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Vintage Designer Handbags

The perfect handbag.  An expression of very personal taste no other accessory has the ability to make such a style statement on its own.  The perfect handbag is something we buy for ourselves. It may follow your style but it is always bought for your sole enjoyment (and possibly to inspire a little envy in others!)  While we might wear clothes which might, on occasion, increase our allure, a bag is never going to be part of the attraction. We doubt an admirer would ever say: ‘she had a lovely smile, great hair and the most beautiful bag’!  But this does not diminish the importance we place on the handbags in our lives or the way we want to wear them day to day, (with or without admirers.)  Handbags in the 20th century also importantly represent a woman’s independent life outside the home. 

Over the 20th century women in the public eye have had their names inextricably linked to iconic bags.  As an expression of their style and characters, they have been part of famous photographs of these women which are still admired today for their timeless style.  Hermès is a brand which has most famously associated its creations with their wearers.  Famously, the 1930s ‘Sac à dépêches’, a popular forerunner of the vintage box bags of later decades, was worn by Grace Kelly in Hitchcock’s ‘To Catch and Thief’ in 1954 and later used by the Princess to hide her baby bump, eventually rechristened the ‘Kelly’ bag in 1977.  And what bag could be better known than the bag which still stands at the very top of the luxury handbag market: The Birkin.  So named after actress Jane Birkin who, in 1983, on a flight from Paris to London bemoaned the lack of good leather weekend bags to the then Hermès chief executive Jean-Louis Dumas.  Dumas went on to adapt a 1982 bag in black leather and the Birkin was born.

However, not every vintage bag has to be a vintage designer bag.  Unknown masters of the art from the past 100 years have created handbags synonymous of their era and which not only chart the progression of vintage handbags through the century but also still maintain timeless style, elegance or charm and can be all the better for the mild patina their age has afforded them.  You can find simple form and function of the 1940s when, in post war Britain, Vogue encouraged readers to spend wisely and ‘chose large important bags and good shoes and gloves.’ Through early flap bags called ‘swing bags’ of the  1950s, patent leather and plastic creations of the 1960s, suede, applique and saddle bags of 1970s and beyond.  Vintage handbags continue to inspire current designers and, when a design is perfect, those styles never go out.  Find your perfect vintage designer bag from the Open for Vintage collection.

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Chanel Blue Lambskin with Nylon Gripoix Accessories Pattern Tassel Shoulder Bag

Vintage 80s Chanel blue lambskin with nylon gripoix accessories pattern tassel shoulder bag

Chanel Burgundy Velvet Kiss Lock Shoulder Bag

Vintage 80s Chanel burgundy velvet gold chain shoulder bag.

Escada Black Leather Gold Dices Flap Handbag

Vintage 80s Escada black leather gold dice flap handbag.

Iconic Chanel 1999 Wool "Millenium 2005" Bag

Reallyy nice and iconic of a period the bag Millenium fom the 1999 runway fom Chanel.

Yves Saint Laurent YSL Black Silk Satin Ribbon Bow Evening Bag

YSL black silk ribbon evening bag in excellent condition

Gucci Beige Monogram and Leather Mayfair Tote Shoulder Bag

Gucci Mayfair tote in very good condition.

Louis Vuitton Kendall PM Dark Green Taiga Leather Travel Bag & Strap

Authentic Louis Vuitton Kendall taiga leather travel bag

Vintage Louis Vuitton Keepall 45 Green Epi Leather Duffle Travel Bag

Authentic Louis Vuitton Keepall 45 in Epi leather.

1930s Black Silk Embroidered Evening Clutch Bag

1930s Black Silk Embroidered Evening Clutch

Mui Mui Green Canvas with White Polka Dot Tote Bag

This Mui Mui white polka dot tote bag features a green canvas body, rolled leather straps, open top with button clasp closure, and interior zip and slip pocket.

Gucci Black Suede Bamboo Backpack

This Gucci backpack features a suede body with leather trim, front exterior flap pocket with twist bamboo closure, adjustable leather shoulder straps, drawstring closure, and interior zip pocket.

Vintage Louis Vuitton Alma Red Epi Leather Hand Bag

Authentic Louis Vuitton Alma bag in Epi leather.

Very Rare Chanel Magenta Velvet Extra Mini Classic Boy Flap Shoulder Bag

Chanel magenta velvet extra mini boy bag classic in excellent condition.

Chanel Pink Patent Leather CC Logo Mini Pouch Crossbody Shoulder Bag

Chanel pink patent leather mini pouch cross body in excellent condition.

Rare Chanel Quilted Black Leather Gem Logo Closure Classic Flap Shoulder Bag

Chanel black leather gem logo closure classic flap shoulder bag in excellent condition.

Chanel Navy Blue Leather Pearl Trim Classic Flap Shoulder Bag

Chanel navy blue leather pearl trim classic flap shoulder bag in excellent condition.

Rare Louis Vuitton Tahitienne Cabas PM White Leather & Purple Cotton Tote Handbag

Authentic Louis Vuitton Tahitienne Cabas  PM tote bag in white & purple monogram cotton.

Vintage Louis Vuitton Lussac Green Epi Leather Large Shoulder Bag

Authentic Louis Vuitton Lussac Epi Leather shoulder bag.

Balenciaga Beige Leather Motocross Giant Day Shoulder Bag

This Balenciaga Motocross Giant Day features a beige leather body, silver-tone hardware studs, a rolled handle, an exterior zip pocket, a top zip closure, and an interior zip pocket

Louis Vuitton Orange Epi Pochette Accessoires 24 Handbag

These year 2003 Louis Vuitton Pochette accessories 24 handbag features an epi leather body, a detachable shoulder strap, and a top zip closure.
£383.11 £395.00

Gucci GG Pattern Shell Form Micro Chain Gold Shoulder Bag

Made in Italy With box
£720.00 £770.00

Chanel Cotton Stripe Pattern Blue & White Shoulder Bag

Size : H 20cm — W 39cm — D 12cm Shoulder 70cm
£460.00 £550.00

Chanel Matelasse Plate Black & White Chain Shoulder Bag

Size : H 17cm x W 26cm x D 7cm Chain: Double Chain: 47cm Single Chain: 80cm
£1,490.00 £1,610.00

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