5 Iconic Handbags in Honor of National Handbag Day

In honor of National Handbag Day (which was marked yesterday), Carmel + Vanilla presents 5 of the most iconic handbags in history.

The Hermes “Kelly”:

Possibly one of the most iconic handbags of all time, this sublime piece was first introduced in the 1930s. The bag’s original name was changed to the “Kelly” in 1956, soon after Princess Grace of Monaco was spotted holding it to shield her pregnancy away from the prying eyes of paparazzi. This Hermes icon is one of the first truly modern bags and is considered by many as the “ideal day bag”. Want to own one? Then you better start saving! The Kelly’s starting price is USD 4,000 and goes all the way up to USD 16,000!


USA Kelly Rainier Engagement
Princess Grace of Monaco photographed with the Hermes “Kelly” bag.



The “Chanel 2.55 Flap Bag”:

Generally labeled as way ahead of her time, Coco Chanel didn’t want to carry a bag by hand anymore and created the strap instead. This accessory accompanied the introduction of the Chanel 2.55 Flap Bag in 1955. This iconic bag provides instant sophistication and poise and can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. These days, this high-end piece is available in a variety of colors and retails at a starting price of USD 2,700.

Fun Fact! Rumor has it that the bag’s zip compartment was used by Coco Chanel to hide her love letters.



The Hermes “Birkin”:

Hermes makes the list again with the signature “Birkin” bag that was first introduced in 1981. Inspired and named after singer Jane Birkin, this iconic bag is similar to the “Kelly”, but larger in size. Want to include it to your wardrobe? Well brace yourself; the waiting list to own a Birkin is up to SIX years! A new Birkin will set you USD 13,000 back, while a pre-owned one retails for about USD 10,000.




Jane Birkin poses with the Hermes "Birkin" bag
Jane Birkin poses with the Hermes “Birkin” bag


The Dior “Lady Dior Cannage Tote”:

While on a trip to Paris in the 90s, the late Princess Diana fell in love with this handbag. Since then, this iconic bag became known as “Lady D” or “Lady Dior”. “Cannage” refers to the type of stitching that makes the bag look the way it does. Today, Dior introduced a smaller sized version of Lady Dior and added a shoulder strap for better support. The massive French house’s iconic bag retails for about USD 2,500. French actress Marion Cotillard is the face of Lady Dior.


Princess Diana took her Lady Dior everywhere!
Princess Diana took her Lady Dior everywhere!

lady dior bag




The Louis Vuitton “Speedy”:

Though introduced in the 1930s, the Louis Vuitton “Speedy 30″ had a surprisingly youthful look and is still widely popular nowadays. The bag is also known to be reliable for travel and is widely accepted as an “affordable” luxury item. Starting price is around USD 1,000 although special editions can cost up to USD 2,500.


speedy 30

Audrey Hepburn poses with her customized Louis Vuitton Speedy
Audrey Hepburn poses with her customized Louis Vuitton Speedy

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