Paris is the capital city of fashion, therefore French handbags are some of the finest, most exquisite and most expensive bags in the world. Our list of the most famous French handbag manufacturers could not be complete without the biggest fashion houses, but we have also included a mid-priced French brand, which is becoming more and more popular these days.
One of the most influential fashion brands in the world. Established in 1909 by Coco Chanel, the brand thrived under Karl Lagerfeld’s supervision. Chanel is an expert in clutch fashion and small French handbags. The most famous creation of the brand is the 1955 Chanel 2.55, designed by Coco herself. The addition of the chain and the quilted design of the bag revolutionized fashion in the 1950s when women used to carry only not-so-convenient handbags. When Karl Lagerfeld took over the brand in 1983, he reissued the 2.55 bag and added a clasp with the famous brand logo.
In the world of handbags, Hermes embodies perfection and chic. Hermes Birkin bag is the most famous and most coveted bag in the world. No less popular is Hermes bag from the 1930s named the Kelly, after Grace Kelly, who in 1956 carried a few different models of the bag. If that was not enough, Hermes launched another iconic celebrity favorite bag in 1959. The bag was named Constance and was the favorite bag of Jackie Kennedy Onasis. In 2012 the most popular and most often searched for Hermes’ bag was the Victoria II bag, smaller and less expensive than the Birkin bag.
The most often copied and one of the most valuable French luxury brands. Louis Vuitton started to retail bags in 1854 and from the beginning, the brand specialized in traveling bags. Although currently Louis Vuitton sells also handbags, cross-body bags, clutches and bags for notebooks, traveling bags are still the brand’s forte. The most famous model of Louis Vuitton bag is Speedy, a small carry-on bag perfect for short trips. Created in 1932, Speedy was Louis Vuitton’s first handbag and first luxury bag. The bag was famously adored by Audrey Hepburn, who was often photographed with the bag and ordered a smaller model of the bag designed specifically for her. After a makeover, the bag was reintroduced in 1997 by Marc Jacobs, Creative Director of Louis Vuitton brand.
While other famous French brands, such as Dior, YSL, Celine or Chloe, specialize in French handbags with a price tag of $1,000 minimum, Longchamp caters to customers, who want to spend less than $200 on a bag! Longchamp’s most famous product – Le Pliage – is a cool, affordable traveling bag, popular among dozens of celebrities. The foldable vinyl bag with leather trimmings was introduced in 1993. Since then the brand has gained much popularity and in 2011 was the fifth most popular handbag brand in the world and the number one most often talked about brand in France. The Pliage bag has also been reinvented by designers, such as Thomas Heatherwick (the zip bag), Jeremy Scott, and model Kate Moss, who in 2010 created her first collection for Longchamp.
Much like the latest home trends, the fashion industry is forever changing to wow their customers. What are some of your favorite designer handbags?