The Most Iconic Gucci Bags

Every once in a while, a fashion house creates a bag that transcends time and trends, staying in style forever. Since it was founded in 1921, Gucci has delivered five. Both heritage designs (which have already been revived at least once) and new releases, they have gone down in history as the most iconic Gucci bags.

Photo by Edward Berthelot/Getty Images


Photo by Donell Woodson/Getty Images

Gucci Bamboo Bag 

Originally called the 0633 (after its item number), the Gucci Bamboo Bag was born out of necessity rather than fashion. 


Following WWII, there was a shortage of leather. As countries around the world rationed their resources, Gucci was confronted with a difficult decision: shut down or innovate. 


The house discovered that Japanese bamboo, which grew quickly and was easy to import, could be used as a substitute for leather. By heating an unblemished cane over an open flame, bending it into a semi-circular, saddle-inspired shape, coating it with multiple layers of lacquer, toasting it to achieve a brown finish, and cooling it to retain its new-found shape, bamboo could make a strong, rigid top handle. Due to the process, which has since been patented by Gucci, no two bamboo handles looked the same and the bag took around 13 hours to assemble. 


The Gucci Bamboo Bag debuted in 1947, but it remained popular well beyond the war. It was carried through the ‘80s by style setters like Elizabeth Taylor, Ingrid Bergman, Grace Kelly, and Princess Diana.


In 2010, creative director Frida Giannini pulled the Gucci Bamboo Bag from the archives, rereleasing it with a slightly larger frame and detachable leather shoulder strap and renaming it the New Bamboo. Again, it was favored by some of the biggest names of the time, including Beyoncé, Florence Welch, and Naomi Watts. 


Today, bamboo is a signature of the Italian house, representing its heritage of luxury craftsmanship. Just outside of Florence, artisans continue to handcraft bamboo handles and pieces for modern styles.

Gucci Advertisement 1960's. Photo by The Purse Blog

Photo by The Purse Blog

Gucci Advertisement 1960's. Photo by The Purse Blog


Linea a Disco Coated canvas Bag

Gucci Soho Disco

The Gucci Soho Disco was designed by then-creative director Frida Giannini in 2014. 


A camera style bag, it is compact and boxy. The Soho Disco is crafted of pebbled calfskin leather and features the interlocked ‘GG’ logo in tonal stitching, a top zipper closure, a tassel zipper pull, and two interior slip pockets. It is definitely not as over the top as the other iconic Gucci bags, but that is exactly why it is so loved. The Gucci Soho Disco is a stylish, yet practical crossbody that pairs well with any outfit and suits every occasion. 


While it was originally offered in a wide range of colors, the Gucci Soho Disco is only available in black and rose beige today. (To the dismay of many, the red was phased out just after Holiday 2018). 


As there are rumors the style will soon be discontinued altogether, the Gucci Soho Disco remains in high demand on the resale market – particularly in its retired colorways. 

Gucci soho Disco Bag. Photo by Gucci for The Purse Blog


Photo by Christian Vierig/Getty Images

Gucci Marmont 

The Gucci Marmont first appeared on the Fall/Winter 2016 Ready-to-Wear (From article by Vogue) runway, opening the show. Though it was a bubblegum pink crossbody set against an all-pink look, it stood out. 


The Gucci Marmont is crafted of matelassé chevron leather and features the new ‘GG’ logo in antique brass hardware. Redesigned by Alessandro Michele, the logo first debuted on the GG Marmont Belt, which was released the year prior in his very first collection as Gucci’s creative director. Inspired by a buckle the house made back in the ‘70s, Michele repositioned the ‘Gs,’ so they both face the same direction (always right) and overlap slightly. Michele says updating the house’s iconic logo was like “drawing on the Mona Lisa.”(From article by The Telegraph) Though the logo is the most distinctive detail on the Gucci Marmont, the bag also has a heart embroidered into its backside. 


While the crossbody, flap style is by far the most popular, the Gucci Marmont has been made into an entire line, including different silhouettes like a top handle bag, tote, belt bag, backpack, and bucket bag. It also comes in an array of colors and materials. 


Though it was only recently introduced, the Marmont has already become a Gucci classic. 



Photo by Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

Photo by Gucci


Gucci Jackie Shoulderbag

Gucci Jackie 

From the 1950s, this style was initially named the Fifties Constance. Reported to be the first-ever hobo bag, its silhouette reflects the free-spirited era it was created in. A large, slouchy tote with a top handle and piston lock, the Fifties Constance was marketed as unisex. But, it was America’s leading lady that thrust it into the spotlight. 


In 1961, after Jackie O. was pictured using the bag to shield herself from the paparazzi’s flashes, demand for it soared. It was later renamed the Gucci Jackie in her honor. 


Since, the Gucci Jackie has been refreshed by almost every creative director at the house. First by Tom Ford in 1999, then Frida Giannini in 2009, and most recently Alessandro Michele in his Fall/Winter 2020 Ready-to-Wear collection (From article by Vogue). 


As the stage revolved, giving the audience 360-degree views of each look, a familiar, beloved bag was on full display. Many of the models were accessorized with the Gucci Jackie, now referred to as the Gucci Jackie 1961 (an ode to the year the style really launched); however, it looked slightly different. Michele kept its trademark shape and closure lock, but gave it a modern makeover. The Gucci Jackie 1961 is slightly more structured and has a strap that can be extended to be worn crossbody; it is also available in three sizes (including Mini) and comes in a range of soft pastel hues. 


This time photographed on Michele’s muse Harry Styles, the latest rendition has reminded everyone that the Gucci Jackie is timeless. 

Photo by Courtesy of @tamumcpherson for Editorialist


Photo by Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

Gucci Dionysus

When Alessandro Michele was appointed Gucci’s creative director in 2015, he had already worked as a designer in the brand’s accessories department for around 8 years. As he was barely known at the time, no one predicted he would design an ‘IT bag’ from his very first womenswear collection…but he did. 


Michele unveiled the Gucci Dionysus, his first handbag for the house, in the Fall/Winter 2015 Ready-to-Wear (From article by Vogue) runway. Mixing historic and new codes, the bag was crafted of ‘GG’ Supreme (a coated canvas stamped with Gucci’s first signature print) and featured statement hardware (ushering in a contemporary trend in accessories). 


Its most noted detail, the Gucci Dionysus closes with an aged metal clasp that is tipped with two tiger heads. Inspired by Greek mythology, the bag is named after the god of agriculture, wine, and revelry, who was storied to have turned into a tiger to carry a nymph across the Tigris River. 


Since its initial reveal, Michele has created many kitschy variations of the Gucci Dionysus. Most notably, in what is now his signature ‘more is more’ style, he has embroidered the ‘GG’ Supreme with flowers, butterflies, snakes, and wasps, introducing the garden as a new motif for the house. 


As Michele’s reign continues, everyone wants to get their hands on his first hit, which has already (and last, but certainly not least) secured its spot among the most iconic Gucci bags of all time. 

Photo by The Fashion Fraction for Purse Bop

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Written by Anna Villani
Anna Villani is a fashion writer based in Copenhagen
The people pictured are not associated with The Archive
or The Vintage Bar, and do not endorse the products shown.