Buying your first luxury handbag is a memorable experience for any girl who loves designer accessories. For those of us who have been there, the excitement of finally getting your hands on the bag you've wanted and saved up for is one of the most rewarding feelings. Let's be honest, we all kept the bag's website link open on our computers so we could continuously lust over it. So when the day finally came, where you could walk into the shop, try it on for the millionth time and actually leave with it in your possession, nothing felt more gratifying.
The monster is usually born after that first exhilarating feeling of finally purchasing your dream bag, at least for most of us. To all the girls that live paycheque to paycheque just to feed your handbag obsession, we feel you and we support you - and to be fair, there are worse things in this world to be addicted to.
The commencing piece to your collection is an extremely important decision. A lot of research, consideration and reasoning is required before settling on the one. What style suits you best? What is the best brand to start with? Is it going to be worth anything down the line? Do you want something versatile that can serve more than one purpose? These are several factors one must take into account. So, to all the girls this blogpost applies to, take a deep breath, stop panicking and keep reading. We're here to help you out in your decision making by giving you a few good options to consider.
Chanel Classic Flap
I mean, we all need one at some point. Point blank. Not only is the Chanel Classic Flap one of the most coveted bags in fashion history (and with good reason) but it is also one of the best bags to invest in. Classics are well, classics, for a reason. A brand rich in history, Chanel embodies the definition of genuine luxury and elegence.
The Classic Flap is actually a re-designed version of the very first Chanel bag, the 2.55. Originally created by Coco Chanel in 1929 but released in February 1955, the flap bag with a double-chain strap and mademoiselle clasp was designed for practical purposes. Coco was fed up with handheld accessories, so like any innovative woman, she took matters into her own hands (pun intended) and designed a bag she could wear over her shoulder. When current creative director Karl Lagerfeld took the brand's creative reigns in 1983, he redesigned the 2.55 to include the now-signature CC twist-lock clasp.
The Classic Flap is most commonly crafted from lambskin or caviar leather, with the traditional colours being black and beige. If you choose to invest in a Classic Flap, we recommend going with caviar leather since it is the more durable of the two. Though lambskin leather is chic and smooth, it is far more delicate than caviar and scratches very easily. If you're going to be dropping a fortune a handbag, you want to get your money's worth. Caviar leather is strong, durable and doesn't scratch easily due to its grained effect.
To say the least, the Classic Flap is a bag that you will never fall out of love with. It's not one of those pieces you'll wear the hell out of and then bury it deep in your closet a few years later; it's an investment piece that will never go out of style. It's a bag you can pass down to your daughter, who can pass it down to her daughter and so forth. Is there really a better starting piece to your luxury handbag collection?
Céline Luggage Tote
Okay, so we know we said that it might be difficult to top the Classic Flap, but not all of us can manage to save £4k. The Céline Luggage tote is the ideal luxury-starter handbag that won't completely break your bank. If you're the kind of woman with a love for understated glamour, then Céline (and yes we mean CÉline) is your kind of brand. Designed for the modern woman with sleek, sophisticated style, Phoebe Philo's Céline redefined the notion of traditional femininity. Not to mention, her knack for revamping fashion houses that were falling off the radar into It-brands is incomparable. She did it at Chloé with Padlock bag that instantly took the fashion lovers of the world by storm and then again at Céline with the Luggage collection.
The Luggage tote is a timeless piece that will remain fashionable forever. With its signature front piping and distinct style, the Luggage tote is recognizable without an obvious logo. Discreet and elegant, the Luggage tote is also a good investment now more than ever since the debut of Hedi Slimane's collection for the brand. According to the Business of Fashion, there has been a whopping increase in searches for Celine following Slimane's collection at Paris Fashion Week. Purchases for classic bags and specific Philo designs have significantly increased, especially in the reselling market.
The Luggage tote is definitely an investment piece that you won't regret, especially if you're a fan of Phoebe. A diverse piece that is suitable for any occasion, the Luggage tote is available in several different sizes that each serve a different purpose. Whether you're travelling, running errands, or dressing up for cocktails with your girlfriends, there is a Luggage tote for you.
