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Five timeless bags you’ll wear forever

With an increasing focus on conscious consumption, there’s never been a better time to invest in a forever bag. Here are five gorgeously timeless handbags from Sloane Street’s most loved brands that you’ll wear for years to come

8 September 2022

Each year millions of tonnes of clothes are produced, worn, and thrown away. And while the fashion industry has a long way to go to reduce the impact it has on the planet, one of the pillars of sustainable fashion is to eschew trend-driven purchases in favour of buying pieces with longevity. 

As Orsola de Castro, curator of the Designer Picnic and co-founder of Fashion Revolution, puts it, “At a time when looking for solutions is imperative to mitigate climate change, we are here to remind you that the road to circularity demands longevity and that your journey starts with your wardrobe.”

This means buying less by shopping for quality over quantity, then making sure to keep it in top condition, with the aim of reducing the amount of clothing that ends up in landfill. 

Here, we have selected five classic handbags from Sloane Street’s storied brands that will stand the test of time and become wardrobe cornerstones that you will wear time and time again for years to come. 

For further information on the Designer Picnic and to book, please visit

Chanel flap bag

An indubitable icon, the Chanel flap bag (sometimes known as the 11.12 bag) is an evolution of the original 2.55 style which debuted in 1955. Epitomising Coco Chanel’s fuss-free approach to design, it was one of the first bags to come with a strap that enabled women to be hands-free, liberating them from having to clutch the top handle of a framed bag or pouch. 

For autumn/winter 2022, the style comes in a demure checked tweed (another Chanel signature), part of a collection devoted to the fabric beloved by Gabrielle Chanel, who used to wear her lover’s, the Duke of Westminster’s, jackets on walks in the Scottish countryside.

Chanel flap bag, £3,770

Dior Lady Dior bag

Now a permanent fixture in Dior’s collection of handbags, the Lady Dior bag was originally created for Princess Diana in 1995, during the tenure of Gianfranco Ferré as creative director for the house of Dior. As the story goes, Bernadette Chirac, the wife of French president Jacques Chirac, requested that the Maison create a bag fit for a princess that could be given to Princess Diana on a visit to Paris at a Cézanne exhibition at the Grand Palais. 

The resulting design embodied the House’s vision of elegance and beauty: a rectangular box shape in black quilted leather (a design inspired by the upholstery on the Napoleon III chairs Monsieur Dior used at his first shows), with arched handles and gold hardware. The Princess wore it on several subsequent occasions and it became an immediately recognised style and has since evolved into multiple other shapes and fabrications.

Dior small Lady Dior bag, £3,900 

Louis Vuitton The Capucines

The Capucines was first launched in 2013, making it a relatively new addition to the House’s family of iconic bags. Named for the address of Monsieur Louis Vuitton’s first store, which opened in 1854 at 4 Rue Neuve-des-Capucines in the heart of an area historically dedicated to the highly artisanal craftsmanship of luxury goods. The bag is a tribute to the creative spirit of the neighbourhood and the remarkable women who contributed to the reputation of Louis Vuitton and its designs, including Empress Eugénie, actress Sarah Bernhardt, and the Queen of Greece.

Instantly recognisable by its understated feminine silhouette, the style features a ladylike top handle as well as a longer strap for hands-free versatility. This season’s sophisticated colour-pairing of soft blush and timeless caramel make it an all-season staple.

Louis Vuitton Capucines MM bag, £5,150 

Gucci Blondie

Making its first appearance at the Gucci Love Parade fashion show in Los Angeles in November 2021, the Gucci Blondie takes its inspiration from an archival style defined by a rounded rendition of the signature interlocking G, as seen in patent documents from 1971. 

With all the makings of a forever handbag – easily identifiable silhouette, luxury materials, classic proportions – it has since been seen on the arms of stars including Anne Hathaway, Elle Fanning and Dakota Johnson. We love the easy elegance of this season’s suede iteration, finished with sporty nylon straps or classic leather.

Gucci Blondie medium bag, £2,620 

Hermès Birkin bag

The Birkin is so covetable that in 2001 Sex And The City’s Samantha Jones was desperate enough to pretend that she was sourcing one for actress Lucy Liu in order to jump the five-year wait list at a Hermès store; the bag is a verifiable cult classic. The bag was first imagined 17 years earlier, in 1984, when Jean-Louis Dumas, executive chairman of Hermès (1978-2006) was on a flight from Paris to London and seated next to British actress Jane Birkin, who complained that she couldn’t find a bag suitable for her needs as a young mother. Dumas immediately sketched a supple and spacious rectangular holdall with a burnished flap and saddle stitching with a dedicated space for her baby’s bottles – and the Birkin was born. 

Coming in an array of fine leathers and skins, the Birkin has become synonymous with timeless elegance. This season, it has been reimagined in all-black with a tough new rocker spirit, inspired by the biker jacket: smooth leather, outside pockets, a chaîne d’ancre chain, and a padlock cased in leather.

Hermès Birkin Rock bag in volupto calfskin, £16,000

More shopping edits

What to buy from Sloane Street’s most loved brands