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  1. #1
    \(^.^)/ Jennifer's Avatar
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    Post WWD: Top 12 Designer Handbag Brands of 2007

    December 29, 2007

    WWD: Top 12 Designer Handbag Brands of 2007
    WWD recently published their top 12 picks for 2007, and I am so disappointed. I mean who did they interview? Label whores? When I think of last years best sellers, or even memorable bags that could have been found on the lists of thousands of handbag fans, I wouldn't pick a bag by some of the designers below. Coach number 1? How can that be. And Ralph Lauren? The only bag that comes to mind is the birkin-looking Ricky bag. I have nothing against the brands below, I'm a fan of a couple, but I don't think this list is very accurate.


    1 - COACH
    Number of respondents who selected this as a handbag brand with which they were familiar: 76 percent The $2.6 billion Coach hopes to double its volume to $5 billion over the next four to five years. In October, Lew Frankfort, chairman and chief executive officer, identified handbags selling for more than $400 as the company's "fastest-growing price segment." The company opened its first Coach Legacy store in October - one-quarter of the merchandise is exclusive to the new format, and the average price point is $425. President and executive creative director Reed Krakoff told WWD the prototype is a way for younger fashion-savvy types to experience the world of Coach


    2 - LOUIS VUITTON
    63 percent
    American artist Richard Prince's buzzed-about spring collaboration with Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton handbags was unveiled during Paris Fashion Week. Prince worked plenty of variations on the famed logo. "I started silk-screening the monogram," he told WWD in October. "I started stamping it. I took it apart. I cut it up. I splashed it around. I tried to abstract it in a way that you would still be able to recognize it." The French fashion house has taken a bold approach to its latest ad campaign by featuring former Russian president Mikhail S. Gorbachev as one of its new models.


    3 - GUCCI
    61 percent
    "If you want to own something unique that isn't like what everyone else has, Gucci is the way to go," commented one respondent in the survey. In May, WWD reported Gucci had tapped Mert Alas and Marcus Piggot to shoot an ad campaign solely dedicated to the season's must-have accessory: the Indy bag, a rigid frame-style single handle that features the engraved Gucci script logo, tassels with bamboo detail, metal plates and studs. The PPR-owned fashion house has been pushing the bag, which helped boost sales of Gucci Group's leather goods by 11 percent for the second quarter through June.


    4 - DOONEY & BOURKE
    56 percent
    The Norwalk, Conn.-based brand boasts a lower price point than many others in the top 12, with prices that range from $20 to $625. The company has been working to expand its consumer base by tapping young spokeswomen such as Emma Roberts, Mischa Barton, Lindsay Lohan and, most recently, "Heroes" teen sensation Hayden Panettiere. In her new role as spokeswoman, Panettiere was allowed to create her own "dream bag": Known as the Hayden bag, it is a large leather shoulder bag with puffy pleats and buckle closure, available in black, brown, red and white.


    5 - PRADA
    54 percent
    "It's always hip to wear Prada, no matter what - the fashion value of this brand always stands out," said Pedraza of the Luxury Institute. Nylon bags, ruched leather bags and others featuring the giant Prada logo are among the latest looks. With regard to luxury handbags rising in price and demand, a Prada spokeswoman told WWD in February, "Besides the growing demand for fine leather goods, there is also the complexity of several models, continuous design innovation and, last but not least, an increase in certain costs that cannot be reduced if you want to preserve the level of quality."


    6 - KATE SPADE
    48 percent
    No matter that husband-and-wife team Kate and Andy Spade exited the company this past summer (they remain on as board members), consumers remain attached to the brand name. Most likely, people associate the brand with its signature nylon handbags, but it is much more diverse: Latest looks include patterned and striped bags, leopard-print clutches, unstructured hobos and leather totes. Deborah Lloyd, Banana Republic's executive vice president of product design and development, was recently tapped to become co-president and creative director of the brand.


    7 - BURBERRY
    47 percent
    Though its signature plaid remains a staple in Burberry's handbag collection, Christopher Bailey is pushing accessories into a new realm. The fall collection consists of nylon quilted looks, gemmed clutches, quilted leather satchels with studded hardware and more. In November, WWD reported Burberry's first-half revenues rose 14.5 percent to 449 million pounds, or $899.5 million, from 392 million pounds, or $725.5 million, with some of the fastest growth coming from nonapparel categories. One of the biggest drivers behind sales was accessories, which grew 35 percent year-on-year.


