As a timeless classic, meticulously designed by the legendary Coco Chanel in 1929, the quilted Chanel handbag continues to dominate the fashion world today. From the fashion-savvy to the cool hipster, the quilted Chanel is an essential bag for every girl’s dream collection of handbags.
The iconic, luxury leather handbag was inspired by Coco’s love of horse-riding and persistent annoyance with carrying purses; she famously said: ‘I got fed up with holding my purses in my hands and losing them, so I added a strap and carried it over my shoulder’ - Something many girls adhere to today.
Chanel was a ruler of the fashion world back in her heyday and remains so in today’s fashion scene, with instantly recognisable, feminine designs in a variety of soft and luxurious fabrics and finishes. The quilted Chanel handbags feature rich materials such as lamb’s leather, to ensure maximum durability and longevity; the originals still being in circulation and accessible for today’s fashionistas, is a testament to this quality.
Fabrics are hand-cut to perfection and delicately stitched by machines used exclusively by the highest-skilled. The workers responsible for the birth of each addition to the collection undergo 4-5 years of training.
The original designs are lined in a rich shade of burgundy, a throwback to Chanel’s youth and the uniform worn to Catholic school. Each fine detail and aspect of the bag is taken from highlights of Coco Chanel’s life. The front zip compartment is rumoured to have been created as a place to store love letters she would receive; the lock front was named the ‘Mademoiselle Lock’ in reference to Chanel never marrying and the chain and leather straps are inspired by the bags used by soldiers.
The two most popular styles of the quilted Chanel are the classic flap front, featuring all of the recognisable finishes of the original and the 2.55. The 2.55 edition redesigned after Coco Chanel’s dramatic comeback to the fashion industry, was introduced in February 1955 and made a huge impact on the fashion world.
The quilted Chanel bags are famous for their unique diamond pattern, created by intricate stitching. This was used to give the bag subtle design and added volume, inspired by the riding coats of jockeys. Since production, there have been several variations of the classic quilted design; featuring an array of fabrics and alternative locks to the front. However, each creation always remains true to its routes, paying homage to the romanticised memories and inspirations behind the original piece.
The effect the quilted design has had on the industry is something revolutionary and no bag collection is complete without an original Chanel. Whether you marry into the history of the bag or simply want to add a stylish addition to your vintage collection, just remember: ‘fashion goes out of fashion, style never does’ - Coco Chanel.
We have hand-selected some of the most stunning vintage Chanel quilted bags to enable you the chance to own a piece of history. The gentle use of these bags means that they are as good as new, each carrying their own unique story and ready for you to cherish.