Across its century-long history, Chanel has grown to be one of the leading fashion houses across the globe. Their bags have developed into symbols of utmost luxury, sought after for their versatile designs and exquisite craftsmanship. Yet, buying a Chanel bag on your own can be daunting, especially given their hefty price tags and the large range of choices offered to customers.
That’s why at EcoRing, we have written this guide to help you along in your journey of pursuing the luxury you deserve! Even if you have zero knowledge of Chanel bags prior to this article, we’ll make sure you’ll become a pro in recognising their most popular styles, differentiating between their leathers, and pairing the right bag with the right occasion!
The Best Style & Size for You
First, to determine what style and size of bag best suits you, we must first think about the purpose of your purchase. Are you buying a Chanel bag for financial investment, or for personal use? Will it be used for everyday carry, or as a showpiece which you’ll only bring out on the most important occasions?
1. Classic Flap
One top investment option: the Classic Flap Bag. Adds instant elegance to any outfit and appreciates in value over time.
The Classic Flap comes in seven sizes: Extra Mini (17cm), Mini Square (17cm), Mini (20cm), Small (23cm), Medium (25.5cm), Jumbo (30cm), and Maxi (33cm). The Medium Flap renders the highest popularity due to its great versatility and practical carrying capacity.
2. Boy Chanel
Despite not being as lucrative as the Classic Flap, the Boy Chanel is highly coveted among luxury bag enthusiasts. Its sleek, boxy shape exudes a boyish allure, making it perfect for a more androgynous look. Ideal for adding an edge to your evening outfit!
The Boy Chanel comes in six sizes: Mini (18cm), Wallet on Chain (19cm), Small (20.5cm), Medium (25cm), Large (28cm), and XL (38cm). The XL Boy Chanel has long been discontinued.
3. 2.55 Flap
Karl Lagerfeld designed the Classic Flap in 1983, reinterpreting Coco Chanel’s 2.55 Flap from 1955. The differences lie in the strap, lock, and leather appearance. The Classic strap intertwines leather with metal chain links, while the 2.55 strap is a full metal chain. The Classic Flap features a CC turn-lock, while the 2.55 has a rectangular “Mademoiselle Lock”. Additionally, the 2.55 leather looks subtly worn with creases on the aged Calfskin surface, accentuating its vintage roots.
The sizing of the 2.55 is similar to that of the Classic Flap: it comes in sizes 224, 225, 226, 227 and 228, with dimensions like that of a Small to Maxi sizes of the Classic Flap style. However, the size 228 of 2.55 was discontinued and can only be found in resale markets.
4. Chanel 19 Flap
The Chanel 19, released in 2019, pays modern homage to Coco Chanel’s iconic 2.55 Flap design. Its slouchy, relaxed look complements casual and youthful outfits, offering more space than other bags of the same size. The chain is a mix of silver, ruthenium, and gold, and the clasp features an intertwined chain and leather pattern, reimagining the iconic CC logo turn-lock. However, note that the Chanel 19 requires greater care due to its softer, more fragile nature.
5. Wallet on Chain
The Wallet on Chain is a long wallet that doubles as a shoulder bag. Despite its small size, it can hold almost as much as a Medium Classic Flap. Versatile and elegant, it suits casual outings or dinner parties. As the bag itself is a wallet, it provides more interior space for your essentials!
Picking Suitable Materials & Colours
Now we know more about the sizes and styles of bags available to us, let’s delve into materials and colours. While these choices seem to only affect a bag’s appearance, in truth, it also determines the level of care required to keep your bag in tiptop condition.
Chanel offers a variety of leathers, with their most popular options being Lambskin and Caviar. However, some of the less popular leathers might be available depending on your choice of bag – especially so in the secondhand resale market.
Lambskin is a plush, smooth leather with a soft sheen, exuding luxury to anyone who sees it. Despite requiring delicate care, it offers a wide range of colors, including deep blacks and glowing whites. If you prioritize depth of color and are willing to protect your bag diligently, Lambskin is an excellent choice.
Caviar leather is much hardier and resistant to wear compared to Lambskin. It’s made of grained Calfskin with a pebbled finish, resulting in a stiffer and more rigid bag structure. While Caviar bags still need care, they are an excellent option for everyday wear. Be cautious with light-colored Caviar bags as they can be susceptible to color transfer.
Calfskin, when untreated, acts as a sort of middle ground between the Lambskin and Caviar leathers, being smoother to the touch that Caviar but still more resistant to scratches than Lambskin. An alternative to untreated Calfskin is the aged Calfskin, which is used on the 2.55 Reissue Flaps to provide a more vintage, used feel while still being durable and smooth to the touch.
Apart from the common leather types mentioned earlier, other unique materials include patent, goatskin, deerskin, exotic leathers, tweed, canvas, denim, and velvet. Patent leather stands out with its glossy, high-shine finish but requires constant maintenance. Goatskin falls between Lambskin and Caviar in terms of feel, look, and durability, making it a great material for bags. Deerskin and exotic leathers are more commonly found in vintage items listed on the resale market.
Fabric materials like tweed, canvas, and denim are popular and often revisited by customers as they enhance outfit styling. On the other hand, velvet requires the highest maintenance and is less mentioned in the market due to its low popularity.
Chanel bags offer a wide range of colors, from lights to darks, neutrals, and even bright patterns! All-time favorites are the timeless neutrals, including black, white, and beige, as they complement various outfits. Seasonal and bright colors accentuate individual styles and are often used for special occasions and bolder outfit pairings.
Pairing the Right Hardware
By now, you likely have a good idea of how your bag will look, considering we’ve discussed style, size, material, and color! But don’t forget to consider how the bag’s chains, clasps, zips, and screws tie into its overall look. Chanel hardware comes in various colors, each giving off a unique vibe. Gold and silver are the most frequently discussed hardware options.
For those purchasing their first bags, gold hardware is the most popular choice, offering a classic and versatile appearance. It exudes elegance and pairs well with a wide variety of outfits. Shiny gold, brushed gold, and antique gold are the different types of gold hardware used. Shiny gold represents the original timeless style, while brushed gold radiates femininity, making it ideal for softer outfit looks. Collectors often favor the charming antique gold for its unique retro vibes.
Silver hardware adds a touch of bling to your outfits, creating understated elegance. Its cool hue contrasts beautifully with jewel tones, bright colors, and tweeds, making it ideal for those with cooler skin tones compared to the warmer tones of gold. Shiny silver is perfect for formal occasions, while matte silver suits casual events, offering a relaxed vibe. Ruthenium, with its gunmetal material, gives off an edgier look and serves as a chic accessory to complete your overall style.
Indeed, making a luxury purchase requires serious consideration as it involves various factors. Deciding on an item that will last for a long time and justify the significant investment is essential. This article aims to expand your knowledge on Chanel items and assist you in the decision-making process.
Here at EcoRing Malaysia, our experienced appraisers have dealt with a wide variety of items from various luxury brands. From Prada handbags to Hermes bag charms, all kinds of luxury items are bought in at the highest price possible.
Looking to sell your pre-loved branded items? WhatsApp us at wa.me/60122233614 with photos and details of your items for an estimated quotation!