Eight years ago Alison van der Lande decided to swap the high-pressured life as a successful PR consultant in London to develop her own range of elegant bright travel bags, from her Hampshire home.
With a background in marketing, and a love of shopping, Alison spent up to three years researching and developing the concept. She invested L8,000 and launched her first collection in 2004, with The Classico Weekend bag – a half-moon shaped travel bag in bright colours. Within three months of the launch, it had been snapped up by Selfridges and then The Conran Shop - Alison knew she was onto a winner.
Alison soon needed more space, so moved the head quarters into a spacious barn in the garden of her Hampshire home, and carefully built the collection while juggling three children, half-terms, holidays and school exams. 2006 saw the launch of The Daisy Doo (named after her daughter Daisy). This easy day bag, goes over the shoulder, and has pockets for lipstick and mobiles. It sells thousands every year and comes in over twenty colours, from metallic, pastel, white and patent.
A sports lux collection followed, with a range of brightly coloured golf and tennis bags, for both men and women. By 2007 included Harrods and Fortnum and Masons. Celebrity fans spanned Hollywood, New York and London – and bespoke commissions include a 007 Casino Royal special. Celebrating its 5th birthday in March 2009, Alison van der Lande moves into the ground-floor of House of Fraser, Oxford Street with her own area in the designer bag section.
Charlize Theron, Owen Wilson, Elizabeth Hurley, Sarah Jessica Parker, Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Bacon, Sheryl Crow, Rachel Weiz, Emma Thompson, Antonio Banderas, Ringo Star, Pierce Brosnan, Elton John, Mariah Carey, Daryl Hannah, Ewan McGrego,r Piers Morgan, Johnny Lee Miller, Ben Stiller, David Schwimmer, Chris Rock, Sandra Bullock, Kneau Reeves, Patrick Swayze, Juliette Lewis, Judy Finnigan, Daniel Craig, J K Rowling, Kyle Machlachlan, Lisa Snowden, David Walliams, Jamie Oliver, James Martin, Mrs Wayne Newton, Emma Bunton, Judith Chalmers, Gok Wan, Cat Deeley, Victoria Beckham