SCOTTSDALE — For fall, the "it" bag has been scaled down to mini size. Many of the smaller bags we’re seeing are miniature versions of our favorite oversized styles. But I recently spotted something a bit more covert, worthy of the stealth styling of a 'Bond Girl.' The Füchsin Ave Luxe Travel Garter Purse Collection was created by emerging accessories designer Cara Cerutti Holmes. The Füchsin (pronounced fook-shen and meaning vixen in German) – garter purse may resemble ones fashioned from satin with lace and ribbon trim, but it's not your grandmother’s garter purse, where she stashed lace hankies and emergency money. This version is edgy, modern, and made of leather. Some styles even have studs or pleated fabric trim. It’s a modern twist on the vintage boudoir-esque pouch, with a whole lot of attitude. I recently caught up with Cara to discuss her new collection and get tips on rocking this chic little accessory.
What inspired you to design a garter belt purse?
During my college years (a.k.a. party years), I always hoped someone else would create a garter purse. I was tired of carrying a purse to a nightclub or worrying about it getting stolen as I danced the night away. Fast-forward 10 years, and though my party days are far behind me, I found myself with the same problem in a different scenario. I now wanted a way to be hands free when I took my son to the park, to a festival, a sporting event, or even to run errands – but I still wanted to carry my phone for those great photo ops. When I looked at the existing market I wasn’t satisfied, so I decided to start Füchsin Ave.
What sets your design apart from similar designs?
The garter purse is not a new concept. But it’s a concept that has failed to gain main stream popularity, in my opinion, due to the fact most brands are intended to be worn underneath clothing to hide your personal items and therefore face a disconnect between functionality and fashion. Füchsin Ave has taken the garter purse to a new level.
What's in your garter belt purse?
I always carry my iPhone and love having it strapped to my thigh so I can easily access it for impromptu photos of my kiddos. I also carry my credit card, ID and business cards. I can’t live without my MAC Lip Glass, and of course, my car keys. And there’s always room for concert, game or amusement park tickets.
Which famous fashionista could you see sporting a Füchsin garter purse?
It’s tough to name just one … because the collection spans various style genres and is functional across various age demographics. I can narrow it down to one fashionista for each design:
London: Angelina Jolie (sexy and mysterious, worn underneath a form fitting gown with signature thigh-high slit)
Cambridge: Natalie Portman (girl next door goes to Harvard then Hollywood)
New Haven: Gwen Stefani (a little naughty school girl meets grunge)
Sturgis: Dita Von Teese (the triple threat: burlesque, tattoos and motorcycles)
Milwaukee: Stacy Keibler (a retired WWE wrestler with the best legs around). Talk about outside the norm. She’s unexpected and confidant, the ultimate Vixen.
Paris: Gwyneth Paltrow (elegant, classic and always in style)
Lexington: Taylor Swift (patriotic, casual, and country lovin')
What's next for Füchsin?
Füchsin Ave plans to release a new line of garter purses each year. We are currently working on a bridal line (expected Summer 2014), which will include styles ranging from 1960's retro bridal chic to intimate boudoir lace. After that, we plan to release a collection inspired by vintage Italian leather and classic Vespa scooters.
If you were a Chic Spy Agent, what would be your code name?
Isa March. A combination of my two passions; dance and fashion. Isa, short for Isadora, inspired by Isadora Duncan, a pioneer in American dance; and March, short for Marchesa, my favorite high end fashion brand.
For more information or to buy a Füchsin Ave garter purse, visit fuchsinave.com.
The Chic Spy
(Photo credits: Werner Segarra Photography)