Until I saw the Balenciaga Serpent Arena Classic Work Bag, it had never occurred to me that I hadn’t ever seen a snakeskin Bal Motorcycle bag. After all, the design has been around in one incarnation or another for over a decade, and we’ve seen it in everything from straw to crocodile – surely there had been at least a python version, right?
In scouring the Internet for our article on the Internet’s most expensive luxury handbags, one thing became clear: even if a brand doesn’t do much to actively promote its most expensive pieces, almost all of them have those bags waiting in the wings for the right client. Under previous creative director Stefano Pilati, Yves Saint Laurent was one of the brands that mostly dealt in regular leather, with an occasional snakeskin or ostrich bag here and there.
By now, some of you have likely read Friday Night Lights author Buzz Bissinger’s instantly infamous GQ piece on his Gucci leather shopping addiction. (If you haven’t and you’re interested, you should read it, but be warned, the whole thing takes a bit of a strange turn circa page four.) I’ve known a few people with compulsive shopping issues in my time in fashion, but Bissinger’s story caught my attention because, for him, it all started online and eventually mushroomed into a half-million dollar habit.
Compared to fall, spring’s textures can be a bit…down-market. We love raffia and canvas as much as anyone else, but naturally, we love snakeskin and leather even more. So what’s the secret to incorporating successfully what might feel like a heavy material into your warm-weather wardrobe? Why, a mini crossbody bag, of course. (That’s the answer to a lot of spring and summer bag problems, trust me.) The only other problem with exotics in particular, of course, is that it’s a look that tends to cost an arm and a leg; fortunately, it doesn’t have to.
It likely won’t shock anyone to hear that VBH’s Fall 2013 handbags are pristine and luxurious; that’s sort of what the brand is know for, after all. The line of satchels, totes and clutches, which are available for pre-order via Moda Operandi through March 21, are in keeping with the clean, strong lines and elegant finish for which the brand has become well known.
If having too much of a good thing is truly possible, then I think I’ve had a little too much python lately. Because of strong markets for ulta-premium accessories, exotics are having something of a golden era at the moment, and although that’s yielded a lot of utterly lust-worthy handbags, its also yielded a lot of stuff that all sort of looks the same.
If you’ve been paying attention over the past few years, then you already know that J.Crew has ambitions beyond its mid-priced mall-brand origins. CEO Mickey Drexler and Creative Director Jenna Lyons have helped exponentially elevate the brand’s fashion status, and while J.Crew remains a good source for accessibly priced sweaters and cute statement jewelry, the store would also like to sell you handbags that cost four figures.
Christmas parties are tricky, almost universally. Except for one or two per year where you get to see your actual friends who don’t really care what you wear because they remember that time you thought adult knee socks were a good idea, the opportunity for judgment is rife. Not only is it important to strike an appropriate, chic note at your own office Christmas party, but at that of your significant other, where no one else knows you?
Our friends from Heritage Auctions are at it again. Have a Holy Grail Handbag in your mind? An exotic? Some Hermes? Exotic Hermes, maybe? Or exotic…anything? Those are the bags that dreams are made of, naturally, and Heritage Auctions is in the business of making those dreams come true. In the Heritage Auctions Handbag & Luxury Accessories December Auction on December 4 in Dallas, the selection of dream bags up for grabs is truly mind-blowing.
I had a close encounter of the VBH kind over the weekend. I was shopping with some friends at the Woodbury Common outlets north of New York City (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, by the way), and at the Last Call Neiman Marcus store, I found the little corner of the handbag section where they were hiding the stuff you’d actually want to buy: Jason Wu, Marni, and most excitingly of all, VBH.