With a growing emphasis on investment fashion that can be passed down from generation to generation, designers seemingly spent lockdown dreaming up new forever pieces for spring/summer 2021. There was a flurry of new handbags—one of the items that has historically increased in value over time—on show, as brands doubled down on the craftsmanship and heritage at their core. From the teeny tiny iterations of Chanel’s classic 2.55 to Louis Vuitton’s new hard-edged version of the house’s signature monogrammed styles, updates on timeless handbags abounded in Paris. Elsewhere, new models, including Matthew Williams’s cult-in-the-making Cut-Out, are destined for sell-out success. Bookmark the below quickly and start saving now.
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The Hermès Perspective Cavalière
The asymmetrical design of the Hermès Perspective Cavalière bag nods to the method of “isometric perspective” developed by French cartographers and engineers in the 16th-century, which allowed them to represent three-dimensional objects on paper. The neat, surprisingly capacious bag shape comes in two sizes and a smorgasbord of delectable colours.
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The Dior boho Bobby
The Dior Bobby bag, introduced by current creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri for autumn/winter 2020 as a tribute to Monsieur Dior’s beloved dog, has come over all bohemian for spring/summer 2021. Hand-embroidered with Mediterranean prints or realised in printed tan leather, with striking logoed straps to make street-stylers salivate, the new-season iteration is a riotous addition to Dior’s accessory offering.
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The Chanel micro 2.55
Chanel 2.55 bag fans who haven’t committed to investing in one of the quilted styles rejoiced at the sight of multiple mini flap bags on the spring/summer 2021 runway. Strung on belts and swinging jauntily at models’ hips, suspended on pearl and chain necklaces, and dangling from metallic bangles, these Polly Pocket-sized bags will be the new entry-point accessory for the house next season.
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The Louis Vuitton Chroma Key
The trio-pouch Chroma Key is just one of a number of Louis Vuitton handbags Nicolas Ghesquière sent down the spring/summer 2021 runway. The malleable-looking monogrammed shoulder bag could teeter into emotional support pouch territory were it not for the chunky silver chain handle that means business. Sling it over the shoulder of an oversized trench – à la Vuitton’s show styling – to look like a true Parisienne on-the-go.
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The Valentino Roman Stud
To complement the return of the iconic Rockstud pump, Valentino introduced the Roman Stud handbag, “a dialogue between classic design and punk subculture”. Created in plush leather and punctuated with hand-applied metallic pyramid accents, which are inspired by the notches on Roman doors, consider this the new edgy-meets-elegant house classic.
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The Loewe Shell Tote
Jonathan Anderson’s most coveted accessories are always rooted in the progressive and unique craftsmanship that inspires him. Enter the Perforated Shell Tote, realised in classic calfskin, but inspired by the work of 19th-century ceramicist George Ohr, who explored the idea of building dimples in clay to create volumes. Name a more apt seaside tote (other than Loewe’s woven basket bags, of course).
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The Givenchy Cut-Out
Matthew Williams’s debut Givenchy show saw the Alyx designer rework the Antigone, an existing house favourite, with his pretty-tough hardware. But the most striking handbags were the endless variations of the new Cut-Out style featuring heavy chains and padlocks, the latter being a new house symbol representing “love and interconnectedness and [Williams’s] commitment to Givenchy”.
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The Chloé Kiss
Chloé’s Daria bag comes stamped with the silkscreen word art of Corita Kent, the “pop art nun” and unexpected muse of the season. While fashionistas who love their cult handbags with a referential back story will be swinging their Darias next season, classic Chloé girls will undoubtedly fall for the charms of the new petite yet perfectly formed Kiss bag.
This article was originally published on British Vogue.