I still vividly remember Dior‘s Saddle Bag back in its heyday when I was in my teens. Since its introduction by John Galliano in Spring/Summer 2000, it quickly became an “It bag” which morphed into a Dior classic. Perhaps seeing numerous variations of it on Sarah Jessica Parker’s character Carrie, in Sex and the City, helped catapult its fame. Whatever the reason though, it was a super “hot item” – a staple that everyone coveted, and needed to have in their closet.
The most popular was the classic monogram version, or the Oblique, in Dior speak, which, over the years, came in various colours: burgundy, black, and even with mini versions in baby pink and blue in coated jacquard, often sporting the racing stripe with numbers “2” and “3” for a sportier vibe. There were also those in leather, as well as luxurious exotic skins, particularly ostrich. The Saddle was so popular, that Dior introduced the Double Saddle in its later collections. Despite its high demand, it disappeared from the Maison’s shelves a couple of years later.
And now, for Autumn/Winter 2018, Creative Director Maria Grazia Chiuri has revived the iconic Saddle. When I first saw the bag coming down Dior’s AW18 runway, my heart literally skipped a beat. I mean, we all know that fashion is cyclical, and at some point, a return of a past trend is inevitable. But, never would I have expected the revival of the Saddle – I’m sure I wasn’t the only one. At this very moment, I instantly regretted giving mine away, instead of keeping it in my closet. I guess there’s a bright side to being a hoarder, sometimes, and this is certainly one of them.
Like its ancestor, the new Saddle also comes in 2 sizes – a mini, and a regular – and is available in monochrome leather, in a 1970s-inspired patchwork bearing the inscriptions Peace and Love Dior, and in Oblique canvas embellished with 9 pieces of finely-beaded hand-embroidery in bright and contrasting colours. The bags come with short plain leather strap, but I’d encourage you to jazz it up with the new ethnic strap (available for purchase separately) which comes with fringing and metal pieces, which allows you to carry the bag crossbody style.
I thought this collection would be an opportunity to revive its timeless beauty. I consider this icon of the House’s recent history the perfect accessory to deal with this battle that is daily life. Indeed, the Saddle Bag is a bag that is worn in exactly the same way as a shirt or jacket, and it’s so comfortable to wear with its long strap that you almost forget it’s there. The Saddle Bag is also practical because it allows you to carry everything you need with you. It’s for this reason that I wanted it larger and more robust, but also very colourful, embroidered or with beaded fringe because, like a chameleon, it adapts to all situations ~ Maria Grazia Chiuri ~
Images courtesy of Dior