I’m sure you’ve all heard the news today that Ola Kiely ceased trading on Monday following the collapse of its parent company Kiely Rowan. There were a few rumours about this in a Facebook group on Monday, yesterday a notice was put up on the Orla Kiely website and today the story hit the BBC. To say I am gutted is an understatement. I have loved Orla Kiely for about 15 years and use an Orla Kiely handbags every day.
I was only in the Orla Kiely Covent Garden store 2 weeks ago. I loved that little shop and went to buy myself a handbag to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary (it’s a tradition!). There was no indication of any trouble, although most of the downstairs was closed for a private event, and I was told there were no refunds or exchanges with my purchase. I love this pic I took of my two outside the Orla Kiely shop. They argued the whole time I was browsing for a new handbag and received a telling off from me.
Perhaps I should have twigged that something was up, although with a retrospective at the Fashion and Textile Museum it really did feel that Orla Kiely was at the top of her game.
I am pretty clueless about business matters but I was pleased to read that Orla Kiely Home and Design-branded accessories and homeware will still be sold through partners. Hopefully I will still be able to get my Orla fix through John Lewis and other retailers.
My house is full of Orla Kiely loveliness. I have bedding on all the beds, an Orla Kiely lampshade, tea towels, kitchen utensils, plant pots, blankets and vases throughout the house. I even have wallpaper in the kitchen and living room. I’ve collected her handbags for the last 15 years and have been lucky to receive them for birthdays and Christmas presents. I chose the Embossed Flower Zip Messenger a few weeks ago as a 10th wedding anniversary gift. I’ve wanted a black handbag for ages, although it’s currently still in its dust bag waiting to be used.
I really hope that handbags will continue to be made. Over the last few years I’ve noticed that the quality hasn’t been so good but I just love the colours and patterns they come in. Stem print is my all time favourite. I don’t really need more homeware items but I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t get my handbag fix every year!