When it comes to luxury handbags, it seems that practicality has become key. Say goodbye to mini bags, and enter bowling bags, crossbody bags and bags with a pop of colour and an eye-catching shape. Think triangle, square and even heart shape.
When was Paris fashion week?
Paris fashion week happened extremely recently, from the 27 September to the 5 October. It usually takes place this week most years. Some of the standout shows were left until the final day though, and that includes Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Miu Miu.
Why is fashion week so iconic?
Paris is said to be the centre of fashion, built on the very idea of luxury and theatricals, so it won’t come as a surprise that one of the fashion weeks is set there every year. But, although it’s always been the home of luxury brands like Chanel and Christian Dior, Paris fashion week wasn’t always so established.
The concept of designers showing their clothes and accessories on a catwalk in real life is still a relatively modern concept. Originally thought of by Charles Worth in the late nineteenth century, and Paul Poiret in the early twentieth century, the catwalk was created to blend both designers’ innovation and ordinary people. During the 1920s and 1930s, fashion shows were a private affair, as only customers of specific designers were invited – no celebrities could be seen watching. This was to prevent any other designers from stealing original ideas. Unlike today, photographs were certainly not allowed into the venues.
When New York came onto the fashion scene and threatened Paris with its new designers, Paris-based brands knew that they had to do something bigger to top competition. Enter Thierry Mugler’s 1984 extravaganza show and Jean-Paul Gaultier’s unique conical bra.
The trends to watch out for
Fashion weeks are a great place for trends to be started, continued and put a stop to. The most recent Paris fashion week was for the season of Spring/Summer 2022, so to get ahead of the game, make sure that you’re watching out for these luxury bag trends in the new year.
Shoulder bags are still in
It looks like the shoulder bag trend is not going anywhere soon. It’s dominated the runways for about two years now, and like the previous years, it was spotted time after time at Paris fashion week. As Prada always does, they led the way for shoulder bags, as a bright red version stole the show.
Most of us know what the iconic Chanel Flap handbag looks like, however, we may not consider it to be in the shape of a heart. Chanel debuted their iconic quilted design (that you would associate with the Flap bag) and gold chain bag, this time in the shape of a heart. It’s not only the shape that is reminiscent of the 1990s though. They chose to show it in a bright pink colour, which at first glance, made quite the impression.
Other designers opted for heart-shaped bags on the catwalk, Lanvin debuted a sparkly red, white and blue heart-shaped bag which would make for the perfect elegant evening accessory.
Shoulder bags are certainly a nod to the early 2000s, however so are bowling bags. We haven’t seen bowling bags on the catwalk for a few years now, but it looks like they may be making their comeback. Christian Dior designed a bowling bag that mixes both elegance and sport – a combination that most designers would struggle to perfect. It’s fair to say that Christian Dior pulled off the challenge perfectly as they debuted a royal blue bowling bag with white racing stripes, which was adorned with the iconic Christian Dior logo.
Again, other designers opted for similar bag shapes, however, Louis Vuitton’s bowling bag was less bold and had more of a timeless feel.
This is yet another new shape of bag that will excite buyers, and that is the cylinder bag. Sometimes dubbed as similar to a pencil case, the cylinder bag offers a new spin on the baguette bags that we saw trending last year. It was seen on the runways of Hermès and Isabel Marant, giving another nod to the iconic early 2000s.
It will probably come as no surprise that Chanel led the show with this one. Crossbody bags have been a popular style for decades, so only simple tweaks to their original designs are likely to be popular with buyers. Chanel sent a crossbody covered in black beads and pearls down the runway in a monochromatic look.
The ‘everyday’ aesthetic and XL totes
The Covid pandemic has certainly taught designers one thing, and that is that people want practicality within their luxury accessories. Unfortunately, this does mean that we’re probably seeing the end of the micro bag trend. Designers like Max Mara and Versace all sent XL totes down their runways at Paris fashion week. Most of these tote bags were big enough to use as an overnight bag and had a casual and slouchy design to them. This fits in with the ‘everyday’ aesthetic that some buyers are looking for in a luxury handbag. Max Mara’s slouchy pastel yellow XL tote was one of the most practical looks we’ve seen on the runway for some time.
Fashion week predicts all of the big trends
We don’t have a crystal ball, however, fashion week is known to set the tone for the coming season and predict what will be hot and what will not. The best way to keep ahead of everyone else in the fashion world is to follow fashion weeks closely. We can guess that Spring/Summer 2022 will put fun-shaped bags in the spotlight, and practicality will still remain a key feature of most designers’ accessories. If you are thinking of buying a luxury handbag now, the shoulder bag looks like it will remain a timeless piece for a couple more seasons.