It’s not often that you can find a bag that can truly hold everything and still look good in the process. But the newly-launched luxury handbag label Senreve, co-founded by Coral Chung, attempts to do just that.
“The bag is so much of an extension of me as a woman,” Chung told Motto. But in her high-powered life at firms like Bain and Medallia, she says she felt like she always had to choose between beauty and practicality when it came to her work bags. And she felt other luxury brands weren’t designing for a woman like her in mind — a woman who’s running between meetings with a laptop and presentation materials in hand. “I wanted to create the dream bag for me and my friends,” Chung added.
Before founding Senreve, Chung said she and her co-founder Wendy Wen found that the world of tech and investment banking that they inhabited was not always friendly towards women. “People would give us coaching advice about our communication and our style. Things like, ‘You just look really young, and your voice is high pitched and you’re bubbly and you smile a lot. So you should tone it down and be more serious.'”
Chung and Wen found this attitude frustrating. “Of course we appreciate coaching and feedback. But on the other hand, we felt like this is inauthentic to who we are we happen to be: smiley and friendly and bubbly. That doesn’t mean that we’re less credible or less intelligent.” They are now determined that their brand reflect women like them — women who are strong, powerful and value beauty and luxury.
Senreve used a data-driven approach to truly understand that customer. They surveyed hundreds of women to learn what they look for in a great purse, and according to Chung the company gathered a database on specs of hundreds of bags from different brands. They used what they learned to create a bag where everything — from the convertible straps to the interior pocket layout — was designed for a specific kind of woman.
“Young professional women don’t want to be bucketed as just a career oriented professional or a mom who’s on the mommy path. They kind of want to be a little bit of everything,” Chung said. “It’s this whole idea that women are not ‘either-or,’ they’re ‘and.’ I’m a mom, and a professional, and an executive, and a leader, and really involved in my community and a wife and a daughter and all of these things.”