ALI Pultar’s obsession with high-end fashion began as a teenager.
“I have always loved fashion houses,” Pultar says.
“I remember when I saw my mum’s first designer bag, I said ‘What is that?’ And she said ‘You’re not allowed to touch it. It only comes out on special occasions’ [laughs].
“I remember that and as she grew her collection my love for fashion grew
“I was fascinated by Dior and fashion houses. When Paris Fashion Week would come around, I would be trawling the internet to look at pictures and read the articles
“I love it all, but handbags have always been a bit of an obsession for me.
In April, Pultar took that obsession and turned it into a business with the launch of Newcastle’s first high-end designer handbag hire service, Spritz Lane.
So far she has amassed a collection of 40 designer bags from fashion houses including Chanel, YSL, Prada, Balenciaga, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Dior, as well as other brands such as Kate Spade and Michael Kors.
Designs from brands such as Chanel, Gucci and Dior typically cost in their thousands. Pultar says Spritz Lane is all about making it attainable for those with designer tastes to be able to enjoy a “little bit of luxury” for a fraction of the cost, while also minimising fashion waste.
“It’s a chance to enjoy a little bit of luxury without the huge price tag,” Pultar says.
“For me, I have always loved handbags. I feel like it can make an outfit if you have that little splash of colour or even that classic look, it can make you feel special and make your outfit pop. It can complete an outfit.”
The collection includes classic designs such as the Dior saddle bag, rare finds like a baby blue leather Prada shoulder bag and a quirky wicker crossbody Kate Spade bag in the shape of a lemon.
Pultar personally chose each bag for the collection, with the aim to offer timeless pieces that can go with any outfit, as well as a handful of more fun, colourful designs that might otherwise be overlooked.
“For me, personally, this collection is all about being a little bit outrageous,” she says.
“You are probably not going to buy a blue Prada when you go to buy your first designer bag. So for those options we wanted that bright and a little bit of difference in the collection.”
The collection can be viewed online and hired via a calendar system that displays when each bag is available.
The bags are rented out for a four-day period and can either be posted out Australia-wide in the mail, delivered in the Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Hunter area, or picked up via appointment from Spritz Lane headquarters in Newcastle West.
The launch of the business is the first stage of Pultar’s plans for Spritz Lane.
She also offers styling sessions and will incorporate those with the bag hire side of the business when she opens a Spritz Lane storefront in Newcastle West early next year. This will be a one-stop-shop “glam bar”, offering services such as make-up artistry, tanning and hair styling.
“It will be a bit of a glam hub, so there will be tanning, hair, make-up and bags in there so you can really come in, glitz up and go out,” she says. “It will be ideal for people getting ready for events like weddings or a special night out, as well as photo shoots.”
If the name Spritz Lane sounds familiar, there is a reason for that.
Pultar and her family previously ran The Star Hotel in Newcastle where they named the pub’s laneway Spritz Lane, which became popular for its afternoon live jazz music sessions and specialty cocktail list of spritzers.
It’s a name that stuck when Pultar found herself wondering which path she should take next after the pub closed permanently in March 2020 due to the pandemic.
“Our laneway at The Star was called Spritz Lane and that was my baby,” she says.
“When we closed, I couldn’t let go of the name.
“There was something about it”.
“When I would share the idea for the business with friends and family, they would say ‘Why don’t you just call it Spritz Lane?”.
“I thought ‘Yeah, actually, it works’.
“I still have the Spritz Lane lightbox from the laneway, so that will be hanging up in the shop when we open.”