When Christian Dior introduced his luxurious New Look in the ‘50s, he established a series of strict fashion rules for women to follow. His 1954 “Little Dictionary of Fashion,” stated, “You can wear the same suit from morning to dinner—but to be really perfectly dressed, you can not keep the same bag. For morning, it must be very simple, and for the evening, it must be smaller and, if you wish, a little more fancy.”

But, according the rules of the era, a “good” simple day bag had to be made of the finest exotic skins like python or ostrich and hand-crafted to the highest degree of quality. The irony being that while Dior was crafting his dresses with billowy full crinoline skirts and tiny waists, he was not that concerned with the handbags himself. When putting a runway look together, it was low on the pecking order in his fashion house.

In fact, it was Dior who introduced the concept of licensing to haute couture. He would farm out handbag production to other luxury good companies, who then benefited from the Midas touch of putting the Dior name on their products.

Decades after Christian Dior’s death, the handbag became an important piece of the Dior collection in 1990s. And in 1995, the fashion house introduced the biggest “it bag” of the 20th century, the Lady Dior. The story goes that Bernadette Chirac, the first lady of France, gave Princess Diana this bag, which featured cannage stitched leather and four charms for each of the letters in DIOR. Lady Di fell in love with the bag and bought one in every style and color. Thanks to her, in the year 1997, 140,000 of these newly dubbed Lady Dior bags sold for $1,200.

Designer John Galliano, with his wildly inventive purses, is largely responsible for the company’s success in the handbag market. His Saddle Bag, which has appear on “Sex and The City,” is shaped like a saddle with C and D charms hanging from miniature leather stirrups. In 2007, he redesign his iconic bag into 12 new styles representing 12 countries—Argentina, Mexico, France, Russia, Morocco, Spain, China, the United States, India, Japan, Egypt and England. Other popular Galliano bags include the Rasta bag, the Samurai, and the Dior 61.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Bag Lady University

Bag Lady University

Bag Lady University is the place to learn about handbag makers from Adrian's, which made Bakelite bags, to Whiting … [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Auth. Christian Dior Lady Dior Baby Blue Quilted Lambskin Tote Handbag W/dustbagChristian Dior Beige Leather Cannage Le Trente Collection Satchel Handbag Christian Dior Lady Dior Small Satchel Black Nylon Christian Dior *vintage* Authentic, Collectible PurseAuth Christian Dior Black Leather Medium Satchel Bowler Handbag EvhbAuthentic Christian Dior Gaucho Beige Large Saddle Shoulder Bag Excellent!!100% Authentic Christian Dior Black Leather Pockets Shoulder Bag$1145 Authentic Dior Leather / Canvas Satchel Bag Authentic Vintage Dior Christian Dior Brown Leather Large Gaucho Saddle BagChristian Dior Authentic Womens Hand Purse Wallet Tri Fold Girls GreenAuth Christian Dior Powder Blue Patent Leather Mini Cross Body Shoulder Handbag Authentic Christian Dior Lambskin Leather Pouch Bag Clutch Case Black Orig $414Authentic Christian Dior Trotter Shoulder BagRare Vintage Christian Dior Purse Trotter Shoulder Bag Red $1200 Christian Dior Black Panarea 2014 Cannage Medium Canvas Shopping Tote BagAuth Vintage Christian Dior Monogram Boston Doctor Speedy Bag Jacquard Tote GucAuthentic Christian Dior Lady Dior Handbag Medium Lamb Leather 9” X 8” X 4100% Authentic Christian Dior Trotter Vintage Boston Hand Bag Brown(z438)Christian Dior Blue Canvas Monogram Gold Tone Saddle Bag Clutch Handbag EvhbChristian Dior Small Kidney Shape Blue Denim Handbag 100% Authentic **no Strap**Christian Dior Dark Brown/black Jacquard Monogram Logo Box Bag Vintage AuthenticHuge Sephora Lot Of 95 Samples W/bonus Tote Dior Kate Somerville Lancome ShiseidAuthentic Christian Dior Gaucho Beige Large Saddle Shoulder Bag Excellent!!Christian Dior Bag Purse Clutch Tote Red Signature Logo Monogram Vtg RareChristian Dior Jean Fish Multi Colored Saddle Bag.100% Authentic Christian Dior Trotter Vintage Canvas Boston Hand Bag(eb69)Christian Dior PurseChristian Dior Earrings & Parfums Toiletry Make Up Travel Bag Black Lever BackChristian Dior HandbagChristian Dior Black Leather Raindrop Embossed Shoulder BagChristian Dior Black Leather "denim Pocket" Handbag - Fabulous - Rare Find!Christian Dior Floral Saddle Bag. Authentic Christian Dior Shoulder Bag Excellent Condition2 Dior Essentials! Mini Lipstick And Beautiful Purse-sized Mirror In CaseChristian Dior Vintage Boston Speedy Trotter Brown Leather Canvas SatchelChristian Dior Quilted Leather BagAuthentic Christian Dior Hardcore Pierced Saddle Bag Purse Handbag RareChristian Dior Floral Embroidered Straw Bag $1200Christian Dior France Vintage Black Leather Shoulder Bag Crossbody PurseAuthentic Christian Dior Satin Evening BagAuthentic Christian Dior Red Clutch Cosmetic Purse Bag Case Never UsedDior Beauty Black Make-up Cosmetic Bag With Zipper Pouch InsertChristian Dior Soft Tote Teal Blue Patent Cannage Leather BagChristian Dior Street Chic White Leather Shoulder Bag Purse (msrp$1840)Christian Dior Clutch Limited Edition 2004Dior Gambler BagChristian Dior Yellow Patent Leather Small Dior Purse Handbag Mu0031Authentic Christian Dior Handbag With Duffle Bag! Great Condition!Dior Makeup BagDior Addict Beauty Cosmetics Makeup Bag Pouch Wallet Trousse Pink Cd Logo Charm