Honey, they shrunk the handbag

  • AseanPlus News
  • Saturday, 29 Apr 2017

Tod's Micro Wave and Python Wave bag

HONG KONG: Although bags have been shrinking in recent seasons, they could still fit a mobile phone, credit card, keys and lipstick. Now the big brands have dialled back a few more notches, with lower price tags, as one way to bag new customers.

Clients thought Johnny Coca was kidding when his first collection for Mulberry, autumn/winter 2016, included evening bags the size of a key fob on a chain, but they were a sell-out.

This summer, Hermes and Valentino have transformed the handbag into miniature marvels – pendants strung around the neck or across the body in colourful leathers – although Valentino's lacquered pendants are really lipstick and mirror compacts containing the Loveblade Rosso No.1 lipstick.

Belgian luxury leather goods brand Delvaux has been making tiny bags since 2012 and serves up four styles in its Charm size range, including the Tempête Charm in calfskin, the Mutin (mini saddlebag style) and the Madame and classic Brillant Charms, which come in citron, nude and lilac calfskin with a pearly sheen.

And in the new autumn collections there are more Brillant Charms, although Delvaux's witty send-up of their nationality – toy totes decorated with mussels, chips and a Magritte painting – sadly will not make it to retail.

Cassie Smart, accessories buying manager at Matchesfashion.com, describes this trend for tinier dimensions as the "do not disturb my look" bag – size doesn't interfere with the overall look and hang of an outfit.

Recently, accessories designer Jerome Dreyfuss suggested the trend is driven by a desire to be unencumbered.

"Mini bags bring this kind of allure: a carefree, hands-free silhouette," he says. Many women lugging around an overstuffed work bag can relate to that. There is the added appeal that if your budget doesn't stretch to a Hermes Birkin, the sweet micro sacs strung on long solid gold chains in Nadege Vanhee-Cybulski's summer collection might be tempting. Arriving in Hong Kong soon, there are round, zippered evening bags or cute, flap-fastened bags in Mississippi alligator and lizard. Prices are not yet known. - South China Morning Post


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