Coca was formerly Celine’s head of accessories and the man behind icons like the Trapeze.

Everyone should be able to own a Mulberry

“Staying accessible is very important for us in all product categories. Our core offering will be priced between £595 (S$1,180) and £995 (S$2,000). This is the Mulberry heartland, and we want to stick to the label’s original price positioning. It’s very important for us to respect (making the brand accessible to customers), be they young or old… I want Mulberry to reach out to as many people as possible, and this means working hard to make well-designed, functional products that are also affordable.”

Existing hit styles will be even better

“The Bayswater was created in 2003 by Nicholas Knightly and is a great design and Mulberry’s bestseller. Now it’s 2016, and I wanted to make it perfect for today’s lifestyles, so I’ve re-engineered it. The handles have become slimmer so they will always stand upright. I’ve removed the feet, shrunk the postman’s lock, and removed the key accessory so that the bag is much lighter. It also now has a more structured shape to hold laptops and tablets better. We will offer both this modern design and the classic one, because we love them both.”

Clockwise from top left: The Selwood leather shoulder bag; Clifton shoulder bag/clutch; and the sturdier updated Bayswater, with handles that won’t flop.

New designs will be equally desirable

“I’ve introduced new styles across all sectors (besides bags, there’s ready-to-wear, shoes and jewellery that aren’t carried here). One of the most accessible bags in the new collection is the Clifton shoulder bag (prices here start from $1,230), which comes in both small and large sizes. It has three separate zipped compartments for easy organisation, and a detachable cross-body chain strap so it can transform into a clutch for the evening.”

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A modern bag is a well-constructed bag

“When designing a bag, I always observe and then suggest new ways to work with leather to improve the construction. For example, the handles of the updated Bayswater no longer fall sideways (but the bag ultimately still retains its original silhouette), thanks to a different kind of stitching and slight alteration to the proportions… I’m passionate about design and all the processes (necessary to realise it)… I like structure, shape and physics, and want to create pieces that are exciting, modern and loved by men and women all around the world.”

F/W ’16 reflects Coca’s punk, Teddy boy and biker obsession.

Looking backwards can be a good thing

“I think in order to look forward, one must look into the past. Bringing back the brand’s logo from the early ’70s (the word ‘Mulberry’ spelt out in a discrete, serif font) is as much a way of modernising its look as it is respecting its heritage. I love this original logo – it has so much style and character, and represents this new era of Mulberry very well. With Mulberry being a brand that’s proud to be British, it was also important for me to add the word ‘England’ beneath.”

The studs synonymous with punk dressing show up on structured bags like (from left) the Camden bucket, Chester tote and Maple tote.

Oh, and punk never dies

“London inspires me a lot because of its diversity, freedom and attitude. I love the way girls here wear clothes and have always been a big fan of British fashion (think punks, Teddy boys, and Hells Angels with their brand of biker chic), as well as tartan (Coca’s debut collection reflects these influences, including oversized stud buttons and chains as embellishments).”

An adapted version first appeared in Female‘s July 2016 issue. 

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