Ralph Lauren Soft Ricky Bag

Very few things in fashion are genuinely underrated. We’re an industry that’s constantly chattering, and distinctive handbags get an inordinate amount of the praise because of their ability to telegraph luxury and expensiveness; there’s a reason that we talk about It Bags and not, say, It Scarves. Upon seeing my friend Danny’s new all-black Ralph Lauren Ricky Bag, though, it occurred to me that perhaps the Ricky is exactly that rare bird – the underrated, slept-on, yet totally gorgeous designer bag.

The Ricky isn’t exactly a secret, of course, but because Ralph Lauren is known for so many other great products before bags (and because RL opts not to retail it in most, if any, luxury department stores), it flies a bit under the radar. It shouldn’t, though; the bag comes in a plethora of beautiful colors, materials, shapes and structures, including the “soft” version above, which is slightly slouchier, includes a shoulder strap and has a north-south proportion similar to the Hermes Haut A Courroies.

Speaking of Hermes, I know that a lot of people will be tempted to compare this bag to the Birkin. That’s absolutely a fair comparison, particularly when you consider the double handles and top flap structure. Where this bag succeeds that other bags similar to the Birkin often fail (ahem, Saint Laurent), though, is that the design has gone a long way toward adding style to that iconic design. In fact, I’d go so far as to say I like this one better – it has the same ladies-who-lunch cachet, but it’s bolder. Not to mention that, although expensive, it’s not nearly as extravagantly priced as it could be. Pick up this version in a rainbow of colors for $3,500 via Ralph Lauren.

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  • Guest

    It’s cachet, not caché.

  • gpc

    too clunky and too much going on – probably why it stays under the radar…

  • sue

    Some versions look better than others but most remind me of the Luella Gisele circa 2002

  • bir

    love the carbon fiber version because not only is it a ricky but its sooo much more !!!

  • Stella Kashmoney

    This is so so beautiful. I love the colour.

  • Reez

    Amanda, I’m sorry but I have to say it is somehow biased to say that this is similar in an acceptable way to the Birkin, while the Saint Laurent is in a non acceptable way. I remember the post you made on ” Imitiation as a form of flattery” regarding the Celing Luggage Tote. So why should the Saint Laurent be any different? It actually is more neat than this Ralph Lauren design. Besides, 3500$? That is a ridiculous price for a very non-original idea. We’re not just tempted to compare it, even a fashion -ignorant can immediately spot the resemblance.

    • http://www.purseblog.com/ Amanda Mull

      Well, of course my opinion is biased by what I like. I don’t mind a well-designed take off on a classic shape, which I think this is. I mind a dumbed-down version that removes the luxurious, elegant feel of the bag, which is how I view the Saint Laurent version, which didn’t differ all that much from this one in price.

      Most bags are a play on a more famous bag in some way, and I don’t think that that, in and of itself, is a fault; what matters is where the designer goes from there. Some designers go in a good direction, others don’t, and when they don’t, it makes the whole thing seem like a bad idea.

  • Tina

    I Am so truly in love with this bag especially the Limegreen color

  • FashionableLena

    For me, it’s a bit busy.

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