Today’s interview is with Lala, who you will soon discover is an incredibly accomplished woman with one of the most beautiful Hermes collections out there. I adore Hermes and it is always a treat for me to find somebody with a passion for the brand like Lala. I loved selecting my favorite photos for this interview and I hope you will enjoy them too. Meet Lala!
A beautiful rainbow of goodies
First things first – who are you? What do you do, and where do you live?
Who am I? I’m still figuring that out myself. I guess I’d say that I am a nerd at heart, more of a homebody than a social butterfly, and I like nice (not necessarily expensive) and unique things. I’m also a parent, wife, full-time employee outside the home, dog owner, and more often than not, maid, chauffeur, and home repairman.
What do I do? Truth be told, I’m an attorney, but I prefer to think of myself as a “counselor” and “advocate” for justice. But in all seriousness, I’ve done child custody and spousal support clinical work, mediation in criminal courts, employment law, corporate law, intellectual property litigation, electronic discovery, and ethics and compliance work.
Where do I live? I’m originally from the Pacific islands, but have ended up here in the Great State of Texas, via Northern California, Pennsylvania, and New York.
Louboutins, Medor clutch, Hermes bracelets and a Les Cles silk scarf
What is the piece that got you hooked on Hermes? What are some other brands that you collect?
I’m not sure that I can name just one piece that got me hooked on Hermes. Technically, it was a 90cm silk twill scarf that first got me started. Aside from Hermes, I collect Judith Leiber vintage pieces, both exotic skins and crystal evening handbags; Giuseppe Zanotti and Christian Louboutin heels; Alexis Bittar jewelry; and a variety of bunny rabbit, crocodile, koi, and butterfly tchotchkes.
Are there any designers that you used to be passionate about before, that now you aren’t as interested in?
I can’t think of any. It seems that the list of things I like has only grown longer over time. Unless you consider Sanrio (My Melody, Little Twin Stars) a designer brand, which I used to be passionate about before, but less so today.
Can you share your Hermes collection now? How big is it and what are your absolute favorite pieces? Some pieces that you’re missing that you’d like to acquire?
My collection is not as huge as one might think, but it is definitely big enough for me. I feel very fortunate to have what I have and don’t take any of it for granted. In terms of Hermes silk, I collect the GM cashmere/silk shawls, 90cm silk twill scarves, and 70cm vintage silk scarves, but also have more than a few of the pochettes, twillys, and mousselines. Because I find it harder to appreciate the design details in plisses, I have only a handful.
I collect Hermes bracelets – Clic and Clic Clac enamel bracelets, as well as the Collier de Chiens and the like. I think the patterned enamel bracelets are quite lovely and enjoy wearing them in stacks with clic clacs and CDCs mixed in. For me, the problem with the patterned enamels is that even the PM size is too big so I have to put cushioned adhesives in the interior of the bracelet to keep them from sliding off.
Black SO Black Birkin, Isidore horn necklace, Ex Libris Kimono scarf
I also collect the horn pieces like the Liao and Lena necklaces, earrings, and my absolute favorite, the Isidore horn and alligator necklaces. To be honest, the Isidore isn’t something I would buy based on sight alone; it wasn’t until my SA had me try it on that I fell in love. My first Isidore is in pelouse alligator.
I collect those little leather key charms – panda, horse, lion, ox, rabbit, raspberry, four leaf clover, horse shoe, boot, snowman, sail boat, race car, scooter, crocodile, and am on the lookout for the dragon, owl, and rooster! Something I recently became interested in is the vintage sterling silver key charms and was lucky to find the Kelly and Bolide charms on eBay. I know they are silly and not inexpensive, but they make me giggle, especially when I’m dressed conservatively for work and have one hanging from my bag discreetly. I do enjoy Hermes shoes, some of the RTW lines, belts, and of course, their handbags!
