When Nicolas Ghesquiere made the Louis Vuitton Petite Malle Clutch his first big runway bag debut after taking over the brand's top creative spot from longtime designer Marc Jacobs, I was a little worried. Although the Petite Malle makes good use of Vuitton's long history with fine trunks, a clutch is a risky proposition for a big bet in an increasingly casual fashion world. It was a statement, for sure, but I figured it was just that—a bag that would hang around for a couple seasons as a hallmark of Ghesquiere's early days before falling off in favor of designs that are more broadly palatable to LV's huge consumer base that had long been used to the brand's focus on day and travel bags.
Instead, the Petite Malle has endured in its debut form for several years, sticking steadfastly to its identity is an impractical, if aesthetically pleasing, little hard-sided clutch. Finally, for Pre-Fall 2018, the Petite Malle aesthetic is getting a more accessible (and less expensive—the original starts at $5,200) redesign in the form of the Louis Vuitton Trunk Clutch.
Although the bag is—somewhat confusingly—called a clutch, in reality it's a small crossbody with an optional and adjustable part-chain, part-leather strap. The top of the clutch has a zip closure, as well as a closure strap that fastens at the front with the same gold-toned lock as the original Petite Malle. Inside, you'll find two large compartments separated by a center divider, as well as a small patch pocket at the front interior that looks as though it's intended to hold your ID or credit card.
At almost 8" wide, the bag is big enough to hold essentials like a large smartphone, sunglasses, a small wallet and more, and although the bag is structured, it's not as rigid as its clutch predecessor, which means you get a little more flexibility with the space. Right now, the bag comes in Monogram Inverse or four colors of Epi leather, and both versions are priced at $3,300. They are, perhaps unsurprisingly, all sold out online.