Handbag advice from the 1960s

melisande

O.G.
Jan 20, 2006
5,204
110
From "Elegance" by Genevieve Antoine Dariaux.:lol:

"It is indispensable to own a complete set of accessories in black, and, if possible, another in brown, plus a pair of beige shoes and a beige straw handbag for summer. With this basic minimum, almost any combination is attractive.

Of course, it would be ideal to have each set of accessories in two different versions: one for sport and the other for dressy. And in this regard I cannot restrain myself from expressing the dismay I feel when I see a woman carry an alligator handbag with a dressy ensemble merely because she has paid an enormous sum of money for it. Alligator is strictly for sports or travel, shoes as well as bags, and this respected reptile should be permitted to retire every evening at 5 PM.

And here, as in no other department, quality is essential. Be strict with yourself. Save. Economise on food if you must (believe me, it will do you good!) but not on your handbags or shoes. Refuse to be seduced by anything that isn't first-rate. The saying, "I cannot afford to buy cheaply" was never so true. Although I am far from rich, I have bought my handbags for years from Hermes, Germaine Guerin and Roberta. And, without exception, I have ended by givng away all the cheap little novelty bags that I found irresistable at first. The same is true of shoes and gloves."
 

Tuesday

Even my bag has a bag
Oct 3, 2005
159
0
Michigan
Lol. Hey, I love handbags as much as the rest of you but no way am I sacrificing food quality for anything else.
That's obsession #1 in my book.
 

amanda

I Bleed Georgia Red
Oct 18, 2005
11,341
15
34
New York City
www.purseblog.com
i agree about everything except the alligator, lol.

i think they should replace that with "we know you paid a ton for your LV, but it's still brown. it does not go with a black suit and black shoes just because it wasn't cheap."
 

purselova34

Member
Jan 15, 2006
1,988
3
NJ
I agree with some of those things. hehe I think time have changed, though, so it doesn't all apply. I wonder what the same author would say now? lol
 

melisande

O.G.
Jan 20, 2006
5,204
110
Yes -- it's funny stuff, yet some of it is still true to this day! I have to say that I wouldn't mind having complete accessories in black and in brown, actually. I'd probably mix them up, all over the place and not really wear them together all the time, but it definitely is a practical proposition. I don't wear hats much, though!

The book is so cute -- it's this vintage guide to looking elegant. And it's had a bit of a revival, recently, because a woman wrote a best-selling novel that is based on the vintage dress guide. The new novel is also called 'Elegance' and I was reading it, and that's how I came across this!
 

melisande

O.G.
Jan 20, 2006
5,204
110
Also, I thought the bit about starving yourself for your bags was rather amusing. Don't we still talk about that?

And we all, pretty much, love and admire quality bags, on this forum!

Poor alligator, though. I had no idea. And to .. sports? I guess it means to Ascot, or something. Or to watch Polo.
 

angelica

Ladybug Lucy
O.G.
Feb 13, 2006
2,648
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Where it never snows
That's too funny. I agree on having black/straw accessories, etc. But there's no way I'm going to "economise on food" in order to buy a purse. I haven't eaten hot dogs/ramen noodles since college and don't plan on too any time soon lol. I could just see the look on my husband's face when I say, "Sorry, darling, it's bread and water tonight because I need a damier speedy!" ;)
 

Selena

O.G.
Jan 26, 2006
14,045
31
I would totally skip food for a bag! Wouldnt even bat an eye.
Skinny bod and a cute bag what can be better then that!!!!

Selena
 

purselova34

Member
Jan 15, 2006
1,988
3
NJ
angelica said:
That's too funny. I agree on having black/straw accessories, etc. But there's no way I'm going to "economise on food" in order to buy a purse. I haven't eaten hot dogs/ramen noodles since college and don't plan on too any time soon lol. I could just see the look on my husband's face when I say, "Sorry, darling, it's bread and water tonight because I need a damier speedy!" ;)
Bread AND water?! Lucky man :nuts: lol
 

melisande

O.G.
Jan 20, 2006
5,204
110
I'm sure an old fashioned women's book would never, ever advocate feeding a husband bread and water.
The theme of these books is always make the husband's life easier, and have a hot, nutritioius meal ready no matter what!
 

pseub

Bonne vivante
O.G.
Oct 24, 2005
4,036
7
Los Angeles
www.unefemme.net
I have this book and found it most entertaining. Most of the fashion rules were still in place when I was a child (never mixing black and brown, hat and shoes should match, etc.). Some of the guidelines seem a bit stodgy now, but I think many of them still hold up.