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February 1955 was a big year in the history of fashion and in the history of Chanel. It was the year the 2.55 Chanel Handbag was released, the bag that would become the most widely recognizable handbag ever.

Controversy ensued when the bag was initially released bag in 1955 (also why the bag is called 2.55 (Feb, 1955)). It was the first ever bag for women that came with a shoulder strap, something very different when compared to the go to bag at the time, the clutch bag.

Considered “too out there”, “against the norm” and by some people, simply outrageous, it still continued to entice women into buying it because of the practicality it afforded.

At the time, Gabrielle Chanel herself, loved the fact that you could slip both hands into your coat pockets, leaving her free to do what she needed, not having to worry about constantly holding her bag.

The 2.55 was a fashion changer and instantly became handbag must have and icon.

Below is key date timeline, a history of the Chanel 2.55

  • 1929 – Chanel designs her first handbag with short chain straps and jersey quilted fabric for herself.
  • 1955 – At age 70, Chanel releases the first Chanel 2.55 Flap bag for sale in Chanel boutiques
  • 1971 – Coco Chanel dies
  • 1983 – Karl Lagerfeld joins Chanel as Artistic Director
  • 1984 – Karl Lagerfeld redesigns the CC lock, creates the “Classic” flap bag with an interlocking CC turn lock
  • 2005 – Chanel releases the original 2.55 Quilted Handbag for its 50th Anniversary, and calls it the Reissue 2.55.

The Chanel 2.55 was the first bad created that took women’s everyday needs into mind and was filled with details that allowed women to take advantage of it.

The chain strap was easily doubled up and little hidden zip pocket was ideal for storing personal items, or even, as was reported at the time, perfect for hiding love letters. The slip pocket at the back was made for money, while the centralised compartment in the bag, was perfectly designed for women’s lipstick.

Not only was the Chanel 2.55 a gamechanger within the world of women’s fashions, but was also a gamechanger within the world of the brand itself. It was the first bang to introduce two of Chanel’s lasting signatures; the deep burgundy hue of the interior was inspired by the designer’s childhood uniform at the Aubazine Abbey orphanage, and the diamond-stitched quilting was borrowed from the jackets worn by men at the races.

Here at Timeless Vintage, we are honoured to be able to sell the Chanel 2.55’s and offer these two our customers. Not only is it one of the worlds most iconic and sexiest bags, but it is also a piece of history.

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