Roughly 150 years ago, a brilliant scientist named Charles Darwin wrote a book. This book was the Origin of Species, and it was destined to become one of the foundations of modern thought. In this book, he laid out in great detail his revolutionary theory of natural selection, and explained a general outline of how every species came to be.
What you may not have considered, however, is that this system of spelling out also applies to other areas. For example, handbags. If you consider the history of each of the major fashion designers, it can be difficult to see any common ground. However, it is not that hard to find a sequence common to all of them. And so, without further ado, I present The Origin Of Handbags!
First, start with a dream. Almost all of the current major labels, such as Fendi or Chloe, started with a single woman opening a clothing shop. Naturally, of course, not every major designer begins quite the same way. Gucci, for instance, started with a man opening a shop, not a woman. Sometimes they begin by selling clothing, sometimes not, but always the founder discovers an unforeseen sense of fashion within themselves.
Shortly after their shop begins to succeed, the founder begins creating new and original fashions. At this point, they have a small shop in a big city, and begin to display their wares. Many people crash and burn here, or simply fail to attract the right attention, but for the soon-to-be major label designer, they quickly draw the attention of the cities fashion-conscious. Here, excellent business sense, and a significant amount of persistence, are needed to lift them to the top.
while some may struggle initially, such as Guess did, when trying to get their jeans into shops, others are immediately successful- such as Ralph Lauren’s ties. In any case, as soon as the public gets hold of their work, they very swiftly rise in fame. Within the founders lifetime, they see international recognition, and decide to expand their company.
This is where the handbag arises. The label, having now reached some degree of renown, begins to expand… perfumes are created, new fashions conceived, and they begin to sell handbags. Each label develops a distinctive look, to match their previous clothing design, and their handbags enter shops.
Whether you favour a classic Diego Rocha, or an elegant Prada, you cannot deny that each brand has its own look, it’s own feel, it’s own rare style to it. While everyone needs to wear clothes, handbags are optional, an accessory, and as such they are a blank canvas on which the designers work their magic, the one place they can be truly innovative and original.
In time, the original creator of the company passes away, and control of the brand is passed to his or her children. Sometimes they fight amongst themselves, as Aldo and Rodolfo Gucci did, or work peacefully together, as did the daughters of Adele Fendi. In any case, the label remains within the family. They continue to design ever more works of fashion, and the sales — and prices — of their handbags rise.
Once they have achieved international renown, not to mention uncountable awards, there is no where left to rise to- they are already at the top. By now, of course, the brand is a commonly spoken name, and everyone knows them. Usually the founder as, well, although not always. Could anyone, ever, hope to rival the fantastic designs and glamorous life of Roberto Cavalli? I hardly think so, save perhaps, by another designer…
This brings me to the end of my article, and my general description of the evolution of the labels behind the handbags. I hope I’ve entertained you, and possible even educated you slightly, but in any case I leave you with a question to ponder- is there anything else, that follows a similarly general pattern?