Leonardo Da Vinci and the origins of our beloved handbag

A recent CNN article about how Leonardo Da Vinci himself was an early imaginer of a modern essential   the handbag.

Leonardo Da Vinci, who is known as probably the greatest genius of all time, also designed something very similar to the modern handbag. At that time, it is thought that Da Vinci was motivated to engineering a safe and secure way to transport goods. Not only did he design a handbag that could be carried by one person he also created bags that could fit onto a camel because Da Vinci knew that a secure way to transporting goods is the foundation of any country's successful economic system.

 "The bag, in many ways, is similar to a 20th-century handbag. It has brass fastenings at the top, is made of brown calfskin, and it has a top clasp. It's like a classic handbag that your mum might have." academic Shahidha Bari.

The CNN article got us interested in learning more about the actual history of our favorite fashion accessory, the handbag.

Handbag History

The handbag as we know it began its journey as a purse, the purse was made of a soft cloth, and its sole purpose was to carry coins when you were out running errands. Early modern young 17th-century European women were learning embroidery as a vital skill for marriage, and they were practicing their embroidery skills on making their purses more beautiful and one of a kind.

By the late 18th century European women were not wanting bulky or untidy looking handbags, so reticules were designed. Reticules were made of delicate fabrics like silk and velvet, they were carried with wrist straps. They first became popular in France, and then they crossed over into Britain.

The modern purse, clutch, pouch or handbag as we now know it came about in England during the Industrial Revolution due to the increase of railroad travel.

 Designer Handbag History

It wasn't until the 1950s that designer handbags from Luxury fashion house designers such as Chanel, Vuitton, and Hermes, and became an influential part of the culture. As the years went on, more women became employed and established an active lifestyle outside of the home, the need for both practical and fashionable handbags grew.  

Some of the most iconic designer handbags of our time have been the Chanel Quilted Bag, Hermes Birkin Bag , Louis Vuitton Alma Bag, Balenciaga City Bag , and the Dior Saddle Bag..

We have carried our fair share of these iconic bags and still receive them as inventory from time to time.

At Consigning Women when you shop our vast selection of designer label handbags, purses and select accessories you can expect that our team of experts has adequately authenticated all the items in the store, and can guarantee peace of mind that your investment in a piece is authentic.