When Abbe Held and her mother Bonnie had trouble finding handbags that they adored, they decided to start their own line. What started as a fun project, quickly turned into a budding business for the pair. Bonnie, whose maiden name is Kooba, and Abbe were always accessory addicts who were able to fill the void that they felt missing in the handbag world by creating their own. And from that, Kooba was born in 1998 and was quickly picked up by Bergdorf Goodman and Barneys. Ten years later the company has flourished into one of the most well-known handbag lines out there, with a huge following. Kooba’s line infuses a dramatic yet playful feel that introduces classic shapes, bold colors, and an overall product that will outlast trends and complement any outfit in a wardrobe.

Last week Vlad and I had the chance to meet with Abbe, the gorgeous mother of two. We previously introduced her on Purse Blog Savvy, but this was a full interview that we were truly looking forward to for months. As much as we were anxiously awaiting interviewing Abbe and hearing more from the creative director of Kooba, Abbe was equally as intrigued by our site and how it got started. The first feeling when meeting Abbe was as if she were a long time friend, a down to earth gal who cares about others and truly finds the joy that is to be had in life. We spoke to her about working with her mother and best friend and found countless similarities in her core trio compared to ours. Being able to finally meet a designer whose bags were one of the first brands that I began to love when delving into the handbag world was a real treat. And what we did not tell Abbe is that her Kooba Sienna holds a special place in our hearts, as my sister’s very first designer bag! We had a great time meeting with Abbe and look forward to working with her more in the future. Enjoy the interview!

Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • Sarah

    What an amazing interview, so fun! The new bags are beautiful, especially the small accessories!!

  • my new bag

    always had a thing for Kooba, never bought, but listening makes me interested,
    especially as probably all our budgets are on the smaller side these days.
    I definitely will check them out again!

  • wgs

    loving the Kooba Dale in phython….

  • Arlene P

    Thanks for the really nice interview article. I really love their older styles.

  • Jodi

    Don’t know if I should be proud or ashamed to admit that the Kooba Elisha Black Suede was my first designer purchase in 2007, and just one year later, I own 15 Koobas including 2 Siennas. I love them all, making it difficult to choose which bag to wear for the day. Thanks so much for this interview, I’m a huge fan of the earlier styles, and all of the Elishas.

  • ronnie

    i only wear kooba, especially when on sale. the leather is so soft, and i love the small ones as well. i never won anything in my life, and this would be an amazing xmas present to me!!!!!

  • JEnnifer

    I love Kooba bags and loved hearing how the company started. I have a handbag fetish and would love to add a Kooba bag to my collection!

  • izabella

    Thank you for nice interview! I love Kooba bags…

  • Brenda Giguere

    Thanks for posting this great interview. Another success story! It’s why I love this country.

  • Teresa Adams

    Great Interview. Love Kooba.

  • Staley09

    You couldn’t find them, so you created them. Thank you!

  • Leslie

    I have never met a Kooba I didn’t like- they are all amazing. I love the leather…

  • Barb

    Kooba was the bag brand that drew me into the Purse Forum.( I own 4) I will admit I waivered and strayed. I have been a Rebecca Minkoff fan for the last 1 1/2 year. But seeing these new bags I may be back! I love the red shoulder and the pocket bag in taupe on the last page. Good to see Kooba is back! Great interview, Thanks!!

  • karen

    gosh the dale is tdf, and the silver hardware is especially fantastic.

  • Marcinthemiddle

    Great interview, too bad it read like a love letter though-I kept waiting to hear PB ask about Kooba’s abysmal, non-existant Customer Service…so many people here on PB have moved away from the brand because of it…now that would have made it an “interview”

  • aqua

    I recently bought the Kooba Molly bag and only started using it this week. It hasn’t even been five full days of use and already the seam on two of the straps have come loose and I can’t use the bag. I called their customer service and the woman I spoke was not helpful and rude! I’ve bought cheap bags that have lasted longer than this. It’s really a shame because I am a big fan of their bags but this will be the last time I purchased one.

  • Tylerd1998

    I have always loved designer handbags- all my life! But I never knew what I was missing until I bought the Kooba Natasha handbag!! I ADORE THIS BAG!! ITS LEATHER IS UNEXPLAINABLE!! I didn’t know love until I got this KOOBA. I immediately bought another. I will make it a point to get all colors, styles. All of the other designers pale in comparison… I’m with KOOBA for life!!

  • Tara Sauvage

    Great interview.