GIVE THEM A TROPHY: The fifth annual Independent Handbag Designer Awards are open for business. The organization — started by Emily Blumenthal of Handbag Designer 101 (and the forthcoming book “The Handbag Bible”) — is fielding entrees on their Web site until April of this year. All independent accessories designers are eligible to enter. The 2011 awards will be presented by InStyle magazine, and prizes include the opportunity to develop a collection for Saks Fifth Avenue, Isabella Fiore or Timberland, as well as feature placement in InStyle magazine and on instyle.com.
Last year, the IHDA received approximately 1,000 submissions, and Blumenthal anticipates this number will double in 2011. Past winners include Katherine Kwei, Adriana Castro and Follis by Catherine Meyer, whose pieces were featured in Kate Spade’s resort 2011 collection.