A few years after launching its footwear line in 2008, Pour La Victoire expanded their collection, adding luxe handbags. Much like their progressive shoe designs, the bags embodied a mix of Parisian-inspired elegance and hard-edged, modern style. Shopbop chatted with their handbag design director, Dana Baggett, about the fall collection, her latest obsessions, and her unique start in fashion.
SHOPBOP: When did you know you wanted to design?
DANA BAGGETT: Choosing design as a career was more of an organic process for me. I went to school for business and was hired as a regional manager for a technology firm. It was a different world! I lasted for about seven months and realized that no matter how lucrative the job was, it would never be enough. A week later, I quit and moved to California to attend FIDM. I basically started over; best decision I ever made.
SB: What drew you to creating handbags?
DB: I have always had a love for bags. I realized it was more of an obsession the day I forwent all necessities of life, and basically spent every dime I had on my first Marc by Marc Jacobs! I will always be a lover of bags.
SB: Which of your handbags does every woman need on her arm?
DB: My favorite bag right now is the Pour La Victoire Jules satchel. It's that perfect balance between luxe and casual. I love the double shoulder straps. They give the conventional, multifunctional day bag a timeless and unexpected ’60s vibe. Super obsessed!
SB: Your bags always have a strong Parisian feel, but was there something specific that influenced the latest collection?
DB: I try to design each collection with a certain amount of ease. It should never look or feel as if it’s trying too hard. This past collection was unique in that the bags were a little more structured and ladylike. It seemed almost contrary to the effortlessness I try for each season. My most important thought then, was balance. For example with our Adelle shoulder bag. I combined the idea of a casual multi-functional everyday bag with a luxe snake chain. It’s more interesting to design with opposites in mind.
SB: If you could peek inside any woman’s purse, historical or current, who would it be and why?
DB: This would have to be my very first design director, Lubov Azria. She was (and still is) an absolute powerhouse! Working with her, she somehow managed to always look "perfect" while being a wife, mother, and director of the multimillion dollar fashion house BCBGMAXAZRIA. There have to be some secrets inside her bag!