In 2022, no fad has taken up quite as strongly as the almost universal desire to acquire a luxury handbag. Each year comes a new set of trends and designs, yet certain premium fashion brands (read: Prada, Dior, and Coach) routinely sell out of almost every bag they issue.
Take, for example, the popularity of Prada's Cleo handbag, which is a wonderful example of our renewed infatuation with retro trends. With its brushed leather surface and stiff yet soft form, the design is clearly inspired by historical trends and pays homage to the 1990s. Of course, its debut at the SS22 Miuccia Prada x Raf Simons show spawned a slew of knockoffs, but a designer bag is nothing without the brand insignia, which means consumers are willing to pay for it.
It's unclear how or why the return of designer handbags is more significant now than ever before, but Gen Z's aggregate purchasing power is driving these premium labels deeper into the mainstream. Whatever the cause, these investment items are making a comeback in a big manner, becoming more timeless in character and appealing to a wider spectrum of customers.
Our fascination has surely been fueled by popular culture, with last year's Sex And The City revival reminding everyone of Carrie Bradshaw's love of designer labels. As a result, searches for specific historical styles such as the Lady Dior and Fendi Baguette increased, with more consumers eager to buy into the nostalgic Y2K aesthetic that saw every shoulder bag adorned with a distinctive brand. The Dior Saddlebag, with its trademark D letter hardware dangling from the centre, has also become quite popular.
One thing is certain: our love of handbags from historical companies isn't going away anytime soon. Marie Claire's edit of the designer handbags that have been dominating the shoulders of everyone who's anyone can be found below.