At the beginning, the first handbags had a purely practical vocation : they contained food and looked more like bundles with fur (grrrr) than our today’s handbags. Then used in the Antics by slaves to carry out their master things, they kept their practical apsect until the Middle Ages. In fact, their clothes didn’t had pockets so, at the Middle Ages, a handbag is a purse knotted at the waist with all the things you need : food, tissues, tools, money.
Step by step, bags are covered with ornaments and embroideries and became the proprety of women of high society.
It is around the 17th century that pockets arrived on clothes. The handbag is forgotten.
This “pocket revolution” give to women a need to always keep their things on her. This habit became a moral. At that time, every clothes have pockets. However, when the dress became fashion in the 1790’s, the handbag reappears as an evidence.
At the 19th century, the handbag become a fashion accessory since it matches with the outfit. Unlike jewelry, it is a symbol of the social status.
Moreover, the bourgeoisie wants to travel and needs something to carry their belongings : luggages start to appears.
In the 20’s, the handbag get smaller and only containa lipstick and a pack of cigarette : all you need to have a perfect night at the Charleston’s era.
In the 30’s, the clutch became the fashionistas iconic accessory.
During World War II, traditionals handbags are sent to military services in order to take back the leather and reinforce soldiers uniforms. Until the 50’s, handbags are only made with canva. the leather will become again the ladies favorite material.
In the second part of World War II, this fashion accessory will remained privileged for most women.
Today, we find all kind of types of bags in every sizes, shapes, colors, materials !
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