• Welcome to the Styleforum Approved contest! This is a contest where everyone wins: in fact, every participant will get a (highly coveted) “Styleforum approved” bracelet to flaunt to your oblivious friends. The only thing you have to do is show appreciation for a member of the forum or an affiliate vendor.
  • STYLE. COMMUNITY. GREAT CLOTHING.

    Bored of counting likes on social networks? At Styleforum, you’ll find rousing discussions that go beyond strings of emojis.

    Click Here to join Styleforum's thousands of style enthusiasts today!

The Definitive MANBAG Thread, Part II: 2014~

rach2jlc

Prof. Fabulous
Dubiously Honored
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
15,049
Reaction score
1,176
After five years, 2800+ replies and nearly half a million views, let's start a new chapter to the DEFINITIVE MANBAG thread.

Here is the original:
http://www.styleforum.net/t/115841/the-definitive-manbag-thread-part-i-2009-2014/0_100

What's changed since I started the original thread? Well, Marc Jacobs, Dolce&Gabbana, Lambertson Truex, CK Collection, etc. have either gone under, changed their manufacture, or altered themselves entirely. Prada and Gucci are totally different animals now. CoSTUME NATIONAL went from goth ninja to hobo; Yohji collaborated with Hermes. Versace hired Plokhov, then got rid of him and went back to their glam-rock roots. Hedi came to YSL and changed everything including the name. Valentino retired; Gianfranco Ferre died. One of the Missoni family got lost in a plane crash. Trussardi hired and fired Vukmirovic and dropped the "1911" name. Ghesquiere left Balenciaga and now it sucks.

MORE important are some great new brands that have popped up in between that need coverage. So, feel free to start with some great new brands (or updates to old brands!) and start the discussions.

TO START:

Prada has long since fallen off my radar as a "go to" brand, but I liked the style of these from their S/S2013 collection. We've been talking a lot about soft briefcases and vertical messengers... and these are nice examples.




 
Last edited:

JP Marcellino

Affiliate Vendor
Joined
Jul 6, 2012
Messages
172
Reaction score
72
Why start over? Well, Marc Jacobs, Dolce&Gabbana, Lambertson Truex, CK Collection, etc. have either gone under, changed their manufacture, or altered themselves entirely. Prada and Gucci are totally different ballgames now. CoSTUME NATIONAL went from goth ninja to hobo; Yohji collaborated with Hermes. Versace hired Plokhov, then got rid of him and went back to their glam-rock roots. Hedi came to YSL and ruined everything. Valentino retired; Gianfranco Ferre died and the brand now is completely dissolved. One of the Missoni family got lost in a plane crash. Trussardi hired and fired Vukmirovic and dropped the "1911" name. Ghesquiere left Balenciaga as well, and the bags now suck.
you really put it into perspective how much things have changed. From what i understand they still have not found Vittorio Missoni when his plane went missing. It seems like a lot of missing planes lately.
 

Kira

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
577
Reaction score
48

rach2jlc

Prof. Fabulous
Dubiously Honored
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
15,049
Reaction score
1,176

Kira

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
577
Reaction score
48
No, I don't think so. It may look neat and "vintage" in the pic, but I think if you bought it basically you'd have an old bag that somebody's grand-dad might have carried to sell insurance.
Makes sense. It doesn't look well taken care off, and it should've developed a better patina after decades of wear.
 

cyc wid it

Stylish Dinosaur
Joined
Apr 2, 2011
Messages
12,101
Reaction score
19,440
Just a pic of my daily MMM navy tote.



 
Last edited:

Kira

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
577
Reaction score
48

cyc wid it

Stylish Dinosaur
Joined
Apr 2, 2011
Messages
12,101
Reaction score
19,440
I haven't been to her new space yet. She's been very friendly and helpful in my limited interactions with her. I haven't commissioned anything yet, but her stock items are quite nice too.
 

rach2jlc

Prof. Fabulous
Dubiously Honored
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
15,049
Reaction score
1,176
Cyc wid it... I love that Margiela bag. I've never had one but it's the exact shape of a top-zip tote I like. I remember they made a muted/muddy gray color a few years back that was very nice.

I wonder how many April In Paris bags @rach2jlc
owns..
In case if anyone's wondering, he recommends this woman to make bespoke bags over any of the premier brands (Hermes, Valextra, etc.). Prices start at $3000, I believe.
Here's a thread he made about his bespoke bag made by Beatrice (the owner):
http://www.styleforum.net/t/225626/official-april-in-paris-custom-leather-artisan-thread-feedback-pics-reviews

I definitely recommend AiP over a top-end RTW brand... but in truth I don't have all that many pieces made by her. $3000+ is definitely a LOT of money; I didn't start the thread to throw around that amount casually. Instead, I wanted to highlight a quality artisan (who is also a very friendly/lovely person to deal with) and to point out that if you are considering a "brand" bag at retail it's not a huge stretch just to go bespoke.

Here are a few examples: On the left a Saint Laurent duffle in a pretty standard black leather and so-so hardware. IT's $3550. The Brown one is a gucci leather tote. $3350. Both will be largely machine-made and glued. For less than that you could have a fully handmade bag in whatever color/leather you wanted, with tweaks to fit your own exact needs. Unless you simply LOVE that the bag says "YSL" or "GUCCI" on it in tiny little letters... I can't imagine why you'd buy one.

