What used to be a pouch used to carry necessities has evolved into a major fashion statement used to carry more fashion and everyday essentials. It is sometimes a status symbol, and honestly it always has been. In fact, did you know Louis Vuitton has been around since 1854? Whether you consider your purse a necessary accessory or just a frivolous bag, the history of the whole handbag is intriguing.
1800-1920s: This is when a more modern handbag came about. People began to travel, so the need for different bags and cases was greater. Louis Vuitton designed a travel case that was durable yet fashionable with the wealthy class. The modern handbag was first small suitcases before it evolved into what we know now. Brand names like Prada and Hermes came about in this time to create what we know as the designer handbag.
The 1920s brought about the clutch, and it became very popular among women wanting to be taken seriously. The 30s and 40s brought about novelty bags, although clutches were still popular. Purses were made into different shapes and styles, whether it was an animal or a particular object. These gave way to a more sturdy and industrial look to the designers in Europe once World War II rolled around. They were simple and useful and made out of any materials that could be found. In America, however, large suede and crocodile bags were popular during war time.
1945-1960s: European designers began making couture handbags. Designer bags became all the rage, including styles from CoCo Chanel and Hermes. In fact Grace Kelly carried a Hermes bag, which is why it is name the Hermes Kelly bag to this day. It showed an air of elegance and sophistication.
1960-1970s: The status of a woman was determined by the bag she was carrying. Fashion was big in the 60s, and handbags were fun and quirky for the younger crowd. Bold prints and odd materials were used in designing purses and were made to cater towards all social statuses. Of course, hippies loved the cross-shoulder bag because it allowed more freedom.
1980-2000s: Designer handbags, backpacks, big bags were the name of the game. Business women carried bags to represent their drive in the marketplace. The bag called the Baguette was also around and named because it fit under a woman’s arm like a loaf of bread.
2000-now: Handbags are true fashion statements. You have a purse for every season in any color you can imagine! Even those with low budgets tend to spend a lot of money to have a certain logo on their purse.
Purses have been around for centuries, but their use has changed over time. Whether you have the “it” bag of the season or an old trusty stand-by, the fact is that every woman carries one in some form or another. Besides, it’s what’s on the inside that counts, right?
Inspired by Elizabeth