The Story Behind the Lady Dior Bag, a Princess Diana Favorite

For a compact handbag, the Lady Dior packs a lot of history. Created in 1995 and named after Diana, Princess of Wales, it was blessed to her by Bernadette Chirac, the first lady of France at the time. She was so attached to it, in fact, that of all of Diana’s benefactions to style, from her Cover VIRGIN ATLANTIC sweatshirt and cycling films quintet to the off- the- shoulder “ vengeance dress ” she wore after news broke of her hubby’s infidelity, this may be her utmost enduring one. It’s a definitive illustration of how a celebrity and a brand can come together to produce a best- dealer.

A Dior immolation ever ago, the Lady Dior was hiding in plain sight until the most recent season of The Crown, in which it held its own against scene- stealing costumes and the leading lights of the British screen. Given the attention it garnered on social media, and the current move down from formless holdalls toward lower designs with provenance in every sew, it’s not surprising that the classic has been redefined. “ I wanted to do a kind of elaboration of this design, like a new object of desire, ” says Dior creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri of her decision to launch the Lady Dior95.22 edition. “ Nothing can be constructed, but everything can be redefined with fresh eyes. ”

For Chiuri, this meant softening the bag’s architectural shape and farther curving its handle to make it easier to carry. The original interpretation was designed by also Dior creative director Gianfranco Ferré, who was unwaveringly reverential to the marker’s author, Christian Dior. The stitching pattern, called “ cannage, ” alludes to the club chairpersons in the house’s old couture salon; the D I- O- R charms that hang from the handle which prophesied the trend for totes bedecked with novelties that came times latterly — are a nod to Monsieur Dior’s particular seductiveness with phylacteries and amulets. Chiuri has streamlined these rudiments, playing with new proportions, and is offering three bag sizes in different tones, with ruthenium or pale gold homestretches.

As important as it acknowledges the creative bootstrappers who came before her, the Lady Dior veritably much fits into Chiuri’s creative macrocosm. Its feminity and hard structure make it a beguiling blend of contradictions — a hallmark of Dior under her aegis . An intellectual among contrivers, Chiuri understands that a bag carries a lot further than camo and keys. As an investment of passion that’s visible to the world and whose contents are incredibly particular, it serves as a marker not only of status and taste, but also of identity.

Just as she has leaned on different bents in the history to communicate the poetry of her designs, Chiuri has tapped 11 transnational artists to interpret the Lady Dior bag as they see fit in two enterprise, Lady Dior As Seen By and Dior Lady Art. And while she claims not to have anyone specific in mind when designing, the faces for the advertising crusade — among them feminist pen Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, tennis player Emma Raducanu, and actors Anya Taylor- Joy, Dilraba Dilmurat, and most lately Jennifer Lawrence — suggest that she’s recognizing the accessory’s connection to exceptional characters. This does n’t mean, still, that they need to be in the public eye. As Chiuri says, “ It’s an compassionate bag that reflects the solicitations of any woman carrying it. ”

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