In the modern history of luxury fashion, the Celine bag is a must-have grail

During the 1990s and early aughts (2000s), the “It bag” was a repeating cycle that captivated the fashion world. It may have started with Prada’s iconic black nylon accessories, soon to be followed by hysteria-inducing designs like the Fendi Baguette, Balenciaga City, and Louis Vuitton Monogram Multicolor.

Over the years and throughout the seasons, designers attempted to recreate the hysteria that seemed to follow anything that Carrie Bradshaw wore in Sex and the City or appeared on the arm of one of the Real Housewives.

Of course, throughout all of this and flying a few notches above any trends are the truly timeless staple shapes, like the Chanel Classic Flap and Hermès Birkin. Though less flashy, less instantly-recognizable, and less costly, the Celine bag in various forms has too become a closet staple for any luxury-lover.

Phoebe Philo – The Classic

In 2008, Celine chose Pheobe Philo as its creative director, a post she held for ten years, during which time the brand became the stylish It-girl’s alternative to more mainstream, flashier labels. It’s also during Philo’s tenure that Celine released many of its iconic handbag designs, which are now in high-demand either as carryover designs or as second-hand finds.

celine classic box bag light blue italist

The most famous Celine bag is ‘the Classic,’ a structured shoulder bag with a long strap that can be worn crossbody and is made with supple but sturdy box calfskin.

They are so popular that we frequently get them in-stock and then they sell right back out again. The current Classic iteration comes in a summery woven raffia with brown calfskin trim.

Raffia is a huge handbag trend this year, so Celine has several iterations: a chain-handle bucket tote, and a quintessential beach bag with a phrase outlined in black paillettes: “I have nostalgia for things I have probably never known.” Both are pictured below.

Hedi Slimane – The 16

Since Hedi Slimane took over creative direction of the label in 2018, other new Celine bag icons have emerged. The most notable might be the ’16’ top-handle bag, which has a slightly more formal overall design and is made with a grained (rather than smooth) calfskin and silver or golden hardware (below middle).

Celine bag 16 sixteen handbag hedi slimane

Like other Celine bag models, the 16 also comes in and out of stock regularly. Right now we have it in a very light blue, almost gray color with silver hardware, though black, red, and other colors are often available.

A Full Lineup

Along with a grail Celine bag, the line is a complete collection of leather goods, ready to wear, accessories, and shoes for women and men.

Though trends change season-to-season, Hedi Slimane’s job now is to redefine the core tenets of Celine’s brand, which is centralized around the idea of “bourgeois Parisian” with a touch or two of rock and roll.

celine ss20 spring summer 2020 hedi slimane womenswear
celine ss20 spring summer 2020 hedi slimane womenswear

Thus, you’ll find thoroughly wearable staples for your inner French chick like heeled sandals, above-the-knee boots, patterned long dresses, utilitarian denim jackets, and dangly earrings.

For men, the aesthetic is similar. City staples like logo sweatshirts mingle with resort-ready canvas backpacks and simple canvas sneakers, an expression of the brand’s effortless luxury attitude.

celine ss20 spring summer 2020 hedi slimane menswear

The Perfect Celine Bag Sidekick

Should you find yourself in the lucky possession of a classic Celine bag example, the natural accompaniment is a pair of Celine glasses.

celine eyewear italist

Whichever model you choose, they’ll be bold, ladylike, and along with your Celine bag, something to cherish over the years.

Discover more Accessories stories: Daniel Lee and the new Bottega Veneta, BY FAR bags and shoes, and the best designer eyewear, now on italist.

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