L’Afshar brings together the worlds of art, architecture and accessories seamlessly with its contemporary handcrafted designs. Made in Dubai, their collections have led the way for a new style of evening bags which are effortlessly fashionable, on-trend yet sustainable in their production.
The accessories brand was founded by Lilian Afshar, a ready-to-wear fashion designer turned handbag expert. She conceptualised the first L’Afshar box clutch while working on her graduation collection in 2013. With the goal to create a compact, contemporary yet feminine bag that met all the needs of women everywhere, she combined her love of accessories and art to create these must-have occasion wear bags.
From beautiful textures to marble-like finishes, these bags have been spotted on many celebrities like Kylie Jenner, model Jourdan Dunn, and others. In a fun interview, we asked the founder all about her journey to becoming a designer, the materials she works with, and more.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
“I am originally Iranian, born and raised in London, Marbella, Vancouver and then Dubai. The world of fashion and design have always intrigued me. I knew I wanted to study fashion design in University and so I did.”
What is the story behind the brand?
“L’Afshar began with an order of just five bags based on a prototype from a design school project. We debuted at Paris Fashion Week in 2015, and as our recognition grew, so did our range. In 2020 we launched our line of furniture and objets d’art.”
“I founded L’Afshar from my love and passion of creating a beautiful product. Little did I know a brand was built off a desire to create.”
How has your collection and brand grown since your debut?
“Yes we have grown tremendously since our debut at Paris Fashion Week. We have worked with some of the best retailers around the world, had incredible celebrities carry a piece from the brand and have grown and connected with incredible clients internationally.”
Three words you'll use to describe L'Afshar?
“Sleek, collectors piece and distinctive.”
How did you discover your calling was in accessories?
“I always thought my calling was in ready-to-wear and accessories. The more I focused on the material, the more they excited me.”
Tell us a little about your design process.
“In order to bring our concepts and ideas to fruition, we are always charting new territory in the medium and exploring ways to continue innovating. We experiment a lot with different patterns, laminations, and shapes.”
“It starts from an idea, to prototyping and once the prototype is approved, the production process consists of 14 unique steps. A single piece is the result of 6 to 7 hours of work. Sculpted elements in particular require close attention to detail, and often need the most time to create; handles for our bags take close to 3 hours to shape.”
Tell us about the relationship between L’Afshar bags and sustainability.
“We intentionally produce in small runs and on a made-to-order basis, taking great care to avoid excess. We limit waste by recycling our leftover materials, giving life to new pieces.”
Who is your ideal customer?
“Someone who admires design and craftsmanship, avant garde and timeless.”
What makes you most excited about working with AiSPi?
“Connecting with new clients and seeing how they style the pieces.”
Please tell us a little about the pieces that will be present at the digital drop. Which one is your favourite?
“It’s a mix of classics and FW22, my favorite is the Maude with the emerald handle. It’s a special piece.”
What do you think of the AiSPi concept?
“I think it’s great, connecting unique brands with a market that is ready to explore new, up and coming designers.”