A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

Here are a few facts you probably didn’t know about this much-loved brand.

Posted on Apr 28th 2017

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

Here are a few facts you probably didn’t know about this much-loved brand.

Posted on Apr 28th 2017


It is one of the world's most recognisable and most popular luxury fashion brands...
(which explains why the classic canvas bags don’t last long on the Handbag Clinic shelves)
...But how much do you know about the much-loved Louis Vuitton?

We could spend days talking you through it's history but we've picked out the most important and fun facts for you to enjoy.

1. Where it all started

Louis Vuitton was a French designer whose name has become iconic in the fashion world. Although this brand is extremely popular today the brand started in 1854 and was a family run business for around 100 years. 

He began his fashion career as a personal box maker for Napoleon’s wife and changed luggage forever. Prior to the iconic flat-topped grey canvas Vuitton created luggage was leather, heavy and round topped meaning trunks could not be stacked. Vuitton created a light-weight stackable trunk which many consider as the birth of modern luggage.

 

In 1885, Louis Vuitton came to London and opened a store on Oxford Street and the brand popularity grew. Due to the fast incline of the brand's popularity Vuitton introduced the Damier pattern which stated "marque L. Vuitton déposée" or "L. Vuitton registered trademark" in English in an attempt to stop counterfeiting. 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

 

2.  The 1st ever Louis Vuitton Handbag

 

Vuitton opened a store on the world-famous Champs-Elysees in 1913 and then introduced its first “handbag” in 1932; the Louis Vuitton Noé.

 

Louis Vuitton Noé was actually created to hold bottles of champagne but is still a popular handbag, today. The biggest Noe in Louis Vuitton’s current line-up can still hold four bottles of champagne with their bases down and then a fifth inverted in the middle. 

 

We regularly see Noé’s at Handbag clinic both for repair and to be sold in store and are an extremely popular bag, especially for being 85 years old! 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

3. A Custom Order for Chanel

 

The Alma Bag was created as a special order for Coco Chanel herself by Gaston Vuitton, Louis Vuitton’s Grandson.

 

It is rumoured that the bag was first named simply 'The Square' due to its boxy shape.

 

The bag was then named 'The Champs Eleysees' after the famous road in Paris before Gaston finally settled on 'Alma' after the Alma bridge which connects two Parisian neighbourhoods.

 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

4. A Very Special Request

 

Audrey Hepburn was responsible for the creation of the first Speedy.

 

She fell in love with the brands Keepall luggage range and wanted a smaller version to carry round daily.

 

Due to her small frame, she requested the bag in a size which now is known as a Speedy 25, the smallest of the range.

 

The Speedy is one of the most popular Louis Vuitton bags to this date and we have Audrey to thank for this every day essential. 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton
 

5. The 1st Permanent Leather Collection 

 

The Epi Leather line was the first permanent collection of leather Louis Vuitton bags and was introduced in 1985.

 

The inspiration was taken from the original textured leather used in the 1920’s by the brand.

 

Women liked that the leather was hard wearing, waterproof and almost scratch proof which was a great selling point as ladies couldn’t just pop into their nearest Handbag Clinic to restore their bag. 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

6. A Run In with Britney

 

Although Louis Vuitton is regularly endorsed by celebrities and mentioned in several chart topping songs Britney Spears took it too far in her “Do Something” video by imitating the brand with our permission.

 

She was seen tapping her fingers on the dashboard of a Hummer which was covered in what appeared to be the Limited Edition Marumaki Cherry Blossom print.

 

Louis Vuitton simply stated “We don’t make dashboards” when questioned about the video and successfully sued MTV and Sony BMG, both fined $117,000 by a French Court in 2007. 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

7. Louis Vuitton Celebrates its 150th Anniversary

 

The LV name celebrated its 150th Anniversary in 2004 and opened stores throughout Europe, South Africa and also opened the 5th Avenue New York store.

 

Due to the brands popularity, it has grew a large celebrity following and has featured Madonna, Sean Connery, Angelina Jolie and the late David Bowie in its advertising campaigns. 

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton celebrates it's 150th anniversary

 

8. The Most Counterfeited Handbags

 

The Louis Vuitton brand is now a world-wide phenomenon and regularly counterfeited.

 

The brand has introduced several details over the years to combat fraudsters.

 

At Handbag Clinic we have a trained team of experts who can easily spot a fake Louis Vuitton, for more information as to how we authenticate Louis Vuitton please visit our guide on 'How To Spot Fake Louis Vuitton Monogram Handbags'

A Brief History of Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton bags are one of the most popular bags we stock at Handbag Clinic with the Louis Vuitton Neverfull only lasting around 10 minutes in a store or online before selling. 

 

We offer a huge range of Louis Vuitton products at Handbag Clinic and have new bags every week, you can view the bags available in store or online. 

 

If you have any problems with your Louis, we offer a range of handbag cleaning and restoration services, so get in touch.

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