22 July 2015

Middle Eastern women reveal they really, really love handbags

Source: Conia. Arab celebrity Aseel Omran is the most recent addition to the Conia brand. The 'Aseel Omran Edition' handbags are designed by Aseel herself and the brand uses her 'AO' initials, which can be seen at the bottom right of this bag. The black velvet stripe topped with a hand-tied bow reflects a love for life. Each bag is created by hand in Conia's studio from the finest Italian Saffiano calf leather, selected for softness, durability and character, and hand-cut to maintain the natural elegance and minimise waste. Saffiano is a textured leather which has a cross-hatched pattern that is finished with a wax treatment, ensuring that the leather is scratch resistant, durable and easy to clean.

Outside of their family, handbags - not diamonds - make Gulf women happiest, says new research surveying Middle Eastern women. According to the research* commissioned by Conia, which offers luxury accessories, more and more women are choosing to purchase luxury clothing, accessories and gadgets to satiate their need for high-quality, well-designed and exclusive products.

Although abayas are considered a crucial wardrobe staple for most Middle Eastern women, many cited that they needed a complementary high-fashion handbag to finish off the look. Shoes were also high on the list, with many admitting to showing off new purchases on social media. Social media is also becoming a source of inspiration, with a high percentage of respondents sharing that they turn to Instagram to source products supported by celebrities, including Kim Kardashian, Paris Hilton and Taylor Swift.

The following items give women pleasure, in descending order of satisfaction:
  1. Handbags
  2. Shoes
  3. Abayas
  4. Jewellery
  5. Indulgent treatments
  6. Lingerie
  7. Oud (perfume)
  8. Gadgets
  9. Headscarves
  10. Flowers
A spokesperson from Conia said: "With fashion awareness growing in the region and women showcasing their extravagant taste, local women both young and old are only content with the finest trendsetting garments and accessories – this couldn't be clearer from the survey results."

The results are a boost for Arab actress Aseel Omran's exclusive Ao line of luxury branded handbags under the Conia umbrella, which were launched in June 2015. Conia says this is the first 'celebrity approved' domestic designer handbag to be made available in the Gulf, with Aseel herself playing a very active role in its design and production. 

Conia specialises in hand-prepared and genuine Italian leather handbags which are made entirely in Italy. To guarantee the highest possible quality of its products, it exclusively uses leather from leading Italian tanneries serving global fashion brands. Transforming raw hides into a material that will last for years takes 30 to 40 days using modern technology and machinery. The styles focus on simplicity, elegance, and quality. 


*Ten thousand Middle Eastern women aged 18 to 55 years were surveyed about their shopping habits.