Lydia Elise Millen is one of the UK’s most inspirational social media starlets, racking up over 570k followers on Instagram and over 450k followers on YouTube alone. We caught up with her recently to discuss her love of fashion, while unpacking the perfect pieces that make up her enviable handbag collection.
1. Describe your style in 3 words?
‘This is a hard one as I feel like my style changes from autumn/winter to spring/summer. I’m more tailored, chic and simplistic in winter, but during summertime, I feel that my style is more feminine, classic and playful.’
2. We love your designer handbag collection, how do you choose which bags to invest in each season?
‘To be perfectly honest, it’s a fairly simple process. If I can’t stop thinking about a certain bag there’s a good chance I won’t stop [thinking about that bag]. Therefore, my only option is to add it to my wardrobe and wear it with all the things that I’ve mentally styled it with before I’ve even add it to my basket.’
3. Do you prefer to make your bag purchases online or in store? And what bag were you most excited to buy?
‘Generally I’m a really impatient person, when I want a bag, I want it yesterday so I buy wherever I am but because I don’t live in London, I end up ordering a lot online which is great because they all come so beautifully packaged, it’s like a gift arriving for me!’
4. What bag trends do you like at the moment? I.e. mini bags or drawstring bags?
‘Small bags are definitely a weakness of mine, but I don’t go so small that they aren’t functional. For example, the Small Fendi Peekaboo is a great small bag that can actually carry lots of belongings within it.’
5. What styles of designer handbags do you think should be in everyone’s collection?
‘This is something that I think I can only comment on from my perspective because someone’s bag collection is individual to them. Some prefer only classics and others go for trend bags all the way! I personally like a mix. I have those classic bags which I feel bring a timeless edge to my wardrobe whilst I also own a good selection of trend bags which I will wear and wear until they fade.’
6. What details do you look for in a bag? I.e. The hardware, compartments, or versatility?
‘You’re guess is as good as mine, I wish I could put my finger on it because I would bottle it up and design my own collection with it. I just get this feeling like, “I need that bag, it’s beautiful”.’
7. Who is your favourite handbag designer and why?
‘I honestly don’t think I could pick a favourite, it changes so often! I go through phases of wearing a handbag to within an inch of its life and then I’ll move on to another. But at the moment I’m wearing the Chloe “Nile” bag a lot. It’s so unique and is quite the conversation starter, we actually spent a good 20 minutes talking about it and passing it around the table whilst at a country pub last weekend.’
8. Do you only purchase new season bags, or do you like to invest in vintage designer bags also?
‘It’s always new season for me at the moment, vintage designer bags are only of interest to me if they have been passed down to me from my Grandma, I feel like the story behind the vintage bag is the most magical part of it.’
9. We really like the fact that not all of your handbags are black, they come in an array colours and textures. Do you find it difficult to keep the bags in lighter colourways in pristine condition? Do you have any tips for maintaining the condition of light coloured designer bags?
‘I don’t know if I have some sort of magical power in this department but all of my light-coloured bags seem to stand the test of time. Perhaps it’s because I rarely wear new denim so I don’t experience colour transfer. I often use a damp cloth to clean my bags, but so far I haven’t experienced any dramas in that department. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for my shoe collection, but that’s a whole other interview!’