Handbag Week! Day 2

Our week of handbags is progressing in chronological order; with today’s examples being manufactured between 1908 and 1939, although the iconic Kelly bag is still made (by hand) by Hermès to this day. And look, a nod to Olympic fever, in time for this year’s London games! Clicking on any image will bring up a somewhat larger view for detail study.

Silver and leather bag with decorative spider “spinning” an egraved web, Russia, 1908-1917
Beaded handbag made by a 14-year-old girl during the Amsterdam Olympic Games, 1928
Sac à dépêches, Hermès circa 1935 (this example from the late 20th C.)
Enameled minaudière with jeweled clasp that can be worn as a brooch, Asprey, 1939

About that Kelly bag: Introduced in 1935, Hermès’ “Sac à dépêches” is a true classic. Its nickname was adopted in 1956, when Grace Kelly was frequently photographed carrying hers. Popular history says that she used the sizable bag to conceal her pregnancy, but the photos below, taken before her marriage, show that the Sac à dépêches was already a staple in her wardrobe.

Grace Kelly: signing autographs, loading gowns into her car, announcing her engagement to Rainier III, Prince of Monaco.

CREDITS: Purse photography by Jenna Bascom and Ken Music Photography. Photos of Grace Kelly via LIFE magazine. All handbags shown here are from the collection of Tassenmuseum Hendrikje/Museum of Bags and Purses, Amsterdam.

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4 Replies to “Handbag Week! Day 2”

  1. Oh my everloving lord. My kingdom for a Kelly bag. (Of course you could feed a small village for umpteen years for the price of one…)

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    1. I’d settle for a cheap knock-off, but search for “Kelly Bag” online and you get 1,000,000 resellers who think ANY frame purse is a Kelly bag. 😐

      Like

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