Handbag Tailor moves into new location

Samantha Hill

A handbag store on Geyser Street is expanding to bring more designer accessories to Livingston.

Handbag Tailor was located on Second Street in the Masonic Temple, but it had little street traffic, so most of the business has been online. Now the business is looking to expand, with more in-store items and its own accessory line.

Owner Jon Hesse, a local attorney, said he originally began the business with the intention of creating a product that improved on the classic high heel design, but in 2008 the economy crashed and it made growing the product more difficult. However, he was still in contact with some leather workers, so he decided the business could be an e-commerce store for handbags and women’s accessories.

Inside the business

With product input from Handbag Tailor employees Myia Morris, Emily Rockafellow, Monica Dahl and Mary Prescott, the business offers handbags and wallets as well as jewelry and scarves. The women said many of the items come from trade shows and designers across the U.S. and in Europe, and thus many of them are one of a kind.

Each employee has their favorite item but all agreed they like the handbags and jewelry options.

“It is so hard to decide which one I like most,” Dahl said, pointing at a scarf with a charm.

Other than relocating for higher visibility, Handbag Tailor also moved to allow for room to make its own accessory line, HT Leathergoods. The first product line is leather cuff bracelets with Swarovski crystals placed on a soft suede band. The women said the line was inspired by parts of Livingston, with product names like “The Depot,” “Park Street,” and “Callender Street.” Creating the accessory line is a team effort, and all of the women have all been involved in helping with the brand.

“We have all had to make a bracelet or two,” Morris, who does accounting for the business, said.


The business will go to a trade show in June to premiere the bracelets, and then will offer the bracelets online and in the store.

Hesse said Handbag Tailor will make more accessories in the future but he didn’t want to say what yet. He is also offering a software app related to the business that will be done sometime next month.

Handbag Tailor is located on 116 E. Geyser St. and is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Contact the store at 222-2205. Items can also be found on the business website www.Handbagtailor.com.

Samantha Hill may be reached at shill@livent.net.