The handbag, at least as far as we at PurseBlog are concerned, is perhaps THE most important of human inventions. Unsurprisingly, it’s got quite the history to boot.
Ancient Egypt, widely accredited with the creation of the first purse, was also home to what was perhaps the world’s first batch of influencers. And their hieroglyphics tell the tale of stylish ladies slinging leather pouches over the shoulders or across their waists (yes… like a fanny pack).
But the purses of the past were chiefly characterized by their utilitarian connotations.
The ancient Greeks, for instance, devised fashion’s earliest mini-bags purely to contain bathtime aroma oils. Medieval merchants similarly had a function in mind as they draped embroidered affairs across themselves, jingling with gold, jewels, and spices from the uncharted islands of the East.
Fast forward to today, however, even amidst the veritable cornucopia of crazed shoppers and the hyperabundant trendy-timeless hellscape that dominates the fashion world, it appears that our basic instincts as humans remain to haul.
For that reason, if nothing else, The Row’s fashionista-favorite Margaux carryall has risen to its rather unlikely it-bag status. Man is, after all, a measure of all things. In this case, it’s all things inside their purse.
But if even that isn’t enough to convince you to partake in the Margaux mania, here are five more reasons that might. Happy splurging!
1. If You Know The Row, You Know The Row
Much has been said about The Row.
Founded by former child stars and pop-culture darlings Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen in 2006 (in their quest to develop that perfect white t-shirt, no less!), the brand has morphed into the ne plus ultra of the much-used and abused quiet luxury trend, its elevated basics and sumptuous silhouettes silent signifiers of modern wealth.
Currently, however, it is the accessories that stylist Neelam Ahooja has dubbed the “meaty purchases” that have taken center stage.
As she sagely notes: “When you have those things, you can take a pair of vintage Levi’s with a plain white tee and put that with your zipped boots, big coat, sunglasses, and oversize bag, and suddenly you look like you’re head-to-toe The Row.”
And the cultiest of its cult-favorite accessories? The Margaux Bag.
2. Ludicrously Capacious (in the Best Possible Way)
When Tom Wambsgans lambasted the sensible schlepper on Succession last year, he inadvertently set forth a chain of events (thanks to TikTok, of course) leading to the magnification of all money that murmurs, or stealth wealth, as we now know it.
But while a sizeable measure of The Row’s clientele indulged in the aesthetic long before it was en vogue, it is perhaps the opposite of what Tom had envisioned that’s come to dominate the fashion scene – the voluminous Margaux.
Introduced in 2018 as a direct manifestation of the Olsen’s vision (who themselves have been papped with the practical purse), the carryall revels in sheer simplicity. The brief? An opulently anonymous tote for all your needs, and then some more.
No wonder the celebrity circuit has been at it; the likes of Jennifer Lawrence, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoë Kravitz, and Kendall Jenner are among its most avid fans!
3. You Get a Margaux! You Get a Margaux! You Get a Margaux!
With the smallest size running upwards of $4,000, it’s undeniably expensive, if not as much as a car (hence the Oprah reference) – unless the exotic route is your choice.
And spoiled for choice you are when it comes to the Margaux! With sizing ranging from as small as 7.5 to 17 inches (in width), to colorways both strong and subdued, and textures as lightweight as a canvas to exotic ostrich and alligator – suede being a “firm favorite” over at Browns Fashion – there’s clearly no stopping at just one!
Simultaneously structured and streamlined, yet supple and slouchy, the Margaux strikes a tough balance with craftsmanship at its core. Supplanted by sturdy dual handles and cinched with a belted closure, it draws inspiration from the founders’ love of Hermès Birkins and Kellys.
Some might even say it’s the next Birkin in the making!
4. It’s the Epitome of Messy-Chic
But before delving into the comparison with its sisters from the big H, it’s worth noting how the Margaux fits into the current climate of lived-in chic handbags.
Mary-Kate and Ashley, themselves aficionados of well-worn and well-aged Birkins, knew what they were doing when they came up with the design. Even though it does come in smaller sizes, the Margaux 15 and 17 remain bestsellers.
And in the age of the big bag, à la A$AP Rocky wearing Bottega Veneta or even Jane Birkin’s legendary Birkin, where the baggage of daily life seeps out of our collective psyches onto precious purse real estate, our bags need to be “part storage, part fridge and part safety deposit box,” as the Guardian writes.
The generous proportions of the Margaux, with functionality at foremost, allow you to easily move through an otherwise messy life.
5. Is It Quite Possibly the Next Birkin?
The Row purses have served as imitation fodder among lesser brands for almost as long as it’s been making them, banking on the recurring trend towards minimalism.
But as the Spring 2024 collections have begun rolling in, the mimicking has reached a new peak, what with the Salvatore Ferragamo Hug bag, as well as belted-tote silhouettes from the likes of Prada, Gucci and Louis Vuitton all seemingly taking design cues from the Margaux!
And as the handbag aficionados that we are, picking up on the subtle idiosyncrasies of design and detail, whispers abound that the Margaux is set to be the next Birkin, its influence on its contemporaries a case study of sartorial success similar to that of Hermès’ perennial classic.
Then again, however, the Margaux, already at a much more accessible price point (and simply accessible overall), seems to be reaching critical mass, especially among influencer circles, meaning it’s nowhere near as rarefied as a Birkin.
It’s certainly undergoing “It” status at the moment. But only time will tell if it can prove to be a worthy challenger to its Hermès’ frenemies. Until then, we can simply enjoy it as the meticulously crafted (and utterly comfy) carryall it is.
featured image via @alyssa.lenore