We’ve seen them parading through fashion week, and lusted over them at brunch when a friend walks in with a new one… oh, and we’ve also been caught calculating out loud how to justify buying two! Yes StyleBlazer’s, we’re talking about the most coveted item of late; the designer mini bag. It seems as though the evergreen and iconic shaped bags we know and love, have been even more popular in their more-dinkier versions.
High-end brands like Fendi, Gucci and Dior are making smaller sized bags, with a lower price point to appeal to a whole new target market. That audience, are fashion-savvy millennials who are keen to own designer brands but don’t have the cash to fork out for the lust-worthy life-size models, as these life-size models have substantially increased in price over the past five years.
The concept of luxury brands going small to make it big, is an interesting talking point in the industry at the moment, and can be looked at from two separate angles.
Number one; high-end businesses want to appeal to a larger demographic as more and more youngsters are coveting high fashion. Design what you normally do, but make it smaller so it’s cute, and cut the price tag in half. However, is this new commerce pattern making these companies more money?
According to the Business Of Fashion, these hot-cake items are not all in vain: “Retailers such as Selfridges, Saks Fifth Avenue and Barneys are also tapping the trend, and have launched dedicated mini bag sections on their e-commerce sites… Online searches for mini handbags increased by 50 percent year-on-year.”
On the other hand, you have the young and the restless —much like us— who want to get their hands on a, for example, Fendi Micro Peek-A-Boo (mini bag) for the novelty and thrill of it, but still need to think twice about the price tag as these bad boys retail for $1,200 and up. Comparatively to the regular sized Peek-A-Boo which costs $3,950, which is three times more. Or a Saint Laurent, Classic Nano Sac De Jour priced at $1,990 versus the larger one (named Classic Small Sac De Jour) for $2,890. Even though they’re worth it, and we’re still out there buying them, the brands have done well in enticing us in, as they are for want of a better phrase, so cute!
The desirability for these iconic bags in their little-sister-sizes is what is helping mini bag sales fly through the roof. If this trend were to continue then what becomes of the once-upon-a-time handbag, and the brand’s profit margins? Are they still making money? Last quarter, Prada reported a loss with their share prices plummeting.
Prada’s sales fell to 46.5 million euros ($51.1 million) in the three months through from 74.5 million euros ($82.1 million). Numbers may well be scary but they do not lie. Swiftly after, Prada announced that they will launch a lower-priced, full-size handbag line with retail prices starting at approximately $1,125. This is may be another pattern to watch out for, as it may be the only way to start selling through the original bag shape again, and attract the swayed attention once and for all.
We don’t know how long the much-loved mini bag will be around, and we sure as hell are not done with it yet. However, it is interesting to see how much our buying habits, dream lists and wardrobe desires play a role in what designers do and make next.
After all, we’re kind of responsible for starting this trend. #SorryNotSorry
Scroll through our gallery below to see which mini bags we cannot help but love!