Sunday, February 9, 2014

the iconic 2.55 bag

In the early 1920s, Coco Chanel has decided to design a bag that would allow her to use her arm freely due to her frustration of having to carry her handbags in her arms during social events. She added thin straps which were inspired by the straps found on soldier’s bags and introduced the resulting design to the market in 1929.

After her successful comeback to the fashion industry in 1954, Coco Chanel updated the bag for modern women. The bag was created in February 1955, thus the name 2.55. Since then, the Chanel 2.55 flap bag has become the iconic to the Chanel brand.

In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the 2.55, Karl Lagerfeld launched the Reissue in February 2005. The Reissue 2.55 design is exactly as the same as Coco Chanel 2.55 design. 


The features of 2.55 flap bag:

- Quilted diamond or herringbone pattern on the exterior. The pattern is believed to have been inspired by few sources for instances; by jockey’s riding coats, by the stained-glass windows of the abby at Aubazine and by the cushions in Coco Chanel’s Paris apartment. 

-    - The front lock is called the Mademoiselle Lock (rectangular shape) because Coco Chanel was never married.

       - All chain shoulder straps. 

      - The backside of the bag has an outside flap. 

      - There is a zippered compartment inside of the front flap. 

-     - Burgundy lining which is believed is the colour of the uniforms at the convent where Coco Chanel grew up. 

 - Different type of leather which is made to seem to be more worn or vintage like leather.

The sizes for Chanel Reissue 2.55:

     - The baby – 7.5 inches (W) X 5.75 inches (H) X 1.75 inches (D)

     - Small – 9.75 inches (W) X 7.06 inches (H) x 2.16 inches (D)

     - Medium – 11 inches (W) X 8 inches (H) X 2.5 inches (D)

     - Large – 12.25 inches (W) X 9.18 inches (H) X 2.5 inches (D)

     - Extra Large or Jumbo – 14.2 inches (W) X 9.8 inches (H) X 3 inches (D) – rare 

Over the years, there are many variations to the 2.55 design such as the material; leather or fabric, the chain; metal or interwoven leather, the flap; single or double and the closure; mademoiselle or interlocking CC (which was introduced in 1980s by Karl Lagerfeld). In short, the 2.55 refers to all flap-style bags, including variations of the original. The term classic flap is generally refers to the flap bag with the interlocking CC lock and the leather interwoven chain. 


Monday, February 3, 2014

new acquisition: vintage chanel classic flap bag

Since my first purchase of vintage Chanel (beige) flap bag in 2012, I have been looking online and offline for an affordable vintage Chanel black classic flap bag. The search is over now. I have, finally, purchased a vintage Chanel black classic flap bag. I am not sure the name of the bag’s model; it is not 2.55 flap bag. It is slight square-ish. Its measurements: approximately 7 inches (H) X approximately 10 inches (L) X approximately 3 inches (W).

After hours and days searching (mostly) online resellers based in Hong Kong and Malaysia, I came across with a promotion of a reseller based in Hong Kong. Prior to this, few times, I came across good bargains with Malaysian resellers but I was not ‘quick’ enough to place an order. These did not hinder me to continue my search until one day. I saw an advertisement. A vintage Chanel classic flap bag was approximately 43% discount reduction for a limited period! The original price was HK$13,800 and promotion price was HK$7,800 (approximately RM$3,300). This was a pretty good bargain, a vintage classic flap bag for less than HK$10,000 or RM$5,000. 

I almost wanted to check it out straight away (after work, of course) but I waited patiently until the weekend. At first, I thought some lucky girl would have purchased the bag already by the time I visited the store. However, to my surprise, the bag was still there when I visited the store. “Oh.. is this my lucky day or what?,” I thought to myself. Owning a vintage Chanel black flap bag has been on my wish list for a while now and I have been planning and saving money to purchase it in few years but I have never thought that I have the opportunity to buy on that day.

It is a four (4) series bag (1996-1997) and still in good condition with minimal scuff on the bottom corners despite it is 18-17 years old bag! The bag however did not come with an authenticity card. Now, of course the employee of the store would say it is an authentic bag but with some knowledge on how to authentic vintage Chanel bag would come handy in this kind of situation. On another note, the reputation of the reseller is important as well. Since Hong Kong regulation is pretty strict on counterfeit goods and the reseller is Japan based company, these gave some of reassurance.

I guess, there is no need for me to say any further but the rest is history…. After few inspections on the hardware – the chain and zip, the material - lambskin, the stitches etc., I purchased the bag! I checked it from my wish list but now I have been toying with the idea to buy either vintage Chanel tote bag or vintage Chanel sling bag…. I am beginning to wonder if I have slowly developed myself becoming a vintage Chanel collector. If I am financially ok and with a bit luck; why not expanding my collection? 

As February is the birth month of the iconic 2.55 flap bag, I am planning to post few entries on Chanel bags. So stayed tune!

Last but not least, Happy Chinese New Year to those who are celebrating the festivity. Have a good and prosperous year ahead! Stay chic and stylish too...