While luxury brands are often synonymous with status, the classic Chanel bag represents history. The classic quilted Chanel purse is often imitated, but few who carry such knockoffs know the true history of the bag. In fact, few may even realize that the classic purse is named the 2.55. This name correlates with its launch date as the bag was first sold in February 1955. It was following the Second World War when designer Coco Chanel grew tired of always having to carry a purse in her hands. The 2.55 was revolutionary as it had a long chain strap, inspired by the straps on soldiers’ packs, allowing for women to free their hands.
The classic bag was re-launched recently, in February of 2005, by Karl Lagerfeld who took over the iconic Chanel fashion house in 1983. While the bags cost upwards of $3,000 USD, they go through rigorous testing to ensure the highest standards of quality are maintained. The classic quilted leather pattern, said to be inspired by Coco’s love of horseback riding, is unchanged. The bags are inspected for cracking resistance, UV protection, and are carefully waterproofed. To ensure the bags can withstand heat and humid conditions, they are placed in a room with 95% humidity and a temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
Of course, each bag still maintains a zippered compartment in the front flap. This space is rumoured to have been created by Coco for storage of her love letters.
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