagging (sorry) Leah Weller as the campaign star. Amazing! From classic totes to oversized backpacks, these beauties are all made from the softest leather, and will give you a slice of designer arm candy at high street prices, with a cross-body tote with stitching detail coming in at only £75.
We caught up with the Canadian-born designer to find out just what makes a good handbag, and who he’d love to see carrying his new creations…
The bags all look amazing- what made you want to add a handbag range to your collection?
When I think of a bag I imagine most women carry everything in it, and you need to have the places to put it. You want a bag that you can take to the office and then take out with you in the evening. That’s what these bags will do- they’re functional in that way.
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What do you think people will like most about these pieces?
They’re all leather. These bags are going to look better the longer you have them. I was insistent on leather and that the insides had as much stuff as possible… you’ve got keyrings, you’ve got card holders and pockets. It had to have all of that stuff because different people buy bags differently.
You’re so influenced by music and rock and roll in your work, how did you work that into your bags?
When I think about these bags, I think about the people that I like and the women I admire in the music industry. And my friends- I think what they would want to carry and what I would want to see them carrying. In these bags I can see those characters.
Who are those women?
The people that I’m close to like Shirley Manson and Courtney Love. Courtney would definitely carry one of these bags. Those types of women who have a good sense of style and really want to look good, and that fits into their world. That’s why I like female rock stars more than anyone. I think the rock star women, we look at them on the street and we see them. We can see their personality. That’s the way they dress, it’s the way they are all the time. I like that the product is real and feels relevant. Even when I’m designing clothes, I want them to be clothes that people can put in their life and wear all the time.
What do you love about London and the fashion scene in the UK?
I love that everyone is included in fashion here- you can participate in fashion at every price point. It feels like everyone is taken care of- the UK fashion scene doesn’t exclude anybody. There’s no reason why people who shop on the high street shouldn’t have a good bag. I think this collection proves that you can get a great product at a really accessible price.
What do you think would be the main ingredients of the perfect bag?
It needs to have a function, it needs to have quality and it needs to be stylish. It needs to tick all three of those boxes because if it doesn’t, something’s wrong.
What drew you to Leah to model the collection?
She has a musical connection, which I think was the thing that drew me to working with her. Also, I wanted people to relate to the images of Leah. I want people to understand and be able to see themselves in the images.
Do you have a favourite piece?
I do love the black bag with ponyskin. I love that it has the texture and also the stitching which gives it a motorcycle aspect. I also really love the red hobo bag.
Check out our top 3 bags below, which go on sale today. Luxury totes at purse-friendly prices? It would be rude not to indulge…
By Hannah Banks-Walker