PB: We pretty much know the story about how you got started, but can you share the story about how you are still in business with your mom? It is really interesting.

AH: I guess this all started about 10 years ago. Well, my mom has always been interested in vintage clothing, shopping and accessories. I was in fashion and she had the idea that we should start handbags in a way that was sort of organic. I don’t think we really thought about building this empire, but we were in the market. We always said how everything sort of looked the same, there wasn’t that much out there that was contemporary and interesting looking so we started the handbags. We opened up with Scoop and Bergdorf Goodman. Right when we shipped it, they sold and did well so the stores wanted to come and see the next collection. We were like “there is no collection”, so we then just begun designing for the next season, next season and it just grew. It kept doubling and tripling, then we opened up with Barneys. We were lucky because we were with some really great stores from the beginning and everything just kept escalating. Then the bags started getting picked up by celebrities and everything kept growing. It all happened very organically. We worked hard, but it all just came together. Sort of similar to you guys. We just kept learning as we went along. Now we are in a place where we can plot and plan. But there was a lot of catch up in the early stages.

PB: Your first collection was bought by Bergdorf? Was that really surprising?

AH: It was surprising. I was in sales before, so I knew the stores, and said, “we have this new collection, take a look” and they bought it. It was exciting. But seeing someone wearing your bag was even more exciting.

PB: Who was the first person you saw wearing your bag?

AH: It was a person on the street. I was actually in Paris.

PB: Really? Did you stop them?

AH: Ahh, no I didn’t.

PB: I probably would have! And told them it was my bag. That’s really exciting though. And what’s been the best part or challenges of working with your mom? I mean, we (Megs and Vlad) work together so, we kinda know what it is like.

AH: I actually work with my mom and one of my best friends from 5th grade, she became a partner after the second year, so it is sort of like a family. I think we work really well together, so as much as we fight one minute, the next minute it is like “ok, what do you want for lunch”. I think we know, we’ll never hurt each other because at the end of the day, we are all after the same goal. At the same time, when we do fight, we know we don’t have any boundaries, because you can speak to your best friend and mother in a way you could never speak to another employer – so that’s the worst. I think the best is that, in no time at all everything is fine and we are asking each other what you want to eat.

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.