history of handbags, part 3

Imagine you’re a stylish Edwardian lady, and you’ve been invited to a friend’s country estate for the weekend. Knowing that you’re going to need a different outfit for every “event” for three days – at least six a day – you’re going to need a lot of luggage. What to do? Well, being as stylish as you are, you’re going to do what the French do:

…and stock up on handmade luggage from Louis Vuitton, who has his logo handpainted on to every peice. And you know what would be really handy to have on the train and on the dusty roads en route to your friend’s estate? Certainly not a frilly, fussy little reticule. While beautiful and precious, they are hardly built for the rigors of cross country travel. What you need is a nice, sturdy leather bag with a handle and a lock.

This is a modern bag (the “speedy”), of course, but it’s based on the legendary Keep-all, one of the first pieces of luggage from Louis Vuitton that wasn’t a trunk. And so began the lust for leather in ladies’ accessories. From this point onward, the history of handbags is infused with varieties in styles and materials that were unimaginable beforehand. Until next time!


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