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Gown-Like Clutches

Marchesa Incorporates Corsets into Its Accessories

— September 2, 2009 — Luxury
Luxury fashion house Marchesa is launching its first accessories collection. This is not something new in and of itself (as accessories lines by high-profile fashion designers are a dime a dozen), but what sets Marchesa’s collection of 28 evening cases apart is its use of design details typically attributed to the house’s exalted line of evening gowns.

For instance, elaborate beading, rosettes (a Marchesa hallmark), and corsetry – embellishments and ornate details usually found on a Marchesa red-carpet frock – adorn the pieces, giving each a dramatic flair in which the purse is as much a focal point as the dress.

At $1000 to $5000 a pop, it better be.

“We thought, ‘Let’s approach it the way we approach a dress,’” says Georgina Chapman, the co-founder of Marchesa.

One black satin clutch features symmetrical silk pleating to resemble a turban, while the interiors of the bags are crafted with grosgrain ribbon detail, like that of a corset. Exotic skins, including alligator, crocodile, and lizard, make appearances in the collection as well, and every purse is finished with a hand-cut rock crystal. Also, each handbag is supposedly big enough to house your BlackBerry, makeup, and keys.

“We were frustrated because we couldn’t find [an evening] bag to fit it all,” said Keren Craig, Marchesa’s other founder.

While the handbags do coordinate back to the house’s collection of dresses, Chapman assures they could be worn from day to night. Chapman notes, “Some people don’t always have an occasion for a gown. You could wear these with jeans and a T-shirt.”

Well, after that kind of purchase, jeans and a tee would be all you could afford!