Sophie Hulme’s clean-lined accessories have been hanging from the arms of London’s fashion set since the namesake designer launched the label in 2008. And, her star has been rising ever since, winning awards and accolades along the way. Yet, for the first time this month she is hitting two new milestones, as well as celebrating a decade in business. Not only is Hulme opening her first bricks-and-mortar store, in the capitals prestigious Burlington Arcade no less, but she’s also expanded her range to include personalisation.
Lined with soft cream curtains and brightly lit, the intimate boutique is home to sweetie coloured bags that can be customised. Though they will soon be offering an in-house hand-painting service by signwriter Mark MacDonald (for £100), the label is currently offering two types of personalisation.
The subtlest of which is blind embossing. Up to three letters (initials, most likely) can be pressed onto a bag by n craftsman working in the store’s garret. Under Hulme’s watchful eye templates have been created that ensure all letters are perfectly aligned and placed in the optimum position.
The new Leather Letters collection is being touted as the brand’s signature customising service. Using the label’s in-house font, an alphabet of stacked and compacted saddle leather letters in a range of house colours can be pressed onto the surface of a bag. Taking up to 24-hours this process requires artisans to use weights and compresses to attach these embossed letters to accessories.
‘We are quite unbranded in the sense that we don’t have our logo on things,’ the designer told Grazia, ‘The bags are very much about the woman who carried them, so naturally, personalisation makes sense because it’s not about us, it’s about the woman. I think she should have her name on it, not my name as it’s more important.’
Though only a pop-up, Hulme has already set in motion plans to open a percent location on Chiltern Street in Marylebone next year.
The Sophie Hulme Personalisation Boutique can be found at 64-65 Burlington Arcade, W1 and is open 10 am to 6 pm Monday to Saturday and from noon until 5 pm on Sunday.