Meet Veronica Tharmalingam | Luxury Handbags and Jewelry Designer

We had the good fortune of connecting with Veronica Tharmalingam and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Veronica, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?

SLOW FASHION: All our forever pieces are wearable works of art featuring exclusive, rare, and unique designs that are unparalleled in beauty and intricacy.

SUSTAINABLY SOURCED: We source handcrafted textiles and trims already available in the market in India that are produced during each festival seasons thus we keep our carbon footprint to the minimum and are careful to not contribute to the fashion industry pollution. This results in fabric colors and patterns variations keeping all our handbag models unique every season and every collection.

SOCIALLY CONSCIOUS: 30% of all sales go to charities in India for Child Labor Abolishment + Sri Lanka Hospitals in rural areas:

Break down:

15% of sales helps abolish child abuse and child labor.

10% of sales contribute to better quality of life for Indian artisans ensuring quality food, shelter and education for them and their families.

5% of sales go towards a medical mission for Sri Lanka and India to help provide better health treatments in rural areas.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?

When I moved to Paris, France I was scouted on the streets and became a model. I worked with major brands in Europe and Asia and walked the ramp for Paris Fashion Week for Haute Couture. This experience expanded my vision for style and fashion. This helped me develop my own style which mixes Indian boldness and French sophistication. I would always carry an accessory that was from India every time I went out and people would always stop me and ask about it. This is how the idea was born, I realized this is a unique combination of fabric and jewelry and it could resonate with women around the world. My vision for the collections and my brand in general is to empower every woman to cultivate her uniqueness. My bags and jewelry are a symbol for women to find and nurture the graceful authority and the regal elegance that exists within themselves. To own a Veronica Tharmalingam handbag and jewelry is to dare to express this inner warrior queen everyday with class, authenticity, confidence and style. This is tied into the names of each model, which take inspiration from unique women from the past and present.

Even with the intricate art work you will see on our pieces we picked very light and high-end materials. Another problem I wanted to solve was to have actual space inside the clutch for example. I’ve always heard my girlfriends complain about their clutch or evening bags not having space to put basic essential things inside them. Even my smallest clutch can fit a phone, lip gloss, car key and 1-2 credit cards (YES!! For real). Another thing I wanted to ensure was that these bags were versatile. By changing the way the straps hook onto the bags you can achieve multiple looks.

It’s mostly by watching my mother do her shopping for sarees and jewelry that I learnt how to mix and match colors and jewelry patterns that are not common combinations. The stories she would tell me about her mother, my grandmother helped me develop an eye for fashion and colors. I guess it is safe to say that it is kind of in my DNA… in the 30s and 40s my grandmother was very avant-garde and a style icon in her city. Even before Fashion Week existed she would tell her tailor to make an outfit inspired by a movie she saw and she turned heads wherever she would go with her sarees and would always mix match her gold jewelry. My mother was the same. She would place custom orders at the stores for sarees and gold jewelry with unusual color combinations that would throw off and surprise the sales people, and they would even warn my mother that it was not going to look pretty etc. She would be so sure of her choices and of course the results were always amazing, and the store would order more and sell out each time. She was a trend setter and couturier herself. She would tailor clothing for herself and us (me and my brother) that would always have a wow factor jewelry. My mother had a very keen eye for fashion and what would be trendy in the future. So, I grew up observing all this and unconsciously soaking it all in. Ultimately, this is what led me to combine saree raw silk and jewelry techniques.

This industry is one of the most polluting and I want to keep our carbon footprint as small as possible by only sourcing materials already available locally in the market. Each season we use raw silk that is already produced for various events in India and thus we do not produce any additional material for the brand specifically. Same goes for the jewelry – I choose materials from what is already present and available. We also keep the numbers limited to be more sustainable too, we will only make 150 units per handbag model. The handbags are also made to order so unless someone places an order we do not start making it. Of course this means that there is a wait period for each bag, but it truly means each bag is unique to you.

To honor immense requests for pop up experiences with our brand we are starting by appointment only pop up events in LA you can email to info@veronicatharmalingam.com to book your slot. If we have space to accommodate you we will reply with the time and venue.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?

If we are staying in LA I would show them my secret LA 😛 Will take them to my fav coffee shop on Canon Dr in Beverly Hills : Euro Caffe where you get the finest Italian croissants plain or with filling and the best Italian coffee.
They also have amazing panini sandwiches, salads, oh well everything in their menu is super yummy!
Then we would divided and conquer LA, its so spread out and with traffic one week is a good time to cover the area 😛

I’ll take my bestie to Downtown LA to visit the Art district and check out the cool graffitis, then we would go for a quick bite in the Grand Central market, then the Bradbury building.Check out the Last Bookstore and finish with Union Station and Olvera Street.

Will have dinner at the Ace hotel and admire the Gothic buildings, have an after dinner drinks on the roof top at Perch.

Day 2 : We will continue our visit in DTLA with the Broad and MOCA for some culture check, will be too exhausted after this so order some take out from OTUS cafe and chill at home.

Day 3 : Go to Griffith Observatory and then Hollywood blvd and check out all the touristy places, walk of fame, Chinese Mann Theater, Hangout at the Roosevelt pool side after for dinner

Day 4: Go to LACMA, do some shopping on Melrose. have lunch at Little Door or Joan’s on 3rd. Or may be do Joan’s for lunch and dinner at Little Door 😛

Day 5 : Go to Santa Monica beach side and hang out there. do the 3rd street promenade. End up at Magic Castle after for the night.

Day 6 : Check out Venice Beach and Getty Center.

Day 7: Go to Hammer museum and finish off at the beach by Annenberg Community beach house.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?

I couldn’t have done all this without the help and support of my husband who has been there from day one for me. In fact he’s the one who put this idea in my head to start a brand for handbags and jewelry. He’s such an amazing human being that I get the privilege to call mine and go home to. He challenges me and makes me be a better version of me for myself and others. It’s so important when you are in a relationship to have such a supporting other half. So I’m truly grateful that I found him.

Website: www.veronicatharmalingam.com

Instagram: instagram.com/veronicatharmalingam

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/veronica-tharmalingam/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/veronicatharmalingam

Other: tiktok : @Veronica_tharmalingam

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