One would be forgiven for rolling one’s eyes upon hearing that the child of a celebrity had designed a handbag collection and opened a store. But when Marin Hopper – daughter of the late actor, filmmaker and artist Dennis Hopper and the actress Brooke Hayward – launched the Hayward line of leather goods in 2015 she had already spent nearly a decade working as fashion director at Elle magazine, and been a consultant for Tod’s. Her elegant range of accessories draws on the Hollywood glamour of her parents and their social circle – from Jane Fonda (Hayward’s best friend and Hopper’s godmother) to Andy Warhol. “The Hayward story is an American story, and it spans from east to west coast,” says Hopper.
The accessories came into being in 2008, when Hopper began making custom bags; their success spurred her on to launch Hayward, which is already thriving. Its fans include style icon Olivia Palermo, actress Mariel Hemingway and supermodel Amber Valletta, and last year Hopper and husband John Goldstone opened a New York boutique in a fittingly opulent space: the grand Upper East Side townhouse known as Atterbury Mansion. Located on the second floor of this turn-of-the-century residence, Hayward House consists of two luxurious, wood-panelled spaces described by Hopper as a “rich, cultivated, storied world”.
In the room on the right, arranged alongside the gorgeous original Grueby tile fireplace and chairs by Dennis Hopper’s old friend Frank Gehry, are the Hayward bags, all of which are handmade in New York City. There’s the small and smart H Crossbody style that fastens with a signature “H” and comes in black leather ($2,090) as well as Venetian velvet brocade ($2,890) and black and white ponyskin ($2,890); the bestselling Shopper (from $650) with linking straps, in mixed leathers ($1,800); and Hopper’s current favourite, the silk jacquard foldover Bobby clutch ($1,770). But the pièce de résistance, for those who have been very, very good this year, is the saddle-shaped Vallens handbag-cum-rucksack ($25,000) crafted in alligator.
Across the foyer, the second room is dedicated to a new range of clothing and accessories called Hopper. “It adds more of a unisex mood to Hayward,” notes Hopper, “It’s a capsule collection of travel bags, denim jackets, T-shirts, sunglasses and hats – all of which take direct inspiration from the life and spirit of my dad.” Walls are hung with photographs ($2,500 each, framed) taken by the actor himself, a rack is filled with white T-shirts ($120) printed with a silver and turquoise squash-blossom necklace – replicas of ones Dennis Hopper gave out at a gallery opening in Taos, New Mexico, in the 1970s – and a centre table showcases a felt hat ($595), created in collaboration with Stetson, alongside objets such as a brass walnut paperweight ($200) by Austrian modernist Carl Auböck. Most of the vintage furniture, so beautifully arranged in both spaces, is for sale via Los Angeles gallerist JF Chen. Prices are not marked, so should something catch your eye, don’t be shy.