At the Khirma New York flagship (102 Charles Street), beauty is in the hands of the beholder. While many of designer Khirma Eliazov’s handbags, totes, and assorted leather goods are the stuff of covetous dreams, her latest pieces – Khirma x Swarovski for YoungArts – are even more beguiling. The limited-edition capsule collection is accented by an effusive integration of the Austrian brand’s world renowned crystal materials into Ms. Eliazov’s signature looks, with a percentage of the sales apportioned to benefit the many programs of the National YoungArts Foundation.
Swoon-worthy pieces, featuring the brand’s identifying hardware and purple satin lining, comprise the collection: the black-tie box frame Marchese Clutch in gunmetal, bedecked with gunmetal Swarovski crystal medley, also in silver crystal medley on a silver frame; the Lindsey Clutch with its black python frame and bands of black Swarovski crystal, also in gunmetal python with bands of silver crystal, and in silver watersnake skin and bands of silver crystal; and the Arison Pouch, Swarovski encrusted grey satin with an adjustable cord and jeweled handle, also in black satin with a cluster of black Swarovski crystal and pearl embroidery. Cranberry, lavender and green versions are slated to be introduced for the holidays.
The career trajectory of Ms. Eliazov progressed steadily from being an accessories editor to freelance styling and brand consulting, before she finally assumed the reins of her own brand. Though initially ill-prepared for the monumental task, she was always a hard worker and a quick study. She knocked on the doors of various tanneries in midtown to acquaint herself with materials. She asked a friend to teach her how to draw. She hounded a Brooklyn sample maker until he acquiesced. Then of course there was the pesky detail of actually running a business. Nevertheless, as the saying now goes, she persisted. Seven years later, Khirma New York is sold in tony department stores including Bergdorfs, Saks, and Harvey Nicks in the UK and Hong Kong.
Ms. Eliazov is also partial to deserving causes. She worked with Goods for Good by commissioning craftspeople in Malawi to create bags for her. She worked with the local tailors there, instructing them on how to stitch leather onto the canvas frame with their Singer sewing machines. A significant percentage of the sales from those pieces were then donated back to the community. Her latest crusade is this collaboration with Swarovski that benefits the National YoungArts Foundation, which provides a range of developmental assistance to budding artists all over the country. Khirma joins the continuously growing network of brilliantly creative brands brought together by the foundation to nurture and sustain the arts.
Promotional images courtesy of Khirma x Swarovski for YoungArts/Images from event by New York Style Guide