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  • LiiLii Zhao

    Handbag Designer, Product Designer

    New York, NY

- 8 years design experience in Handbags + SLGs + Home Product - Worked with brands such as Kate Spade, L.A.M.B and Calvin Klein - Created original innovative handbag collections for ZHAO and Aimee Kestenberg - Education: Rhode Island School of Design

Work Samples

  • Concept and Color Board-2017

  • Westport Collection 2015

  • ZHAO collection 2012

Work History

  • Handbag Designer, Full Time

    Affordable Luxury Group Handbag Designer I 1 year and 5 month I New York I NY
    - Worked with founder and creative director
    - Designed all elements of seasonal handbag: concept, shape, construction, material and hardware
    - Conducted trend research to devise new concepts for products that were both on-brand and trend-right
    - Illustrated concepts by creating sketches and conceptualizing color palettes/prints for design presentations
    - Checked all measurements and specs on new samples and ensured product quality and integrity
    - Remedied quality issues through communication to factories

  • Designer & Founder

    • ZHAO
    • Jul 2010 - Sep 2014 (4 years 2 months)

    - Created a original innovative handbag collection. price point $60-$450. luxury leather.
    - The line was sold at Searle on Madison Ave, Boutique in Soho and other stores around tri-state area.

  • Handbag Designer, Freelance

    • Kate Spade
    • Jun 2012 - Aug 2013 (1 year 2 months)

    - Worked with senior designer and designers on design and tech packs.
    - Designed new handbag and SLGs from concept to spec.
    - Executed sketches and life size technical drawings.
    - Ensure the product reflects original design.

  • Handbag Designer, Full Time

    • Rugged Equipment
    • Jul 2008 - Jul 2011 (3 years)

    - Design innovative, customer focused product contributing to a 100% increase in sales since 2008.
    - Designed Handbags, SLG, Backpacks for multiple lines. Price point $20-$140.
    - Responsible for every aspect from concept to final product.
    - Daily communication with vendors to assure correct design and execution.
    - Review and technically correct prototypes, and all samples stages in order to achieve final samples.
    - Worked with different materials, such as Canvas, PU, Jacquard and leather.

  • Product Designer, Full Time

    • Milano Series
    • May 2006 - Jul 2008 (2 years 2 months)

    - Responsible for designing a wide variety of products from tabletop to soft goods like tote bags.
    - Other clients included: Crate & Barrel, Container Store.


  • Rhode Island School of Design

    • MFA Fine and Studio Arts
    • 2003 - 2005
  • China Academy of Art

    • Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Industrial and Product Design, Ceramics
    • 1998 - 2002



Graduate Fellowship at RISD Scholarship at RISD Award of Zhejiang Art Exhibition Chongli Prize & Scholarship Scholarships at CAA Scholarships at ZSID