Anya Hindmarch

Anya Hindmarch

Designer, Anya Hindmarch

The accessories designer has won a loyal following for her humorous and classically British handbags, inspired by architecture.

United Kingdom Designers 2013 BoF 500 2013 2014 BoF 500 2014

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The accessories designer has won a loyal following for her humorous and classically British handbags, inspired by architecture.

Anya Hindmarch's live mosaic

    • 24 October, 11:00
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      • 22 October, 16:23
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      • 15 October, 13:43
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      • 11 October, 17:23
      • 11 October, 10:57
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      • 7 October, 17:51
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Biography

Following a talk given by someone who left school and worked in brand management, Hindmarch told The Daily Telegraph, “I went back to my desk and drew a shop with bags in it, and my name on the front, and it was very clear to me.”

At 18, she went to Florence to study Italian and learn more about the trade that she had envisaged for herself. Noticing that a drawstring leather duffel bag was all the rage among fashionable women, Hindmarch borrowed £1,000 to import some bags to England. After sending it to fashion magazine Harpers and Queen, she sold 500 bags after the magazine wrote about them. She invested the £7,000 in profit she made into her fledgling business.

Hindmarch told The Daily Telegraph, “Between 1987 and 1993 I was on my own, at my kitchen table, which was quite tough. I was living with a friend in London, just off the Fulham Road, and it was hard to crack it. I see a lot of people at the same stage now, and a lot of businesses are lost at that stage. Then the Italian factory that I was using started to copy my designs, and sell them to Harvey Nichols. And it was hard to get the quantities right at the beginning – 50 of this, 50 of that – so I ended up moving the production back to the UK, and began to work with a lot of craftsmen, some of whom we still work with.”

Today, Hindmarch designs three collections a year, with products spanning handbags, shoes, luggage, leather accessories and beachwear. They are all imbued with a potent and unique mix of humour and elegance; Alexandra Shulman, the editor-in-chief of British Vogue, says, "The brand inspires loyalty because people have a very clear idea of it and they identify with Anya the person." One of Hindmarch’s greatest successes was her ‘I am not a plastic bag' shopping bag, for which thousands of people queued up around the world.

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