It's intriguing to know that behind the sensual, bondage-like Fleet Ilya leather good is a husband-and-wife team. With backgrounds in jewelry-making and saddlery, Ilya Fleet and husband Resha Sharma use their expertise to make tastefully teasing, luxuriously layered, armor-like accessories that equally call to mind fetish and futurism.
This time around, the dynamic duo has put a quintessentially spring touch on their newest collection. Featuring soft coral and bright mint, each bag and bracelet this season is a blend of superior leather, sweet color, and seductive construction.
Below, take a look at the SS11 collection, the designers' photos from the Fleet Ilya studio, and my interview with both Ilya and Resha!
Describe Fleet Ilya in three words.
Conceptual / Provocative / Craft
Your accessories often veer on the side of fetishistic. What inspired this direction?
ILYA: The fashion line definitely has fetishistic references as it is influenced by our "Restraint" line, which is a huge part of the brand's identity. The two lines often cross over and feed off each other aesthetically, but accessorising the naked body is where it began for me.
What was the inspiration behind your Spring 2011 collection?
RESHA: SS11 started with palette, both with the leather and the powder-coated hardware, combining sherbet colours with muted tones, and the dark shadow versions in black on black. We had a particular type of woman in mind–domineering and athletic–but who maintains her sense of fun and femininity.
What does your favourite vintage bag look like?
RESHA: It was red. Unfortunately, it no longer has any handles.
Tell us about the design process. How is it collaborating with a loved one?
ILYA: It's definitely not a traditional design process. We start from making–not drawing–and there's a very different dynamic working with a "loved one" as we have no problem arguing with each other to get across our opinions, but I think it does mean we end up pushing each other creatively more so than a platonic creative partnership.