Guelph: Local luxury

When looking for the next greatest accessory, I often find myself flipping through magazines, drooling over the latest Italian or Parisian export. So it is such a treat when the item on your ‘it’ list happens to come from your own backyard.

Toronto designer Jenny Bird ( grew up in Elora, Ontario, just 20 km north of Guelph. New York’ Searle was the first retailer to carry her eponymous line of luxury handbags, and the designer is quickly gaining momentum.

Her current line of vintage-inspired evening clutches features high-quality leather and luxurious purple lining. Jenny, also a talented jewellery maker, refurbishes vintage pieces to use as hardware on the handbags. As soon as it’s in your hands, it’s confirmed: you’ve just found your new best friend, the perfect companion to a night out. And worry not, the eternally classic design means it won’t just ditch you next season.

Look for Jenny’s Fall 2009 collection, which will include a larger-sized day bag that will still have the sleek styling and vintage hardware of her current line, but with more room to carry all of the things a girl needs during the day. The designer will also be experimenting with new textures and colours in her upcoming collection.

Jenny Bird is available in Guelph at Blush (38 Quebec St., 519-822-9669).

Photography by Heather Loney

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