Spring time is blooming in Tel Aviv, and so are the fashion designers! This Passover, I saw a lot of the raw talent springing up as fashion sales and events sweeped the city. While current favorites like Mirit Weinstock and Cafe Bizarre hopped up their mega-Spring sales, designers like Hilla Toledano (who recently made her debut on Israeli design website Coolil) was also throwing a party to launch her new line of high-fashion leather accessories.
These clutches, handbags, belts, and purses are quite impressive. The collection, which comes in colors like off-white, turquoise, and brown, is inspired by the art of the Roccoco from early 18th century Europe. That time period is characterized by fluid and curvy lines and shapes that resemble shells and gentle colors and fancy designs worthy of European aristocracy.
Hilla even titles her bags with Spanish words relating to Roccoco style (Corfe meaning old treasure chest and Perla meaning pearl, just to name a few.) While the styles may be based on Spanish designs, they carried with them an air of suave French sophistication, the likes of which I’ve only seen thus far among favorites like Mirit Weinstock.
The launch party was held in a lavish apartment (by Tel Aviv standards) off Dizengoff St. I’m not certain if the apartment was hers, but it’s common for the more independent designers to hold intimate parties this way to showcase their clothing among the city’s style hopping set.
Wooden floors offset the smooth sheen and bright colors of Toledano’s beautiful leather totes, clutches, and boxy bags. Guests mingled on couches, sipped champagne and bit into fresh desserts as they milled around the space, which reminded me of a more cozy New York showroom.
I stopped to eye the textures of Hilla’s larger leather handbags and oohed and aahed over the luxurious clutches and wallets with their gold chains and clasps.
Hilla’s only been on the Israeli fashion scene for about 2 years, but her designs and personal style reminded me of the ultimate style professional who’s been on the scene much longer. She wore skinny black pants, a fitted blazer, and large rimmed glasses that gave her an air of smart structure. She was quiet in nature but proud of her work and you could tell by the friends gathered around in the crowd to support her sophisticated styles.
I took home a small buxom Corfe purse in turquoise, which Hilla says is made from the purest Italian leather. Attached was a 24K gold plated buckle and chain. The chain can be disconnected to be carried as both a shoulder purse or worn by itself as a chain necklace.
This designer purse from the new Hilla Toledano collection is made of Italian Leather and 24K gold plated buckles and chain. This purse is like a boxed jewel, uniquely beautiful and with a large emphasis on the smallest details like its jacquard lining. The chain can be disconnected from the purse so it can be carried as a shoulder purse or as a chain necklace while holding the purse by hand. Any way you choose to wear this purse it will add extreme chic to any wardrobe.
I adore it! Apparently, so does my roommate. Upon returning home, Tal promptly grabbed the bag from my grasp and squealed, “Wow, this is beautiful. It’s amazing!” I thought so too and wore it that night to another party to play up a more dressy floral frock.
Hilla sells in selected shops throughout Tel Aviv, but those abroad can get a taste of her wares too by finding her latest at her page on Coolil or e-mailing her directly or on her Facebook page for something special. Contact me for details.
Photos: Hilla Toledano, Coolil