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L.A. brand Della sells chic bags while providing jobs for women in Ghana

May 26, 2011 |  7:09 am

Della African prints and sizzling temps go together like ham and rye. Which is why this summer we're investing in a colorful, African-print hobo bag from L.A.-based brand Della.

And it turns out that an investment in a Della bag is also an investment in the group of West African women who make them. The accessories collection is handmade by local seamstresses in Hohoe, Ghana — most of whom have limited opportunity (one in three people live below the poverty line in the country). Employment with Della provides these women with a steady income and job training.

Della2 Los Angeles-based designer Tina Tangalakis met now-head seamstress Beatrice Agabe when she volunteered at a local orphanage in Ghana. The two quickly bonded over their shared love of design and desire to improve the lives of those around them.

The bags themselves are gorgeous, and right on trend this season. The signature satchel, a classic hobo, features a pressed pleated pattern, lengthy strap and vibrant, patterned fabric. The brand's also added a line of cool, structured clutches for summer swathed in boldly printed fabrics. Prices range from $7 for a cloth business card case to $86 for a vegan canvas messenger bag.

The collection has already caught on with a few celebs, including Ashley Judd and Michelle Williams. 

And the brand recently joined with biggie contemporary brand Free People on a line of laptop and iPad cases, set to launch next month.

-- Emili Vesilind

Photos: Della's vibrant bags. Credit: Della