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    

R54650 Auth Christian Dior Beige Patent Leather 9.44" Lady Dior Cannage Bag ShwAuth Christian Dior Lady Dior Cannage Shoulder Bag Black Leather Italy Vtg U532Christian Dior Lady Dior Hand Tote Shoulder Bag Ala Moana Hawaii LimitedR2058 Auth Christian Dior Purple Soft Patent Lady Dior 11.41" Shoulder Bag GhwLady Dior Medium Size Bag Patent Leather Purple/white Color 2015/2016 SeasonAuth Christian Dior Lady Dior Yellow Patent Trotter 2way Bag Ghw W/...ey510Christian Dior Black Crocodile Pattern Leather Satchel BagChristian Dior Leather Cannage Bag Turquoise BlueVintage Christian Dior Handbag Satchel Blue MonogramChristian Dior Quilted White Leather Shoulder Bag/baguetteDior Gaucho Saddle BagChristian Dior Diorissimo Black Leather Satchel Handbag PurseChristian Dior Cannage Black Quilted Med Drawstring Shoulder Bag Purse MintAuthentic Christian Dior Boston Bag Blue Canvas 122932Authentic Christian Dior Boston Bag Black Pvc 160973Christian Dior Authentic Black Leather Bag Purse Studs DiamondsAuthentic Christian Dior Boston Bag Navy Blue Canvas 160813Authentic Christian Dior Black Leather Handbag Christian Dior Shoulder Bag Purse Handbag ( Green/tan)Christian Dior Hobo Style Handbag, Cute, Unique Style, Pre-ownedChristian Dior Monogram Rasta Pouchette 1 Clutch Green/red/yellowChristian Dior Handbag Take OffAuthentic Vintage Christian Dior Monogram Canvas Leather Satchel Shoulder BagVintage Christian Dior Navy Monogrammed Canvas Small Shoulder BagAuthentic Dior Granville Tote Large Size! Rare!R2032 Auth Christian Dior Moss Green Satin Lady Dior 12.59" Cannage 2way Bag Ghw*christian Dior* Ladies Beach & Sea Slip-on Mules Flipflops In Bag Uk7 Eu40 BnibChristian Dior Burgundy Red Patent Leather Purse-d-i-o-r Charms-great ConditionVintage 60's Christian Dior Jacquard Logo Monogram Dior Shoulder HandbagChristian Dior "my Dior" Vintage Lip Gloss Case Gold Satchel BagLot Of 3 Dior Miss Dior Absolutely Blooming Plus Pink Gift Bag Gwp Samples Vintage Christian Dior Blue ClutchChristian Dior Cotton Terry Cloth Make Up/accessory/small Hand Bag Pink/whiteAuth Christian Dior Shoulder Bag Navy Vintage 6d200780