At the time of this writing, we don’t know if Marc Jacobs’ show today for Louis Vuitton will be the last in his 16-year tenure as the creative leader of the incredibly powerful French brand. What we do know, however, is what Jacobs has done for Vuitton so far, which is nothing short of turning the brand into a household name with one of the most iconic logos in fashion history. He’s interpreted and re-interpreted Vuitton’s signature details and bags time and again for a modern audience, and recently, CR Fashion Book went behind the scenes to witness the making of the latest Louis Vuitton Speedy Bag.

CR’s “Anatomy of a Bag” series, which has featured the likes of Hermes and Dior in the past, and now it’s on to another French fashion giant. The Speedy in question is a dazzling blue mini version in embossed python, which retails for $6,500 at Louis Vuitton stores. According to writer Christopher Bartley, this Speedy takes over 400 steps to manufacture and comprises 21 individual pieces of python, leather and hardware. Below, check out our favorite behind-the-scenes shots from the CR shoot, or head on over to the mag’s website and read the full story. Also, you can shop Louis Vuitton via the brand’s official site.

Here’s Katie Holmes cruising around solo in NYC, carrying a Louis Vuitton Mon Monogram Neverfull Tote. In a rare move for a celeb (or anyone), Katie seems to have opted out of getting her Neverfull monogrammed, choosing instead to go with a custom-color stripe alone. Katie has quite a nuanced designer bag collection, which you can view in its entirety in “The Many Bags of Katie Holmes”! You can customize your own Mon Monogram for $1,440 at Louis Vuitton.

We can’t successfully ID Katie’s other, rather ambiguous looking black leather bag, but feel free to take your best guess. Lest we forget, Katie Holmes does have a career other than paparazzi dodging – she took a break from acting immediately before and after her divorce from Tom Cruise, but she currently has four different films in the works.

Kate Holmes carries a Louis Vuitton Mon Monogram Neverfull Tote in NYC (1) Kate Holmes carries a Louis Vuitton Mon Monogram Neverfull Tote in NYC (2) Kate Holmes carries a Louis Vuitton Mon Monogram Neverfull Tote in NYC (3) Kate Holmes carries a Louis Vuitton Mon Monogram Neverfull Tote in NYC (4)

Here’s Sarah Jessica Parker, about to treat a nearby paparazzo to some very creative hand gestures while walking her son to school in New York City. On her arm is a sunny yellow Louis Vuitton W Bag with flocked monogram motifs. The W is a new LV bag for this season; it’s so new, it’s not even available online yet, but we know that Sarah’s all-leather PM version retails for $4,400. Be sure to check out the rest of SPJ’s extra luxe bag stash in “The Many Bags of Sarah Jessica Parker”.

Amanda just recently introduced our readers to the Louis Vuitton W a couple weeks. The bag comes in several different varieties of mixed coated canvas, tonal leather, and inventive motifs. There’s also at least one edition of the bag that features no monograms at all! (GASP!) Despite my general distaste for monograms, I really like this bag in some of its darker, more subtle variations.

With Louis Vuitton’s renewed interest in high-dollar, logo-wary customers has come a bevy of new products that are set to take the brand in a new, more sophisticated direction for Fall 2013. First came the wide-gusseted W Bag, which had commenter reactions seemingly split right down the middle, and now we have the Louis Vuitton Capucines Bag, which borrows the name and a detail or two from a classic Vuitton bag but expands on them to form something ladylike and luxurious.

We first spotted this bag on the arm of Angelina Jolie a couple of weeks ago, and it’s a perfect pick for her style – neutral, elegant, understated. The bag is an important addition to Vuitton’s lineup, because not only is it all leather (which appeals to Vuitton’s desired clientele and allows the brand to price it prohibitively for aspirational customers), but its minimally branded. The LV that you see above is totally optional, and if the wearer prefers, it can be covered by a flap that’s tucked inside in promotional photos. Instead of the well-known letters, it bears a more subtle star motif that plays a secondary role in the iconic Vuitton monogram print. It’s still LV, but it’s not a literal LV, which is an important distinction for many of the most high-end customers.

The bag comes in two sizes, MM and GM, with a 1.5 inch difference in width between them (14.2 for the MM, 15.7 for the GM) and a price difference of $450 ($5,150 vs. $5,600). That kind of pricing puts the brand firmly in Hermes territory, a comparison that Vuitton is likely hoping to draw with its new leather offerings and their attendant prices. Currently, the GM only comes in two colors (black and red), while the MM comes in a range of six shades, including one that’s strikingly similar to Hermes’ signature orange. The bags’ hardware varies between silver and gold, depending on the leather color. Check out some of our favorite versions below or get more information about both the MM and GM versions via Louis Vuitton.