Dior Lady Dior
The holy grail of Dior bags, the Lady Dior is more or less the Dior equivalent to the Chanel Classic Flap. Originally inspired by Napoléan ||| chairs that Christian Dior once used to welcome his clients to his first show in 1947, the Lady Dior is another signature piece with a fascinating backstory. It was first gifted to Princess Diana in 1995 upon a trip to Paris from Bernadette Chirac, wife of former French President Jacques Chirac. The Lady Dior was seen countless times on the Princess' arm, once during a visit to a children's home in Birmingham when a photograph was captured of her holding a child. A few weeks later, the bag was seen again when she attended a state visit in Argentina. Beloved by both the Princess and by the public, there was such high demand for the bag that it was released in stores the following year with the name "Lady Dior," with the Princess' blessing. More than 200,000 models were sold in the first two years of its debut, massively increasing Dior's turnover.
A house classic, the Lady Dior is simply legendary. Traditional and elegant, you can't go wrong with investing in this bag. If you're the kind of woman with a love for all things feminine, then the Lady Dior is your best bet. With its signature cannage quilting and Dior logo charms, this iconic piece is one that won't lose its value or its high status. Anyone with a relative knowledge in fashion knows that Dior is a fashion house that will always remain at the top of the luxury hierarchy, along with Chanel and Hermès. Investing in classics from any of these brands is always a good idea and one you won't regret.
Louis Vuitton Alma
We all know and love the Louis Vuitton Speedy, perhaps the most iconic bag from the French fashion house, but is it really the most practical? We're all for investing in timepieces, however the Speedy just doesn't do it for us when it comes to versatility - but the Alma does. Though it's not as acclaimed as the Speedy, the Alma is still a house classic that can serve multiple purposes for multiple occasions.
Designed by Gaston Louis - Vuitton in 1934, rumour has it that the first ever Alma was originally made for Coco Chanel as a custom order. We like to believe that this is the case because, well, think about it; two legendary French fashion designers doing friendly business together - we love it. The bag was also named after the Alma Bridge in Paris that expands across the River Seine.
Available in numerous different sizes from BB to XXL, the classic Alma is usually depicted in Louis Vuitton's signature Monogram and Damier Ebene canvases. It's also been presented in pretty much every colour of the rainbow in Epi and patent leather, as well as being emblemed with Takashi Murakami characters and graffiti by Stephen Spouse. Regardless of the different colours and themes featured throughout the years, the Alma's style remains a classic that will never go out of style. A timepiece you won't regret, the Alma is that one bag you'll use every day for any occasion. Not to mention, it's extremely well priced with the BB commencing at £1360. A bag that will remain your ultimate companion for years and years, the Alma is a bag every woman should have in her luxury handbag collection.
Saint Laurent Sac de Jour
Not only is the SDJ one of the most iconic bags from Saint Laurent, it is also the most discreet and understated. Designed by Hedi Slimane during his Saint Laurent days, the Sac de Jour made its debut in the brand's Fall / Winter 2013-2014 collection. Acclaimed for his grungy, heroine-chic aesthetic, Slimane created a range of edgy products designed for neo-punks everywhere. Though the SDJ doesn't drift far from his rock n' roll vibes, it is definitely suitable for every kind of woman no matter what style you have.
Recognized by its classic silhouette, the Sac de Jour is undoubtedly one of those bags that you can use from day to night. Available in sizes including the Nano, Baby and Small, the SDJ is available in several different leathers and colours. Suitable for pretty much any occasion imaginable, this bag is an investment piece due to the fact that it's one of those bags that you'll have forever. It's that go-to piece you don't have to think about; dinner and drinks with your girlfriends? Sac de Jour. Running a million errands? Sac de Jour. Hungover Sunday brunch? Sac de Jour. You get the point. The fact of it is, the SDJ is a bag you just simply need in your life. Trust us, you can thank us later.
So how do you feel? A little less stressed, we hope. At the end of the day, this is your bag and it has to reflect you, your life and your needs. No matter which one you end up purchasing, make sure it's one you won't regret. Don't invest in something you'll get bored of, or one that isn't suited to you. Think long and hard and make sure you're confident in your decision. Whichever one you go for, we're sure you'll rock it either way. ;)