 
Last edited:

rach2jlc

Prof. Fabulous
Dubiously Honored
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
15,049
Reaction score
1,176
Also, just for fun (lest you think we are exaggerating) here are a few screen captures from the Hermes online store. Keep in mind these bags are not exotic hides... but just their standard calfskin.

The HEBDO square messenger in Evergrain (a soft finegrained calf) (@pdsf notice the textile strap!)


And the classic sac a depeches in Togo (their standard grained calfskin):

 
Last edited:

Kira

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
577
Reaction score
48
Stuff about AiP and high-end RTW bags

That's just criminal. And people buy these? I would love to see their profits and margins.. Despite not being able to buy an AiP bag anytime soon, I bookmarked her and will eventually contact her for a project. Either that, or just flying to San Fran and seeing her myself. I was planning on having a really thin breast wallet made and several leather straps besides the bags. Because I'm carrying my cheapo bag right now, and it simply can't hold the things I want.
 

rach2jlc

Prof. Fabulous
Dubiously Honored
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
15,049
Reaction score
1,176

That's just criminal. And people buy these? I would love to see their profits and margins.. Despite not being able to buy an AiP bag anytime soon, I bookmarked her and will eventually contact her for a project.

Their margins are very, very high... but they also have some incredible overhead.

I read once that the rent of a premium piece of property in a big city can be millions per month, beyond the millions it costs to build/outfit the store (Prada, for example, spent $40+ million on its NYC flagship beyond the monthly lease). NONE of the boutiques (except the LV stores in Tokyo) actually make a profit; they all tank money and are for exposure purposes. All of the brands I mentioned have large flagship stores in every major world capital.

It also costs a few million $$$ per season to stage a runway show. "I don't get out of bed for less than $10k an hour," Linda Evangelista famously said decades ago. A runway show features 30-40 models for several hours... in addition to venue.

Bea (AiP) has just her little store in San Fran; Linjer (to use a recent discussion) is trying to avoid all that "middle man" and exposure crap to give you a good bag at a fair price. Feel free to contact Bea via email; she's very good about responding and will give you a free quote. The smaller leather pieces are more affordable; a thin breast wallet wouldn't be $3000 unless you had it made in walrus-skin or something. :lol:
 
Last edited:

Kira

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
577
Reaction score
48
Their margins are very, very high... but they also have some incredible overhead.

I read once that the rent of a premium piece of property in a big city can be millions per month, beyond the millions it costs to build/outfit the store (Prada, for example, spent $40+ million on its NYC flagship beyond the monthly lease). NONE of the boutiques (except the LV stores in Tokyo) actually make a profit; they all tank money and are for exposure purposes. All of the brands I mentioned have large flagship stores in every major world capital.

It also costs a few million $$$ per season to stage a runway show. "I don't get out of bed for less than $10k an hour," Linda Evangelista famously said decades ago. A runway show features 30-40 models for several hours... in addition to venue.

Bea (AiP) has just her little store in San Fran; Linjer (to use a recent discussion) is trying to avoid all that "middle man" and exposure crap to give you a good bag at a fair price. Feel free to contact Bea via email; she's very good about responding and will give you a free quote. The smaller leather pieces are more affordable; a thin breast wallet wouldn't be $3000 unless you had it made in walrus-skin or something.
Didn't menswear stores do that in the 20th and 19th centuries? I'm reading a historical book on menswear, and they mentioned that. I wonder if they are doing the same thing. Except in this case, it's a Potemkin village.


Have you ever been to a runway show? Isn't it only allowed for VIPs?

I would like to contact Beatrice, but I would be wasting her time. I have A LOT of things to get before I spend thousands on handbags!
 

rach2jlc

Prof. Fabulous
Dubiously Honored
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
15,049
Reaction score
1,176
^No, I'm not high-roller enough to get invites to the shows. I've written copy before so have visited some showrooms/trade shows as a side gig to my teaching, but that's it. And as a member of the Pink Dolphin Society I've got lots of friends who work for brands so get to visit sample and family sales... but it's all pretty "small time."

My interest is more scientific than financial; old school member SoCal2NYC is the only one I know who walks into a boutique with his charge card and comes out with a full collection.
:lol:

Looking through my old files, here are a few more nice bags from various seasons to give members some ideas what is out there:
From left: Ferre FW/09 Travel Bag, Gucci "Diamante" retro collection (Cruise 2010):


Missoni S/S 2010 tote; AW2008 shoulder bag.



Valentino S/S2009 (one of my favorite Valentino accessory collections) (on right is CK Collection SS08 alligator)
 
Last edited:

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by

Featured Sponsor

Face Masks: Pick Your Favorite (Choose 2)

  • Disposable surgical mask

  • White cotton mask

  • Linen-lined mask

  • "Sartorial" mask made of suiting fabric

  • Patterned mask (checks, stripes, fun print, etc.)

  • Solid color silk mask

  • "Sartorial" mask made of tie fabric

  • Sports mask made of synthetic fabric

  • Denim mask

  • Face shield


Results are only viewable after voting.

Related Threads

Forum statistics

Threads
442,484
Messages
9,556,609
Members
199,933
Latest member
Serrano111
Top