Like the people who carry them, these special bags have a repeat audience. Here’s a mix of iconic styles that have made cameos in new collections and recent favorites that are predicted to become mainstays.
Three things give Chanel visual recall: the overlapping C’s, tweed, and the quilted surface of Chanel 2.55. This bag has influenced a lot of copies but has never wavered in the price department. A rare edition is an auction piece that fetches more than what the owner got it for.
Famous details: Coco Chanel fashioned 2.55 to be a more functional clutch. She added a strap that is whispered to be linked to her childhood, which had horses in harnesses and nuns in belts.
This classic Hermès had a serendipitous start. Actress Jane Birkin and Jean-Louis Dumas of Hermes were seatmates on a plane. During the flight, Birkin talked about how some bags don’t have enough pockets. Dumas suggested the design of a new one—what would become the spacious Birkin.
Famous details: The bag has a front flap similar to a letter envelope and a tiny padlock that ties two leather strips together.
Famous details: This cuboid bag is like pieces of a big puzzle strewn together. The edges of each “puzzle piece” is made more prominent by hand-painted edges.
Louis Vuitton Speedy
Famous details: The Speedy has the cubic shape of a doctor’s bag. Its surface has the Louis Vuitton monogram.
Bottega Veneta Intrecciato
Famous details: The chunky shape, big padlock, and visible stitching are hard to miss.
The Lady Dior bag first came out as “Chouchou” (which means favorite) and was renamed after Princess Diana, who carried the bag everywhere. Naturally, the bag had a big moment, having been photographed on the arm of the most idolized woman of the ’90s.
Famous details: Embossed leather and geometric striations are standout features. Today’s versions may be personalized with various charms.