Copyright (c) 2014 Dawn Statham-Lowe
Mulberry was founded in 1971 by a 21 year old, Roger Saul. With a £500 loan and the help of his mother Joan, he started the business in the garage of their home in Chicompton, near Bath. They opened their first factory, The Rookery, in 1973 in Somerset, England. The collection was small, initially with leather poacher bags, binocular bags and dispatch bags but they soon became known for their British lifestyle brand.
The leather goods were made at the original factory in Somerset. That range has now extended into clothing for both men and women and footwear, with stores throughout the UK and all over the world from the USA to the Far East. As quantities increased, production of some items has moved abroad and it was stated in 2003 by company director Ian Scott, that many of the men's bags are made in Turkey and small leather goods and luggage are made in China.
The appointment of designer Emma Hill in 2007 is credited with turning the company from a classic British lifestyle leather good maker into an international fashion powerhouse. Hill created the iconic 'It Bag' the Alexa Chung, a must for any fashion conscious woman. Unfortunately in June 2013 it was announce that Hill was parting company with Mulberry due to creative differences and in the wake of this the company share prices fell then it was hit by the global credit crisis too.
Today the company's headquarters remain in Somerset and the latest muse to have a bag created after her is Cara Delevingne. In February 2014 a Tweet revealed a teaser of pictures with coming soon along side a Made In England tattoo on the sole of her foot. This collaboration was top secret, with Cara being taken in and out of Mulberry offices in blacked out cars and anyone involved in the process having to sign non-disclousure agreements, even the caterers. Looking back, there had been hints. In June last year when Cara was asked what her favourite Mulberry bag was and she replied the Cara bag, actually it has not been made yet.
A short video has been made to celebrate this, following Cara traveling from London to the flagship factory and being involved with the design. We even see her sitting at a sewing machine. The resulting Cara range includes a 3 in 1 style backpack, in mini, medium and large. Cara wanted each bag to be like opening a letter and discovering a special surprise. There is also a lion rivet and a heart shaped patch based on her tattoo as well as 'Made In England' engraved on the bottom of each bag. The Cara backpack has been seen constantly on her shoulders and her pet bunny Cecil has appeared on instagram tucked into her bag.
General release is this August and there is a growing waiting list. Although Rihanna has been spotted with a calf hair camouflage backpack especially customized for her. RiRi is engraved inside and it is tinted in hues of purple, her favourite colour.
Where a handbag is made is important so do look for its origin as it is all about quality, quality, quality. Italian handbags are well known for their quality, luxurious design and style and will have tags to confirm and guarantee it's authenticity.
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At Attavanti we love to promote the 'Made in Italy' brand. For the very best in Italian leather designer handbags, shoulder bags, leather holdalls, wallets and purses take a look around our store at www.attavanti.com
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