Hot Shop: Find Colorful, Sustainable Handbags at Marian Paquette

Photograph by Emily J. Davis

Laguna Beach resident Marian Barker’s former job as an interior designer first sparked her interest in making purses. “I was picking up fabric samples for my clients and thought, ‘Wouldn’t this make an amazing clutch?’ ” Barker says. “The vendors told me they just dispose of (the remaining fabric), and I started realizing the problem we’re having with landfills.” Barker opened her first retail location—Marian Paquette, which is her maiden name—in her hometown in November 2018.

Her line includes eight styles per season, such as the Jackie bag ($750 to $890) that comes in velvet, patchwork, and embroidered fabrics and can transition from a crossbody to a shoulder strap. With a focus on the environment, Barker uses the leftover fabric from each bag to create other items. This ethos extends to the design of her store: When a house Barker worked on 20 years beforehand was scheduled to be torn down, she took cabinets, doors, awnings, and drawers and repurposed them in her shop.

Barker also creates ottomans, poufs, and pillows that are sold at the boutique. Customers can opt for a custom purse as well: Bring in a fabric, select a style, and Barker will have your purse ready in about two weeks. Watch for a line benefiting charities that fight climate change this spring.

Photograph by Emily J. Davis

CRUSH ON YOU
Joan bag in crushed velvet, $550

Photograph by Emily J. Davis

WELL RED
Alex bag, $790, and Liette clutch, $540

Photograph by Emily J. Davis

IN STITCHES
Jackie bag, $890

Marian Paquette
353 N. Coast Highway
Laguna Beach
949-715-5299

Facebook Comments