By Rochelle Karina
Their website says, No matter where your day takes you, Ellen Allen Annapolis handbags help you get there with style and efficiency. For the woman who doesnt want to carry just any old purse, these bags offer a splash of colorful flair.
I joke that a lot of things seem like a good idea at the time, laughed Ellen Allen when asked how she got the inspiration to start her business. The whole story, however, is that Allen found a bag that was absolutely fabulous but wasnt all that attractive. A friend took one look at it and asked the interior designer if she didnt think it would be perfect with an awning stripe. I didnt sleep after that, exclaimed Allen.
Taking her inspiration from the area around her, Allen focuses on architecturally inspired nautical themes. The colors are bright, the patterns are bold. Allen took one look around downtown Annapolis and started thinking.
Annapolis is coastal town, USA, she said, Its the greatest town ever. I looked around downtown, and it all clicked. Allen spent the summer considering where things would go, what would come next, then in July 2009, her handbags shipped.
The bags are constructed with TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane), essentially a coated canvas, providing a durable and water-resistant surface that is also biodegradable and environmentally friendly.
It was very important for our company to be eco-friendly, explained Allen, who boasts the bags are PVC (polyvinyl chloride) free. PVC, aside from being far worse for the environment than TPU, is also not as durable.
You cant have a brand with a Chesapeake Collection and not be respectful of our environment, admitted Allen, a mother of two and an interior designer with a history in retail who truly understands her target audience.
Her vision is one of family, graceful living and balance. The designs are a twist on the classics, a little more geometric thanks to the architectural inspirations, and a lot bolder, more sophisticated and totally self-assured. They mix preppy and casual in a style that goes from beach to boardroom.
From the petite Club Case, perfect for sunglasses or cosmetics, to the cavernous Eastport carry all, the line includes wallets, purses and totes named after iconic locations around Annapolis. The colors come with evocative names like Calvert Green, Gloucester Yellow and Steele Navy.
Allen also offers a line of coordinating silk charmeuse scarves as bold and colorful as the bags, each inspired by elements around Annapolis. Ellen Allen Annapolis handbags and scarves may be purchased online or at select retailers.
Its been the sum of all my passions, said Allen, This has been an education all the way around.