Eco-friendly, custom handbags Designer of Angelique Collections Open Boutique inside
Historic Penobscot Building
DETROIT – A piece of paper or the glossy pages of a high-fashion magazine aren’t just trash to Angela Boone; they are the inspiration behind Angelique Collections, Boone’s eco-friendly line of custom handbags, accessories and home décor.
“I look at handbags like they’re a work of art,” says Boone, who will debut her spring/summer 2015 line of high fashion, abstract 3D sculptured art and paint-themed designs at her boutique inside the Historic Penobscot Building, in Downtown Detroit.
“My line is unique and one-of-a-kind, for the woman who doesn’t want to see her bag on the arm of every woman or doesn’t want to carry the same bag that everyone carries,” she said. “No two are exactly the same.”
Boone fashions her designer line of handbags by sculpting her materials creating texture and dimension – an intricate process that turns paper and fabric into wearable, art. Paper, not leather or fabric, is her canvas in most of her projects.
Each bag is custom made and takes two weeks to complete. For custom orders, customers can select images, such as personal photos, to include on their handbags. The result: A unique item, fashioned into strong, durable and wearable art made and sewn by hand.
Angelique Collections includes a full line of handbags, including totes, purses, crossover bags, wristlets and wallets, which range from $38-$1200.
Art as inspiration
Boone’s love affair with handbags began at an early age and continued when she owned clothing boutiques in Southfield, and Oak Park. After filling her store with handbags from around the world, Boone, knew she could design them, too.
With her retail stores shuttered and downsized from her job as a construction project manager in 2009, and a month later her dad had a stroke and needed full time care. Boone went back to the drawing board to what she knew – handbags. Using her unemployment earnings of $300 a week, she launched her collection at her kitchen table while caring for her father.
Unable to buy expensive leathers, Boone used what she had around her — stacks of newspapers and glossy magazines.
With little money but plenty of passion, Boone’s first designs used stacks of newspapers and magazines from her personal collection. She cut patterns from recycled paper, sewed them by hand, fastened metal hardware, zippers and leather straps, and waterproofed each design.
Soon, people began noticing – and asking about — the unique bags Boone wore. Later, she began to incorporate custom fabrics.
“Everywhere I went, people were like, ‘Oh my God, where did you get your bag?’ ” said Boone, who soon began receiving custom orders. “I knew I was onto something.”
Her “something” was right. Boone’s line went beyond word-of-mouth, thanks to high-profile fundraisers for Ronald McDonald’s charity in Detroit, Detroit Public Schools, Art Institute of Novi, and pop-up sales in the City of Detroit last summer.
Today, Angelique Collections is sold around the world. She no longer limits herself to recycled art, but uses new paper and fabrics sourced from around the world.
Her inspiration comes from architectural structures, nature, art, classical music, vintage clothing, old movies, and the likes of great artists like Van Gogh and Picasso.
ABOUT ANGELA BOONE
Boone is a successful entrepreneur whose construction firm, Boone Management, completed school renovations at Howe Elementary as part of Detroit Public Schools’ $1.5 billion capital improvement program.
She is the creator of Angelique Collections and a former boutique store owner. Boone is an award-winning self-published author, and a lecturer and motivational speaker. She has been featured in publications such as Essence Magazine, The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press, Crain’s Detroit Business and The Michigan Chronicle. She has also been featured on radio stations and print magazines in London, New York, Florida and California.