Words/Images Judith Ecochard
Holloway Hobo (front)
Well, from somewhat Grandma elderly overtones to attitude bags with some vibrant sass---what a difference a collection makes.
We could see it the minute we walked into the RADLEY London Editor's preview of SPRING 2011 carry-alls and accessories...from this enormously popular, from across the sea- label.
Vintage -inspired does not mean grannyish but can be sleek and on trend (even if the Olsens and other petite in the news types can pull off the literal old school, on occasion).
Here we felt Radley wisely injected a contemporary youthful spirit to the brand...
...while maintaining the highest quality. In particular the thick buttery leather used throughout much of the line---unique to Radley btw...is soft and luxe, the hardwear solid, the trims high-end.
What is new and very 2011--- the creamy neutrals and bright pop colors,
A terrific mix of textures/materials including canvas, linen, denim and recycled materials...
Judicious use of hardware---antique brass grommets, fringe trimmings...
Craftsmanship---the innovative stitch work that adds eye appeal, basket weave twisted/woven and patchwork elements.
Exceptional small things--that make a gal want to buy this tote, holdall, hobo--- over another brand.
Modern interpretations of the classic bestselling Grosvenor -are available in various styles and sizes.... ...including the popular again, iconic cross body design. We think YES---we can text now and haul.
Finchley Small Crossbody
And in the small leathers, frame bags that close shut with a satisfying click.
...and cute accessories, sturdy beach canvas totes.
Our top pick as a major palette pleaser---Ivory---a color that really does work with most anything one could wear. And endive, a soothing greenish pale shade---is so SPRING...we can see it adding sparkle to the uniform tees, denims, LBD...
Earlsfield Small Crossbody
PLUS: Linings that every gal we know really appreciates.
MEGA FUN, whimsical and practical accessories including our favorite umbrellas---a natural fit for an English brand.
And yes, the adorable dog stands pat but is often on a tag, not the tag...
We think theis collection is a real breakthrough towards international tastes ---including Americans who always want a quality bag---a staple that is contemporary but one for the women, not the girls.