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Downtown Living Introduces San Fran Fashion

by Sofroina Timmons
Put on your favorite blazer and blouse, slide into a comfortable skinny and throw on those fabulous heels. Look professional by day and ooze relaxed by night. How? Take your Bryna bag that’s how! Bryna bags have easy, deceptively simple designs with relaxed shapes and texture that will pull your style together.

Bryna Nicole McMills decided that stiff and fussy clothing was a thing of the past and created her own designs when she founded San Francisco-based Bryna in 2007. Bryna is all about removing impractical styles that aren’t flexible and cannot mirror our busy lives. Bryna achieves versatility in her handbags with the use of saturated bold colors, prints and textiles to add the right flair to any wardrobe. This holiday season giving a Bryna handbag to your gal is the only move she will appreciate!

What does Bryna mean?
It means ‘strong’.

Give us some background info on Bryna.
I started it after attending fashion school at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in San Francisco. I was working as a stylist at a local women’s boutique, putting together wardrobes for personal clients, and there were no cool urban chic bags on the market at the time, so I decided to make my own!

Who is your ideal customer and why?
We love to see girls with our bags that are on the move, live in a metropolitan area, have a strong personal sense of style and are busy living a fantastic life!

What trends do you think are spot-on this season?
Right now the Ikat print trend and any Navajo-inspired or ethnic fabrics are everywhere! A ton of python and exotics are saturating the market as well. For next year, I see more textured leathers being popular, manufactured prints and embossed features. The ethnic trend I think will continue and lead into western influenced designs.

What inspired your current collection?
The ikat group was inspired merely by the fabrics themselves. Hand woven and imported from India, the second I saw them, I knew I had to use them – I’ve always had a thing for ethnic textiles.

How does Bryna remain competitive in this market?
[We use] custom leather colors that we develop specifically with our tanneries, textures that stand out but are wearable. [This is] an entire collection that sits well together despite the different textiles, and quality details throughout each group.

Where can Bryna be purchased and what are the price points?
Bryna is sold at Poppy, Otte and Delfino in New York City, and online at,, and Price range is from $120 to $650.

What's next for Bryna?
For spring 2012 we’re showing amazing woven leather in some great basic colors and continuing to develop custom colors with our tanneries. Some new shapes are a new version of our popular Quintara tote, and one of my favorites is the new Peralta tote - a big slouchy tote with our Hermann hardware detail all along the front. We also dipped a bit into the fringe trend in a cross body clutch and messenger tote.

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