Five-Minute Pow-Wow: Lucy Sykes Rellie Talks Handbags


Judith LeiberLucy Sykes Rellie is a fixture of modern New York City society and a paragon of chic. Having made her distinctive mark on the fashion fronts of Bazaar, Town & Country, Vogue, and Allure, this designer darling (also a designer in her own right) has an impeccable eye for bringing couture elements to life in a wholly fresh, original way. It’s no wonder then that she has become the fashion director for Judith Leiber – the master of all things luxe, whose delicious indulgences she views as a key part of her personal style file.

Rue La La: What’s a surprising look to create with a Judith Leiber handbag this year?
LSR: Dressing your Judith Leiber down not up. Karl Lagerfeld once said, “Jeans and a white T-shirt can look couture.” Even more so when you add the twist of something decadent, decorated – something more obviously at home in a dressed-up environment.

Rue La La: What Judith Leiber handbags are in your personal collection?
LSR: Not enough. My wish list would be the Lacewing (Spring 2010), Chocolate Bar (available on Rue La La), and a classic shape in Rhine.

Rue La La: When and where did you last carry a Judith Leiber purse?
LSR: I threw a dinner on Monday for my husband Euan Rellie’s birthday. We took over Macao Trading Company in Tribeca. I invited forty people – a mixture of journalists, and fashion people, and artists, and even a banker or two. Everyone got carried away after the rum and ginger cocktails. We all ended up downstairs in the Macao lounge which has a seductive, exotic hipster vibe, and an amazing DJ. The other women there – supermodel Rie Rasmussen, TV exec Claude Davies, JWT boss Merrie Harris, stylists like Bonnie Morrison, Amanda Ross, and Tracy Taylor… they were all going crazy for my Leiber minaudiere. A few of the others were carrying Leiber too, so we had a Leiber-love-in. The evening and the glittery bags gave us this sense of the flirty, elegant debauchery of the 1970s.

Rue La La: Who did you just love seeing carrying a Judith Leiber bag?
LSR: Cameron Diaz at the Vanity Fair Oscars Party this year. She carried the Leeloo and looked timeless, glamorous and sexy. Paula Patton, Anna Kendrick, Nicole Richie, Katy Perry, Rachel McAdams, Rachel Weisz – each of them looked so chic with a Leiber. But Cameron just carried it off beautifully.

Rue La La: What should every woman have in her evening handbag?
LSR: A woman can’t go anywhere without her lip gloss. I’m never without a tube of Estee Lauder Eight Hour Cream. You can use it for anything.

Rue La La: What item is worth keeping out for space in the handbag?
LSR: A BlackBerry. Its nice to have a break but when I have a moment of downtime in the back of a cab, I take my BlackBerry out and catch up with the latest fashion blogs. Of course I always look at Rue La La first.


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