Postmodernist to Modernist

Please note that the following handbags represent first prototypes and serious blunders. This blog documents our trials and errors and tracks our progress from inexperienced start-up to launching the Taryn Zhang brand. Please bear that in mind as you look through these photos and illustrations.

I am making a “last minute” change to the Alpha Collection. In the initial lineup, I designed a bowler bag, The Postmodernist. For the woman who “defies convention, that woman who is simple when it should be complicated, complicated when it should be simple, a woman with nonlinear aspirations and motivations, the woman who needs enough space in her handbag for Derrida…”

The Postmodernist


The two columns of horizontal lines are pleats and the sides are a combination of smooth material and draping. The back “V” are folder pockets. The Postmodernist was going to be another large bag, alongside The Overachiever and The Workaholic, and while I need a bag that can fit half my office desk and three-fifths of my bathroom counter and still leave room for portable nourishment (snack bar, fruit, etc.), not everybody else is a pack rat. I started to entertain my sister C.’s suggestion, to include a clutch.

I’m not a personal fan of clutches, generally. They don’t make sense to me. Why would I want to manually clutch a purse when I could hook one over my shoulder and leave both hands free? That in mind, I set about designing a clutch for my sister C. and also one that could offer the option of a chain that someone like me could whip out and use.

My intent was to simply modify The Postmodernist design, from bowler bag to clutch, but then I confronted the unanswerable questions “What is postmodernism? What does it mean to be postmodernist?”

Not the can of worms a designer handbags and accessories business needs to open, no sirree. Man, what was I thinking before when I named a purse “The Postmodernist”?! Plus, while I believe that the above bowler bag design could get away with being called Postmodernist, nothing else I was coming up with could! I scrapped the idea of The Postmodernist handbag altogether and went with something different, or sort of different…

The Modernist


And naming this clutch The Modernist makes so much more sense, which will be explained in the description blurbs on the website once I’ve gathered and organized my thoughts.

This is no tiny wallet-sized clutch, no. This clutch is made to fit a slim issue of a literary journal, a small paperback novel, a book of poetry or pen and notebook, fulfilling a requirement that I would have of any clutch I’d buy. You may now go to that fancy evening function in style and still have on your person your favorite book or Moleskine for those spurts of inspiration.

The gray TZ thing is a metal plaque with the Taryn Zhang logo embossed into it, either silver-tone or gold-tone depending on the style selected. I know it looks crappy in the line drawing I did in MS Paint (which, by the way, is the program I use to do the technical drawings; I know, so sophisticated), but I hope the actual thing will look fabulous.

About tarynzhang

Visit us at
This entry was posted in Collection, Design Conception, Learning Curve, One Step Closer, Progress. Bookmark the permalink.