Showing 73–96 of 99 results

Showing 73–96 of 99 results

Fashion changes, Chanel endures

Nothing says timeless like a Chanel 2.55 bag. Having become an indispensable accessory for any woman who considers herself a true devotee of fashion, the Chanel 2.55 has influenced fashionistas everywhere. At the same time, this vintage handbag holds hints of the life and times of the woman that created it. February 1955 — the year the bag was released — is a classic vintage of high quality couture, the most recognisable feature being its quilted leather exterior — a popular design found on the jackets of male stable boys. At the time of design, Chanel was having an affair with Boy Capel, a reputable polo player who also financed her first shops. In return, the bag was named after her lover. The rich burgundy colour of the lining of the boy bag also alludes to a momentous time in the designer’s life, as the convent where Chanel grew up enforced burgundy uniforms.

A history of intrepidity in a Chanel bag

Having lived through World War II and seen the soldiers valiantly carrying their bags over their shoulders, Chanel had the idea of adding a single thin strap to the classic clutch. She herself had become tired of the inconvenience of holding her purse, and it was becoming evident that the time of idle hands was drawing to a close for society women. It was a moment of innovative brilliance that changed the direction of the fashion world. By keeping in line with the stylings of a petite handbag, she was able to invent a chic accessory that graced a woman’s shoulder. Improving on the open-design of soldiers’ bags, she added a flap and a lock intended to prevent the contents of the bag from spilling out, which came to be known as the mademoiselle lock. The lock was so named because Chanel never married, and in French society “mademoiselle” is the title given to an unmarried lady. In 1981, Karl Lagerfeld —the head director of Chanel at the time — introduced the interlocking C’s to the mademoiselle lock, which today have become a signature of haute couture in the indomitable world of fashion and a love letter to the woman who defined it.

For the love of aesthetic they evoke, and the high-quality material from which they’re made, these second-hand Chanel bags unite in a single object the entire intrepid history of the fashion titan from which they hail.