No doubt inspired by their trips to exotic lands, with added vintage touches, the duo who make up Hayden-Harnett — Benjamin Harnett and Toni Hacker — reel you into their fabulous world of art, effortless style and chic leather goods. Their handbags, shoes and cuff bracelets say, in short, “Rock ‘n’ Roll ladies who lunch.” Whether skinny jeans or wide leg jeans, Hayden-Harnett’s leather goods just work for me. So who are they? And what power do they hold over my handbag-loving eyes?
Benjamin Harnett, Partner/CEO. Where he calls home: Brooklyn, NY.
Toni Hacker, Creative Director. Where she calls home: Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
What have you been doing lately?
TH: Ben and I just returned from a great trip to Paris and the Alsace region: great food, inspiration, shopping and wine! [Okay, I'm officially jealous.] After said wonderful trip, we??™re working on our Fall ??™09 collection: bags, apparel, outerwear, and shoes. The ideas are flowing like lava when it??™s hot. I??™m so excited about our 2009 collections and I feel it??™s the best work we??™ve done to date.
What is the style inspiration for Spring 2009?
BH: Xanadu. I kid you not. One day, Toni had an overwhelming desire to
watch Xanadu [because of] some flash of memory from her childhood rollerskating
to Xanadu cranked up all the way on HBO in the basement. I watched the collection blossom with ethereal feminine details intersecting with Memphis design graphics “to nowhere”; geometrics, colorblock, chunky leather-covered jewels, and more. It’s very wearable, while being vibrant, and unique. I’m sure Toni can put it much better.
TH: 100% Xanadu meets Melanie Griffith in ???Working Girl??? on a holiday in Miami.
Toni, what’s in your handbag right now?
TH: Bag: Our Clara Flap in Black Zeus
Items: Lido wallet, black Ray-Bans, 3 tiny candies from the hotel in Paris, eyeglasses, two Chanel lip glosses, one Burt??™s Bees lip gloss, L??™Occitane hand cream, dead IKEA bulb that I need to replace, New York auto registration renewal form, Rosebud salve (I have a slight lip balm problem), Anik Goutal mini perfume in Mondragore and Encens, Ting-Ting ginger candy, a cool marble, iPhone, Muji keyring notepad, a tiny wooden bird from a strange vintage belt I found in Kentucky many years ago, a plastic parrot hairclip from Peru that Ben bought me on our first adventure together…
What jeans do you own?
TH: Hmmm… I only wear either Diesel or Old Navy (kinda opposite, but their fits work really great for me). My latest purchases are all from Old Navy (their jeans are fantastic for the price):
-side tab ???diva jean??? in slate and el segundo
-high waist, straight leg ???goddess??? jean (perfect boyjean fit)
BH: Levis 559, I have several pair; they may be boring, I think they’re classic, and they fit great.
Hayden-Harnett Picks for Autumn/Winter Jeans
Faithfull silk tunic in ???digikat??? or ???feather print???.
Yoko sweater dress (with a belt; perfect over skinny jeans with boots).
Wyeth Fringed Tote in Cordovan.
Clara Flap Bag in Black Zeus
And the must-ask Denim Therapy questions are…
Which jeans can’t you live without?
BH: My Levis, of course.
TH: My dark indigo denim pencil skirt from Old Navy.
If you had to sacrifice one pair to the denim gods, which pair would it be?
BH: The lighter wash ones, I love my dark indigo pair.
TH: Anything with whiskering… ugh. Shudder… I have a pair of Diesels that are a bit too, uhhm, tricked out.
What if you had to sacrifice two pairs?
BH: Uhh… I guess the dark indigo ones, or maybe my backup Gap jeans.
TH: The tricked up Diesels…you can have 4 pairs, if you like.
What pair of jeans do you want to add to your collection?
TH: I??™m looking for a pair of panel jeans with a perfect stretchy fit… I like J Brand’s, so I think I??™m gonna go for it. Kind of like skinny jeans meet jodphurs — that??™s what I??™m trying to find.
BH: Anything classic, straight-fit, simple, and well-made (I’m such a denim novice, I suppose… but I’m learning.).
The Scoop: Look out for Hayden-Harnett denim items coming Spring 2009.
Keep an eye out: Hayden-Harnett for Target coming in late December 2008!
– Kathy Ng Hassan