A few years ago, 2007 to be exact my father comes into my office and plunks a bag down on my desk. This was no ordinary bag, it was vintage Botkier! As it turns out, my grandfather Misha (Michael in Russian) had been a handbag manufacturer in Russia more than 50 years ago…
Rosa and Misha Botkier pictured below
Botkier was born in 2003 and grew organically as I had developed an absolute love affair with hand bags that bordered on an obsession…I guess one can see now that this natural gravitation to all things leather but purses in particular was actually in the blood.
The fact that my father didn’t tell me this before doesn’t surprise me as we see him as an absentminded professor of sorts and made the coincidence that much sweeter.
Going through the archives of old family photos while the only surviving bag made by my grandfather Misha hung on the wall of my office gave me all the inspiration I needed. To create is to live. The experience made me feel close to him again. I missed him.
To add to the romance I was already feeling, the bag in question was made for my grandmother specifically. Such a beautiful and crafted piece with an amazing metal frame. Elegant with an edge, everything Botkier is today. So for Fall 2011 we launch the Misha Collection, Botkier’s very own heritage statement with a clutch, shoulder, satchel and even backpack!
My grandmother Rosa Botkier recently celebrated her 88th birthday and when I presented her with a Misha shoulder bag – the same that I have been addicted to wearing for the past month – we all wept. It was a really proud and profound moment.
The original bag below…
S is for Style, a Fashion Diary…
Dear Diary, so today my DD (dear daughter for those not familiar with mommy blog lingo) whipped together an outfit that had me thinking, this kid has some spirit. Completely inspired I thought let’s document these as I wish my mother might have done and create an archive of the ultimate in independent thought and creativity – kid fashion! Hungarian peasant blouse, Gap jeans, moccasins above. Various J.Crew pieces below.
We can see where it all started. Beloved ‘Blankie’ had been turned into a Mad Max type ensemble a few years back. The transformation made us all proud. Stay tuned for more inspired looks from Casa Botkier.
With our latest collaboration, we are excited to bring the power of design to our biggest fans. Who better to consult than our favorite bag enthusiasts behind the much obsessed over Purse Blog? Teaming up with Megs and Vlad for the Purse Blog design project has been a dream-there is no place more passionate about handbags on the web. What’s most inspiring for us is being able to get direct feedback from Purse Blog’s cherished family-some of our favorite Botkier girls are Purse Blog readers!
The first phase of the Botkier + Purse Blog design gave the readers a chance to vote on the most intimate design details. Thanks to the efforts of thousands of voters, we’ve decided the style of bag, color, and type of hardware. We’ll be welcoming back the Sasha, in a distressed grey with gunmetal hardware. Now, it’s up to you to vote on the finishing touches-will the final Sasha sport a fanciful fringe? Or will it boast braided detailing? The choice is yours-visit Purse Blog’s newest post to contribute your ideas!
See the details behind Phase I of the design project here, and be sure to check out the exclusive Purse Blog video interview with Monica on the project (plus a Spring 10 preview!) here.