My handbag collection is pretty diverse. My oldest piece is a 1962 black box Drag, followed closely in suit is my 1966 tri-color box Kelly in Rouge H, Rouge, and Natural, 1981 Black Box Constance, 1988 black lisse crocodile Kelly, 1990 tri-color lizard mini Kelly, 1996 black agneau Bolide and vert cru Gulliver Kelly. I didn’t add my first Birkin until the mid-2000s. Thereafter, aside from a few more Birkins and Kellys, I added the Picotin, Massai, Kelly Pochette, and Lindy styles.
Vibrato Bolide with Turandot scarf
I’ve gotten bolder over the past couple of years – first, the Toolbox, and then the Roulis and Catenina bags this year. Aside from exotic skins, my favorite handbag leathers are Box, Fjord, Barenia, and Togo. (I wish Hermes would bring back vibrato!) Some of the vintage bags I’ve acquired from the resale market are the Jige and Faco clutches. Some pieces I’d like to acquire in the future include the vintage Lady clutch and the vintage patterned enamel clic bracelets. Oh, and last, but not least, a Lisse Vert Emeraude crocodile Kelly! If I’m going to dream, I might as well dream BIG!
Some amazing neutrals…and look at those Louboutin booties!
What about some of your favorite and most worn pieces in your wardrobe?
Truthfully, Editor style pants from the Limited/Express; these stretchy sleeveless “shell” blouses from Target, which are now retired, that I wear under every suit jacket I own; a silk/cashmere Chanel sweater that I bought in 2001; this amazing wool/silk blend collared cape with arm holes and a Sherlock Holmes style belt that I bought from Forth & Towne (another offshoot of the BR/GAP family of stores that stayed in business for less than a year); vintage Chanel and Gucci dress suits; camel suede Prada wedge mules; Ralph Lauren Broadtail lamb fur high heel boots; and Donna Karan nudes nylons (control top). I’m not very delicate with my things so I try to avoid fussy pieces (plus anything in white which I will inevitably spill coffee on).
What’s inside Lala’s Birkin..
What are your thoughts on Hermes price increases throughout the years? Any tips on budgeting?
I think that as long as there are buyers interested, Hermes will continue to increase their prices. Whether their asking prices are unreasonable or not, depends on the individual buyer, and as long as we live in a capitalist market, it’s difficult for me to say their prices are unjustified. For me, it all comes down to choices. I’d rather secure a solid education for my children than buy a diamond encrusted Birkin. I’d also rather drive a non-fancy American car so I can afford fine luxury accessories from time to time.
Hermes tri-color Faco clutch and an amazing, amazing Hermes gown
What are some of your other passions and hobbies?
In my work, I’m very left brain oriented so in my personal life; I turn the left brain off and switch my right brain on. One year I did ceramics and painting every free moment I could find; another year I decided to make fancy hair bows and beaded ankle socks for my DD; yet another year I decided to sew matching outfits for my younger children plus the dog (my oldest son and husband drew the line at matching boxers); then I moved on to decoupage and origami. I’ve also gone through my power tools hobbies and handyman projects. Lately, I’ve been really into photography.
Can you share some overall life advice?
My advice about life is best summed up by the 1989 movie “Parenthood” when the grandmother says, “Up, down, up, down. Oh, what a ride! I always wanted to go again. You know, it was just so interesting to me that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together! Some didn’t like it. They went on the merry-go-round. That just goes around. Nothing. I like the roller coaster. You get more out of it.”
Happy Year of the Dragon from Lala!
Finally- please share something surprising about yourself!
I can cite the prepositions in the English language by memory in less than 60 seconds.
Okay I have to admit that I didn’t remember what prepositions were and had to Wikipedia it (link here). Isn’t Lala’s collection simply beautiful? She has a very talented eye for matching colors and accessories and I’m so glad that she was able to share some of her favorite items with us. I also love that she mixes these luxury with items from Express and Target, and that she has a healthy appreciation for Sanrio. I have plenty of Little Twin Star paraphernalia if you ever want to trade for some Hermes goods, Lala! Just putting it out there!
Thank you again Lala for letting us peek into your gorgeous, amazing closet!