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Five indie accessory designers you'll love.
Rather than paying heed to the old adage about removing one thing before leaving the house, we are far more likely to add three. And maybe a hat. Here are five brilliant indie accessory designers that will put a spring in your step.
Do not let the sudden burst of sunshine today take you for a fool. Nor the fact it’s warm enough to go out in your favourite light jacket that’s only good for two days of the year. We are in the Spring of Deception. The most wicked of seasons that comes just before Third Winter. You’re going to need gloves. And a new brolly.
Our hallway gathering of umbrellas includes one we “borrowed” from a friend and promised to give back five years ago (sorry Gemma). One that could cover a small country, procured from a conference we’ve never heard of. And one that we forget is wonky until we’re down the street. None are nearly as fun as Para Para’s. Designer George Wu, who is one half of one of our favourite Instagram accounts, already had us at the bold patterns, but the umbrellas are also hiding a brilliant trick. When they’re viewed through the free mobile app, the designs animate and come to life, putting a good spin on bad weather. It’s almost enough to make us wish for rain.
There isn’t a single lapel that Laura has knowingly let go unadorned, such is her love of a pin badge. It’s hard to get too elaborate in something so small and Plain Pins really make this a selling point with designs that celebrate colour and simplicity (without ever veering into children’s TV presenter territory). Our favourites are these checkerboard patterns inspired by architect Alexander Girard. Now we just need some very small chess pieces and they’ll double up as an extremely cute travel game.
The statement necklace has really come into its own in the Zoom era. It’s Friday, we can’t be bothered to change into a nice top, but we can throw a nice necklace over the t-shirt we did yoga in and style it out for half an hour while the actual purpose of the meeting remains unclear.
The intricate knot work in this necklace has been created by Brazilian jewellery designer Lygia Cerqueira dos Santos. Each piece in her Etsy shop By Mincanta is handmade and they come in a huge array of shapes and colours, which is good news because they’re all under £30 and we’re going to need at least five.
Since 2022 is going to be the Year Of Ten Thousand Weddings, let us be firm now: we are done with clutch bags. We really mean it this time. There will be no more attempts to hold three goats cheese tartlets, a glass of champagne, a mobile phone and a bag that’s little more than a satin-covered envelope.
Instead, we pay tribute to the crossbody bag. Not just a strap, but – joy of joys! – a strap that leaves our arms free for canapé grabbing, champagne toasts and waving in the air like we just don’t care. Our pick is this yellow number (£95) by N’Damus. Founder Nneka Onyenakala decided to create a line of bags to match her vast collection of shoes and to be honest we can think of no finer reason to launch a business.
While Laura’s enormous pin badge collection is deserving of its own wing in the Design Museum, Sian’s treasure chest of earrings rivals the second floor of the V&A. Look, when your hair is big, your earrings need to be bigger. It’s a rule of thumb that worked for Madonna in the 80s and Joan Cusack in Working Girl, so we reckon it still holds water. Manchester-based designer Julia Roy-Williams is the talent behind Wonderhaus, part of design collective Salford Makers, and we’ve got our eyes on her excellent hoops (£55). They’re screaming seventies disco cardio sessions and that’s exactly the sort of energy we want to take into the weekend.