Artisan Showcase: Quiana Nwagbara

We are so excited to host Quiana Nwagbara and Sam Patania at our Artisan Showcase on July 19, 2018!

Quiana Nwagbara is the daughter in a mother+daughter venture in Scottsdale called BLU Bags, where they design and personally manufacture African-inspired handbags & accessories. Each design is unique and produced in very limited quantities giving an exclusivity to each handbag. BLU Bags is a melting-pot of cultural influence illustrating what African culture truly embodies – color, community, and tradition. In advance of the Artisan Showcase we posed three questions to Quiana:

What do you love most about what you do?

I love love love the time and collaboration effort spent with family while making our bags. Everyone has something to contribute and is so happy and energetic to do so. My husband selects the latest African prints to bring home from Nigeria, my mother helps design and manufactures each bag, my father maintains our tooling and industrial sewing machines and welds the handbag hardware, and my kids help sweep up our studio. We believe in the purpose of the company and are steadfast on executing our mission to build a quality brand while helping our community.

What is the most outrageous project request you have had from a client? Full story please!

Hmmm…. Not so much outrageous as it was creativity fluid. We met a manager from a Fur and Leather boutique at a vending event last year. The manager of the store admired our work and craftsmanship on our handbags, so she offered to showcase them for a month in her boutique. After the time period passed, the manager requested we take a lofty bag of their colorful furs and make several sample bags out of them. No limits, no details, no instruction, just create! (Somewhat outrageous, it was without payment terms as well) As we don’t usually sew intermittently as a business, we referred them to Arizona Fashion Source as a reliable non-profit organization that creates masterful pieces. Our hope is that the connection will lead to a long standing relationship between the two organizations.

Do you like summer in Arizona? Why/why not?

Honestly, I have no complaints. Arizona is beautiful all year. Simply put, the summer daytime weather can be a lot to handle but the beautiful summer nights make up for all of it.

BLU-Bags-at-Laura-Tanzer

We look forward to seeing you at the Artisan Showcase on July 19th! Our other guest artisan will be Sam Patania from Patania Sterling Silver Originals!

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