Elaine Arsenault designs simple and elegant handbags for women. Absent of fussiness and non-essential ornamentation, Elaine’s bags use clean lines, pleasing shapes and interesting materials to make their statement. They are lightweight, durable and utilitarian.
Known for her ability to put together interesting materials - patterns, solids, super lux vinyls - Elaine constructs bags that are just as nice on the inside as on the outside, their patterned linings a delightful detail. Available in a variety of shapes and sizes ranging from clutches and small purses to mega totes and large shopping bags, each style targets a specific need. Elaine’s rectangular-shaped briefcase, for example, can confidently carry a laptop and folders. With two interior pockets as well as a small pocket to keep a pen handy, it is the perfect bag for schlepping your work around. Solid leather handles fit comfortably on your shoulder and a drawstring top closure will keep your contents secure.
With a background in sculpture and an art degree from U.C. Santa Cruz, Elaine began making bags in 1992. In 2001 she opened a boutique on 9th street between 1st and 2nd Avenues in the heart of Manhattan’s East Village. Surrounded by various designer boutiques, restaurants, specialty shops and old and new world businesses, Elaine’s boutique is not only her store, but her workshop. The bags are made in the back and sold in the front and Elaine can often be found in one place or the other.
Currently the store also features products from other local designers including gift items and jewelry. Eco-friendly cork coasters and matching trivets, porcelain alphabet napkin rings, ceramic serving pieces, silver and precious gemstone jewelry, a new line of leather bangles by Elaine and more.
Written by Bonnie Chan