    8 - FENDI
    45 percent
    It's an ongoing parade of "It" bags for Fendi, owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton. Coming off the heels of the Spy bag - a hit for the brand - this season is all about the To You bag, which features an origami-like closure. From new markets like Turkey to Qatar, Fendi is getting the word out globally. And following its show atop the Great Wall of China in October, chief executive Michael Burke noted the spring collection - which features clothes based on the Chinese symbol of happiness, and the relaunch of its iconic Baguette bag - is Fendi's most successful to date.


    9 - CHANEL
    45 percent
    "Chanel bags are beautiful, classic - the craftsmanship is superb, and they last forever," commented one respondent surveyed. In fact, Coco Chanel's quilted handbag is possibly one of the most iconic bags to this day. Lately, the brand has offered styles such as the Coco Cabas, which launched more than a year ago. The bag, which comes in vinyl, leather and satin, features the Chanel chain handles, a signature double C charm and the double C etched into its side.


    10 - RALPH LAUREN
    45 percent
    WWD reported in October that the company has been making major strides in accessories, driven partly by the Ricky bag. Buffy Birrittella, executive vice president in charge of women's design and advertising, told WWD, "It was the hardest thing to come up with a bag he [Ralph] felt was the 'It' bag for him - not just the 'It' bag of the season, but an iconic Ralph Lauren bag." Consumers are certainly getting the designer's vision. Respondents liked the versatility of the handbags. "There's always an occasion to use my Ralph Lauren bag - it's got style and it's timeless," said one luxury consumer.


    11 - DOLCE & GABBANA
    37 percent
    "I have one of these bags and the craftsmanship is quite extraordinary - so is the variety of styles," said one respondent in the survey. The latest fall looks from Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana's handbags include the Borsa A Spalla leather bag, which features silver hardware and a shining removable chain strap; the Metallic Leather Tote, specially textured and finished with a metallic sheen, and the Washed Calfskin Buckle leather bag, which has topstitching and gold-tone hardware.


    12 - HERMES
    36 percent
    In June, Hermés opened a flagship on Broad Street near Wall Street in Manhattan, which offers everything from its famed saddles to brightly patterned bikinis designed by the house's creative director for women's ready-to-wear, Jean Paul Gaultier. Leather goods, including the company's best-selling and most iconic products, the Kelly and Birkin handbags, are at the nave of the store. Although the two items are decades old for Hermés, some 80 percent of its 50,000 stockkeeping units are renewed seasonally, ceo Patrick Thomas told WWD in October.

  2. #2
    fashion is my life HauteCouture's Avatar
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    Default Re: WWD: Top 12 Designer Handbag Brands of 2007

    who did they interview? Label whores?
    I was about to say the same thing. This list is awful, not accurate what-so-ever.

  3. #3
    Moderator/Blogger VivaLaJuicy's Avatar
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    Default Re: WWD: Top 12 Designer Handbag Brands of 2007

    This list is all wrong!!!!!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: WWD: Top 12 Designer Handbag Brands of 2007

    I'm reading these "it must be wrong" comments and laughing like hell. Yes Jennifer, WWD's ratings are accurate from a strict business standpoint. I own 5 genuine bags of the top 12 listed, and 2 others that are inspired replicas.

    I've been following the profit margins of these 12 companies in business articles. So far, Coach has had the highest return on investment of all the companies listed. Popular demand, customer recognition, high yield, consistent earnings over time, and product innovation have put these companies on top of their game. Their bags are well-distributed in stores to maximize buyer access. The "overexposure" and "mainstream" qualities that fashionistas hate about these companies and their bags have made them highly successful in the marketplace. You will never see an indie "It Bag" appear on the top 12. "Last year's best sellers" and "memorable bags" that appear on the lists of 1,000 handbag elitists are a tiny drop in a huge market basket.

    Did you know Levis jeans is still among the top 10 most frequently searched brands on the Internet, in this age of luxury denim?
    Last edited by lauermar; February 17th, 2008 at 12:00 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: WWD: Top 12 Designer Handbag Brands of 2007

    YAY for Prada!

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