Handbags of the 1990's

The 90s are back: Look for these 90s handbag brands and styles

The 90s were an iconic time for all things pop culture, from music to movies to fashion. Perhaps we should not be surprised that this decade is making a comeback. Not only is 90s music and fashion once more in vogue, in some ways 1990s fashion never really left.

One of those ways is in iconic 1990s handbags. Some of the handbag styles that were so popular in the 90s were actually originally designed much earlier, and they have continued to be popular over the years. Other 90s handbags were unique to the time, and are now reappearing in stores as a new generation embraces the “retro” styles.

If you want to really stand out as a 90s aficionado, you should know about these 90s handbag styles and the brands that made them popular.

The baguette handbag

The baguette handbag was designed and released by FENDI, and it was made popular by the iconic 90s television show, Sex in the City. This small handbag is designed to hold only the necessities while still being fashionable. The small strap can be looped over the wrist or arm, or you can easily tuck the handbag under your arm. Even though the handbag is small and stiff in design, it is still practical, and its flashy buckle makes a stylish statement.

The Blazon Chain of the Celine Macadam

The Macadam handbag from Celine featured a unique stiff trapeze shape, with a small handle that can be carried in the hand or looped on the wrist or forearm. This bag could hold much more than the baguette, but had the same general style. The chain of C’s attaching the handle to the clasp was original and well known, and it was mimicked by lesser-known brands in handbags throughout the 90s.

The timeless classic of the HERMES Kelly

The Kelly bag by HERMES was actually originally designed in the 1950s and made popular by Grace Kelly. Just as Madonna mimicked the flare of Marilyn Monroe, 90s women were all about embracing that original sense of class that they and others like Jackie O embraced and brought into the later decades with them.

This bag comes in a variety of colors, some more easily found than others. Finding a vintage HERMES Kelly in various shades of rose is common if coveted, but the Bleu bags are the hardest to find. Although many handbag brands tried to mimic this classic style, there is nothing like the original.

HERMES also came out with a flashier handbag called Constance in the late 50s that also persisted throughout the 90s, although it had a longer shoulder strap.

The saddle bag

The saddle bag was one of the most popular handbag designs in the 90s, found everywhere from Walmart to the original design by Christian Dior. Saddle bags were first released late in the decade, but they had disappeared by the 2010s. Today saddle bags are trying to make a comeback, although you won’t see them as often as other 90s style handbags.

The popularity of Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton got its start in 1884 Paris, but its vintage monogram bags gained new popularity in the 90s. Everyone needed a Louis Vuitton bag, whether it was the larger canvas monogram bag or the small Pochette or Speedy designs. The collection was made popular by celebrities like Naomi Campbell and Kate Moss, and paved the way for the designs that took fashion by storm in the early 2000s.

The bamboo made popular by Gucci

Gucci came out with a beautiful small leather handbag of similar style to the FENDI baguette, but with a sensible shoulder strap and an iconic bamboo handle. After Gucci released their handbag design in the early 90s, it cropped up everywhere from the office to Hollywood. Once the handbag was made popular by Princess Dianna, other designers took up styling handbags with bamboo – or faux plastic bamboo – handles.

Stylish canvas bags with sensible shoulder straps

Shoulder straps started making a comeback in the mid-90s, and FENDI was among the first to embrace the trend. Their canvas bag with long shoulder strap is just as stylish as the popular baguette, and has the same monograming. This medium-sized handbag was a favorite for women on the go.

The Lady Dior was another popular shoulder bag, designed for the Princess Dianna. The bag is both sensible and stylish, and was another favorite throughout the late 90s as her popularity only soared after her death.

The bowling bag

Parada released the bowling bag style handbag in the late 90s, and it remained popular into the early 2000s. While not nearly as large as a bowling bag, this smaller version of that design is perfect for women who want to carry a lot with them while on the go. This design style was carried over to handbags of all brands and classes, and remained popular until the early 2000s, although the later handbags of this type were much flashier.

The key takeaways of the 90s

The 90s taught us that style and celebrities go hand in hand. Since these popular handbags of the 90s were made mainstream by actresses, musicians, and royalty both British and American, popular fashion continues to be established by celebrities and popular culture. With the 90s back in the fashion magazines, finding these vintage 90s handbags will be a must for your accessories.