//Words: José Berrocoso//

“We are thrilled to celebrate the collaboration of two women from different cultures joining forces to create unique works of art.  We are entrepreneurial designers of the same age, brought up on the opposite sides of the world, Hamda in Abu Dhabi and me in Los Angeles, who built independent, female-owned brands, focusing on craftsmanship, true luxury, and timeless designs”

We love a stylish collaboration and the latest joint venture to come across our radar is between luxury handbag designer Tyler Ellis and Emirati couturier, Hamda Al Fahim.

Tyler Ellis, the daughter of revered fashion designer Perry Ellis, began her eponymous handbag line in 2011, quickly becoming the most carried designer on Hollywood’s red carpets.  Brought to life in a father/son owned and operated atelier in Le Sieci, Italy, Tyler Ellis represents an ardent commitment to couture and quality craftsmanship – a return to true luxury.

Tyler’s designs look equally at home on the red carpet as well as in everyday life and are carried by influential women worldwide.  As a personal homage to Tyler’s father, Perry Ellis’ handwriting appears as the company logo; and most dear to Tyler, he is a part of everything she creates.

She has teamed up with the UAE couturier Hamda Al Fahim to create a limited-edition capsule collection. Hamda’s journey into the world of fashion started at a very young age. She graduated from the College of Art and Science and embarked on her career as an interior designer. But her heart was marching to its own beat. Her sartorial talent expressed itself in her childhood, sketching innovative dress designs and bringing them to life herself at the young age of 12.  Over the years, Hamda has evolved into a fashion designer specializing in glamorous evening wear and bridal couture.

Their limited-edition ‘Love and Romance’ bespoke clutch capsule collection offers a selection of Tyler’s timeless silhouettes adorned with Hamda’s intricately embellished textiles. The fabrics used for each piece are entirely embroidered by hand at Hamda’s atelier in Abu Dhabi and then sent directly to Tyler’s factory in Italy, where the bags are handcrafted to perfection by highly skilled indigenous artisans.

Versatile for all seasons and occasions, the capsule collection features handmade pieces highlighting Tyler’s most popular silhouettes including the signature Lee Pouchet, Perry and Lily Clutches and Meme Pouch, each designed in a variety of rich fabrics and embroidery accents. The Perry in Silver Diamond features a lustrous platinum satin encrusted with radiant crystals, while the Perry in Bee Mine showcases a glistening black satin back, woven with delicate beaded Bumble Bees, adding an extra flutter to any ensemble. The Lily Clutch in Yours Truly personifies Tyler’s lighthearted spirit with a luxurious pink satin decorated with feminine floral embellishments.  The collection also highlights Tyler’s much-loved Lee Pouchet in Everlasting Fantasy, a sleek black satin classic embroidered with a kaleidoscope of sparkling sequins.  And finally, The Meme in Black Diamond showcaseswhimsical ebony feathers – the flawless finishing touch to the pouchesshimmering crystal frame, perfectfor an elegant evening out on the town.

City Pages Magazine: How did the collaboration come about?

Tyler Ellis: I was traveling in the Middle East for work and was introduced to Hamda’s beautiful gowns.  I was immediately drawn to her intricate details and striking silhouettes.  I discovered we were the same age and are both independent entrepreneurs designing amazing luxury gowns and handbags.  We were connected through mutual acquaintances and hit it off instantly.  

CPM: What was the process like creating the collection?

TE: We designed the entire capsule over Zoom, phone calls and emails.  We chose four of my clutches that we felt would best highlight Hamda’s embroideries and went back and forth honing in on the perfect layouts for each of the embellishments on the different silhouettes.  Samples were shipped to back and forth for final tweaks before going into production.  We are currently in the exciting stage of photographing the clutches with Hamda’s collection that they were inspired by.  I can’t wait to see the final images!

CPM: Where did you get the inspiration behind the collaboration?

TE: The collaboration was inspired by our desire to create a limited-edition capsule of genuine couture clutches.  We chose embroideries from Hamda’s ‘Love and Romance’ collection and paired them with a selection of my signature clutches.  The fabric used for the designs are hand embroidered at Hamda’s atelier in Abu Dhabi and then sent to my factory in Le Seici, Italy where each piece is handcrafted by highly skilled local artisans.  

CPM: How do you decide on each season’s designs and collections?

TE: My collections are all named after places that inspire me, so travel plays a large role when creating new designs.  I have not been able to travel because of Covid, so my latest collection, ‘Casino de Monte-Carole’ was inspired by memories I have and hopes of traveling again soon.  Pay attention to Mother Nature and the world around you – inspiration is everywhere!

CPM: What’s your all-time favourite Middle East memory?

TE: My Husband and I came to Dubai for the New Year holiday and stayed at One & Only The Palm – which was spectacular!  On New Years Eve the hotel threw an incredibly elegant dinner party with deliciously decadent food and live music and entertainment that made you want to get up and dance the night away.  We then moved down to the waterfront to Lounge 101, with endless views of Dubai’s skyline to ring in the New Year.  At home, I’m used to a couple minutes of illuminating fireworks to commence the year, but I was in for a something I had never experienced before!  As the clock struck midnight fireworks went off in every direction I turned.  360-degree views of colorful glitter filled the night’s sky, which continued for what seemed to be 15 minutes of magic!  We guzzled tasty champagne, sat back, and watched the memorizing show – a wonderful memory that will stay with my husband and me forever.

CPM: What is in the future for Tyler Ellis and do you have any exciting new launches in the pipeline?

TE: I recently partnered with California based artist, Matthew Rogers, to create a limited-edition capsule of one-of-a-kind bags.  He hand painted his iconic, colorful ‘Palm Trees’ on five of my LJ Handbag silhouettes, which we are debuting at Surface Magazine’s pop-up in Miami for Art Basel.  They are super chic, unique works of art that will bring a smile to your face!

I’m also working with Hamda on another exciting capsule – think wedding bells…please stay tuned!

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