One-on-One with Famed Handbag Designer Lauren Merkin

Classic and timeless. Fun and feminine. Fashionable and functional. These are all qualities that define Lauren Merkin’s brand—a collection of premium handbags that includes her best-selling clutches, which have been spotted on Hollywood A-listers like Angelina Jolie, Kate Beckinsale and Eva Longoria. I recently sat down with Lauren, who created a limited-edition Eve clutch exclusively for blush, to get insight on the trendsetter’s personal aesthetic and the products she can’t live without. Read the full interview below!

What makes you blush?

Flattery or being in the spotlight. I blush pretty easily.

What is your favorite beauty brand and product? What beauty essentials do you always carry around in your purse?

Stila Convertible Eye color in Slate

If I have concealer, cheek tint, mascara, grey eye liner, lip gloss and a mini perfume, then I am pretty much prepared for anything.

How does your personal style match your makeup personality?

I lean pretty classic in both but I tend to have more of a uniform when it comes to makeup. I stick with what works. With clothing, I am willing to take more risks.

What’s your beauty mantra?

My dream is to look like I have naturally flawless skin, long thick lashes and rosy cheeks. And since I definitely don’t, I have to fake it a bit! But I definitely lean towards a natural look.

How important is it for you to match your makeup with the clothes and accessories you’re wearing? What’s your beauty and style process like?

I never really match my makeup with my clothing or accessories. For nights out, I will definitely go for a smokier eye and a slightly more dramatic look, but it’s usually a variation of the same theme.

I am pretty low-key when it comes to my style. I love fashion and clothing and always have an eye out for items I love but I am not particularly strategic about it. I rarely make a purchase for a specific event because I think it’s harder to find items you love when you have a time constraint. I try to have items in my closet so I am prepared when I need a special outfit. Of course, it does not always work out that way and sometimes I find myself scrambling at the last minute!

Where do you find inspiration for the unique designs and patterns in your collections?

Inspiration can strike at any time – a particular leather we fall in love with, an architecture detail seen while traveling, or just a stylish girl on the streets of NYC. Then it is about taking those inspirations and translating them into something that really works for women’s lives. Fashion is mostly about having fun, but handbags in particular need to function well or they become very tedious to use.

What’s your creative process like when designing and does it have any similarities with your style and beauty methods?

When designing I usually need to understand the functionality first and then can move on to the decorative. I love fashion but in my opinion it should be functional and comfortable while being beautiful.

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