Vaalbara's Haute Harmony
For bohemian women, walking the line between dressing like a hippie and staying chic is difficult. That's why it's inspiring to find companies such as Vaalbara (vaalbaradesigns.com), a SoCal-based accessories house that finds haute harmony between earthy patterns and structured silhouettes. Vaalbara's founder, Emily Prescott, designs and constructs her line of bags, clutches and jewelry from her Venice Beach studio, but her wares can be found at Isla Boutique in Laguna Beach; Prism Boutique in Long Beach; Laurenly in the Orange Circle; and Villa Pilates, San Lorenzo and Juxtaposition Studio in Newport Beach.
Prescott's job is one that all millennials would envy. A portion of her work requires traveling around the world and visiting Los Angeles' garment district on a regular basis to source new and beautiful textiles. She favors native prints such as ikat, a choice that someone somewhere is rolling their eyes at. Pieces run from $35 to $200. That price range, being locally made, plus the fact that a portion of every sale is donated to the Surfrider Foundation make Vaalbara a company we're A-okay with. Here are some of my favorites:
FOLD CLUTCH. This clutch is delicious. Made of either supple leather or calf hide (eep, sorry, animal activists!), this sexy purse is closed with a skinny, wrap-around leather strap.
TEXAS GRAY WEEKENDER. All the awesomeness that you get from a Baja Bag, but fancy enough to take to Fascist Island and not be noticed.
NAVAJO ENVELOPE. Oh balls, someone made something original. Beautiful teal contrasts with warm, brown leather. While it appears to be a clutch, it's actually a laptop case!
Get the Arts & Culture Newsletter
Find out about upcoming performances, exhibitions, openings and special events happening in the Orange County art and theater scene.