Designer Spotlight: Jacqueline Suriano’s Ethically-Driven Handbag
Recipient of the Most Socially Responsible Handbag at the Independent Handbag Designer Awards in 2016, Jacqueline Suriano grew up in El Salvador and Guatemala. Influenced by her parents’ passion for art and entrepreneurship, Suriano earned her BFA from Parsons and returned to El Salvador to launch her own self-titled line of handbags and accessories.
From her website: “Each of our bags are part of a long-term fundraising initiative, #PURSEuingOpportunities, which partners with ConectArte and United Nations World Food Programme to support at-risk-youth. From each sale, we are helping transform young adults, with the aim to create a more prospective future for them and improve their current health and food security.”
What makes Suriano’s work unique is not only her ethical approach to construction and design but also her direct involvement in educating the artisans in her workshop. Suriano does more than simply donate money for toward the future of young adults, she participates in hands-on instruction to encourage young people to find their passion and hone their artistic skills.
One of Suriano’s most popular style, the “Lola” clutch, features Chinese-American artist Nicholas F. Shi’s take on “pop cubism” as inspired by a more bold, geometric take on French Impressionism. Like Suriano, Shi takes colorful cues from Latin America in his use of color and bold images which makes the Lola clutches truly wearable modern art.
Check out Suriano’s bags (including new arrivals!) available at Esse in the featured photo and remember that every purchase helps young adults!