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Bentley's Exclusive Handbags


Bentley's Head of Product Design is standing in front of us talking about what women want!

''Women do love our cars. Around 18 months ago, we realized through actually watching people bespoking their cars, we realized the car is predominantly a male product, but Bentley by a far lead is also a female product,'' explained Daniele Ceccomori, the aforementioned design head.

Wearing a striped red shirt embroided with red cars, Ceccomori is instantly likable. He speaks with an Italian  accent, gesturing as he talks.
''We thought: how about developing something  for female taste? So we came out with the idea of a handbag. We can extrapolate all of these ingredients that we explore with the interiors of the car. They're so relevant to a woman's taste.''  

The result was the lunch of two handbags drawing on Bentley's heritage: the horseshoe - shaped Continental, named after Diana Barnato, the stunning daughter of former Bentley chairman Woolf Barnato.

 Ceccomori points to one of several handbags (two styles, numerous colour combinations) scattered around the room, indicating the bags 'flourishes of metal'. These, he explains, are 'like a jewellry'. Then there's the material, ''the details of the stitching, the accuracy of colours,'' the ability to select from some of Bentley's bolder shades, all of its reflects elements of the Bentley car. Even the stitching technique.
 ''Each handle basically takes three hours'', explains Ceccomori. As on the steering wheels, the holes are marked by using the prongs of a fork and precise manual movements, followed by threading, lacing, tightenings and closing. 'It's a very laborious process.''

 We pick a Barnato bag up. Beautifully coloured with light silver accents, weighty enough to make an impression but not so heavy as to be cumbersome, the justification is easy to see. The products exude sumptuous luxury.

''When you step into the interior of the car, you have an experience that basically involves all of the senses.
Touch, smell...it's almost an architectural space, but drawn to a much smaller scale than a house. I embraced the challenge of trying to convey the same values we have with cars into products''.


 Ceccomori opens one of the bags. A light camel on the exterior, the bag parts to reveal vividly red quilted leather, a more luxurious material than the synthetic lining usually used in the industry. The unexpected shade is faintly reminiscent of the shock of crimson that flicks from a Louboutin shoe. As far as an accessory can surprise, this one does. ''As you open it, you're effectively opening the door of the car,'' Ceccomori says, before adding that around 80percent of developing the bag went into the interior.

 The bags are also practical, says Ceccomori, indicating numerous interior compartments. The Barnato offers a rectangular vanity mirror embossed with Bentley wings. 
The Continental has a leather makeup pouch with waterproof lining. Both have multiple compartments.

''This is here the meaning of performance sits. The bag is beautiful, but it also performs to a degree that it's practical as well. It can be effectively a very elegant working bag. Yet it's discrete, not shouting at your.''

There are plans to do more bags in the future, Ceccomori reveals. A clutch is mentioned, as is a weekend bag, but he is vague on the details. ''My personal mission is that we don't go out unless we have a special message to tel, a story to tell'. For now, that's one cat Ceccomori won't let out of the bag. 
 Joumeirah Magazine Collaboration

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