To honor some of the most influential women in fashion history, we’ve compiled several of our favorite “It Bags” from the last few decades that pay homage to these ladylike luminaries.
Initially named the Fifties Constance, the Gucci Jackie was renamed in honor of the illustrious Jackie Kennedy. She was the wife of John F. Kennedy and the First Lady of the United States who showed more grace and poise under a new era of publicity in the media that was unprecedented. An elegant and sophisticated woman, Jackie Kennedy was admired and adored by all, so it’s no surprise that the Italian leader in fashion made such a grand gesture.
Chanel Gabrielle Flap Bag
When it comes to Gabrielle Chanel, many pieces by her eponymous brand are named for various aspects of her life. While the most recently popular Gabrielle line of items is what typically comes to mind, many forget that the Gabrielle Flap Bag was the first to bear her name. With its unique quilting and unusual lock, this flap bag makes a statement, much like the woman who inspired it.
Saint Laurent Anita
This style by Saint laurent was named for the “It Girl” of the 1960s and 1970s, Anita Pallenberg, who was credited for being the muse of the Rolling Stones, having dated both Brian Jones and Keith Richards of the band. She appeared in many movies including her most notable role in Barbarella as The Great Tyrant. The Anita captures the free spirit of Pallenberg’s era with its fun fringe crossbody style.
Princess Grace Kelly, one of the most renowned actresses in the world who lived the ultimate fairy tale to become a princess, prompted Hermes to change the name of the Sac-à-Depêches to the Kelly after she was seen with the bag on multiple occasions. Her adoration of the classic piece created a demand that has not waned since. Upon becoming the princess of Monaco, Kelly abstained from acting and focused her time on her philanthropic duties through AMADE. AMADE Mondiale sought to promote and protect the "moral and physical integrity" and "spiritual well-being of children throughout the world, without distinction of race, nationality or religion and in a spirit of complete political independence."
Louis Vuitton SC Bag
As the daughter of Eleanor and Francis Ford Coppola, Sofia has been in the spotlight since a very young age and has become a filmmaker in her own right by becoming the second woman in the history of the Cannes Film Festival to win Best Director. Sofia collaborated with Louis Vuitton in 2012 to make the SC Bag, a piece resembling the Speedy in functionality and style, with an all-leather construction with additional details.
Christian Dior Lady Dior
Previously named the Chou Chou, this classic bag was renamed in honor of Lady Diana in the 1990s. Lady Diana, later Princess Diana, was heralded for her philanthropy and charity work in her lifetime and was known as the “People’s Princess,” making her passing a devastating tragedy.
Mulberry Del Ray
The first signature bag for the controversial pop songstress Lana Del Rey, this collaboration was highly anticipated for fans of both the singer and the London based brand. After performing at a Mulberry event at the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles, creative director Emma Hill created the bag for the singer. Its initial debut wasn’t on a runway but in the front row on the lap of its muse in early 2012.
Salvatore Ferragamo Sofia Bag
Paying homage to Sophia Loren, an actress of the Hollywood Golden Age, the Sofia Bag was created as a testament to the close friendship she shared with the founding designer. She is most well-known for her titular role in Aida, which received critical acclaim.
Gucci Bardot Bag
Brigitte Bardot, an icon and sex symbol of the 50s to 60s, provides the name for the Bardot Bag. It was an incredibly popular style that embodied the signature look of Gucci and was a fit for all occasions. Brigitte Bardot would later use her fame as a platform to bring awareness to animal rights.
Jane Birkin, a name we all know and love, met Jean-Louis Dumas on a flight where he drafted the first Birkin on an airsick bag. The Birkin has become an icon since it was introduced and remains one of the most coveted bags in the luxury market. Jane Birkin has owned five of these namesake bags, all of which were worn for many years, personalized, and then auctioned off. As of 2017, she reported to Vogue UK that she no longer wore them as “it no longer suits her needs due to its capaciousness.”
The Alexa is one of the most recognizable bags that helped the brand beat the recession when it was released. Inspired by the way she wore a vintage Mulberry briefcase, its name comes from British actress and designer Alexa Chung.
Tom Ford Jennifer
As one of Jennifer Aniston’s favorite labels, it makes sense that the designer made the decision to name a line of bags for her. It’s clear that Anniston genuinely favors the bag since she can be seen wearing her namesake bag in her daily life. One of the perks of being friends with a famous designer: having a trendy handbag named after you.
In 1959, the Constance was named for the fifth daughter of Catherine Chaillet, the head designer at Hermes at the time. It was designed with simplicity and beauty in mind while keeping true to Hermes’s aesthetic for clean lines and structure. Constance Chaillet became a notable French journalist and writer later in life.
Saint Laurent Emmanuelle
On top of being the Editor-in-chief of Vogue Paris, Emmanuelle Alt has been the muse for friend and designer, Hedi Slimane of Celine, but formerly the creative director at Saint Laurent. She prefers the black leather fringe version worn as a crossbody.
Christian Louboutin Elisa
Elisa Sednaoui is the god-daughter of Christian Louboutin, who also happens to be a model, actress, and philanthropist. The Elisa Sednaoui Foundation helps youths explore innovation through art education and provides adults with professional development.
In 1978, Evelyne Bertrand, as head of the Hermes Riding Department, wanted to offer the horse groomers a bag that would allow them to carry their brushes and other grooming utensils with ease. The bag, which is now named for her, had air holes in the “H” motif set in an oval. Unlined and crafted of sturdy leather in a wide variety of colors and multiple sizes, the Evelyne is meant to withstand more wear and tear. It has been reimagined twice from its original inception, now featuring a back pocket and an adjustable strap.