Actually, this is a bit of a re-introduction or, perhaps, a formal introduction. Many of you have already seen the new Louis Vuitton W Bag in the arms of Michelle Williams, who stars in the brand’s fall handbag ads, but now we have a close-up look at all five versions of the bag, which is one of Vuitton’s marquee new pieces for Fall 2013. (more…)

Angelina Jolie was recently spotted motoring around LA with her eldest son Maddox, carrying a brand new Louis Vuitton Capucines Bag. The bag only comes in leather and is missing 99% of the conspicuous LV logos you’d usually expect to see, which is indicative of Louis Vuitton’s desire to capture more high-dollar customers with comparatively less flashy, more high-end leather products that appeal to a broader range of designer bag fans. The Capucines isn’t an entirely new design from LV of course, simply a reinvigorated one. You can purchase it for the very Angelina Jolie appropriate price tag of $5,150 at Louis Vuitton.

Angelina starred in a Louis Vuitton “Core Values” campaign back in 2011, so she’s definitely a friend of the brand. Now discontinued, the “Core Values” campaigns were meant to emphasize heritage over high fashion, promoting values such as craftsmanship, integrity, and the cosmopolitan nature of the brand. I have a hunch that the campaign mainly exists to help you free your mind of all the brand associations you have with the myriad of LV-lugging celebrities you love to loathe, if only for a moment.

Everyone loves handbags (everyone here, at least) and everyone loves animals (unless you’re a sociopath, in which case, I’m a little creeped out), so it’s not particularly surprising that the animal sculptures that Louis Vuitton commissioned from British artist Billie Achilleos have taken on a life of their own. Achilleos’ work was first intended for display at the brand’s London maison, but since its debut, the collection has traveled among some of Vuitton’s fanciest boutiques. Now that the animals are making a stop in the brand’s Waikiki store, there’s a new dude in town – a Louis Vuitton turtle. (more…)

Here’s NYC socialite/fashionista Olivia Palermo, sans hunky German fiance, carrying a “Jasper” red Louis Vuitton SC Satchel. The SC satchels have been a celeb favorite ever since their debut a few years ago. As Louis Vuitton fans already know, SC stands for Sofia Coppola, and this satchel is part of a capsule collection designed by the director. This much-beloved bag is still available from Louis Vuitton for $4,850. Designing a capsule collection for a high-end designer like Louis Vuitton seems a rather random undertaking for such a highly esteemed film director, but it helped, I suppose, that SC is a good pal of creative director Marc Jacobs.

Olivia’s unique necklace was made by the “The Maasai Project,” a venture from Pikolinos which employs women from the Kenyan Maasai tribe to make hand-crafted bags, shoes, and accessories, with all profits going towards development projects for the tribe. Olivia is an ambassador for the brand. (See, she does do something other than dress impeccably!)

Celebrity casting choices don’t often catch me by surprise – after all, most designer deck out their future ad girls in the brand’s wares for months before their partnerships are formally announced – but here we have Michelle Williams, starring in the ad campaign for two Fall 2013 Louis Vuitton Bags – the Louis Vuitton W Bag and the Louis Vuitton Capucines Bag.

The W Bag will likely remind many of you of the Celine Luggage Tote, with its flared gussets, double top handles and north-south central panel shape. The design chooses to over-emphasize the gussets in a couple of ways; first, by bringing them into the body of the bag itself, and also by outfitting them in contrasting Louis Vuitton monogram canvas on the ad version in particular. The W Bag is also available in versions that have tonal monogram at the gussets, but the contrast of print between the gussets and the body of the bag is ever-present.

The two preview ads we were given don’t depict the Capucines Bag, but longtime LV fans know what it’ll look like – the slim, trim shoulder bag with a long strap has an old Vuitton favorite, and it’s just the latest design to be reinvigorated as the brand looks to capitalize more heavily on its heritage to attract more high-spending customers.

The images, lensed by Peter Lindbergh, are pretty beautiful. I normally prefer actual models to do the work of models, but Williams looks gorgeous and has the kind of face that can do the subtly expressive work that big-campaign still photography requires. What do you think? This bag isn’t my favorite of the brand’s offerings, but I’m looking forward to seeing the images of the Capucines when the full campaign is released.

Michelle Williams Louis Vuitton W Bag 1

The Louis Vuitton Neverfull Bag may be one of the brand’s newest classics, but that doesn’t mean LV is in a rush to flood the market with as many different versions as possible. First, there was only monogram canvas, and then came Damier, both Eben and Azur. Today, we’re excited to bring you the first leather version of the ever-popular tote – the Louis Vuitton Epi Leather Neverfull Bag MM.

For the moment, the Epi Neverfull only comes in the medium MM size, which is probably just fine for most shoppers – it’s the most popular of the three options anyway. The initial run of the bag comes in seven colors, ranging from basic black to brights like yellow and orange, and boasts a microsuede interior. The bag retails for $1,990 and is available now, both at Louis Vuitton stores worldwide and LouisVuitton.com. We’d give you a direct link to the product page, but at present, the company’s website isn’t cooperating with our efforts to locate that page. (Or to open at all.) Luckily, we have a bunch of photos of the new bag, in all its colorful glory, below. (Update: Louis Vuitton has provided a link for the Neverfull that works!)

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