You’ll have to forgive me for that hyperbolic headline. I usually despise any article that proclaims something as perfect, or the BEST EVA or some other obviously exaggerated superlative, especially if it’s about fashion. But in this case, I’m pretty bowled over, so I think it’s justified.
When I clapped eyes on the three beauties dangling, seemingly floating in midair, in the photo on the Business of Fashion spotlight email last Thursday, I experienced that particular kind of wide-eyed, increased heart rate excitement that the first glimpse of an exceedingly covetable consumer product elicits.
The product in question is a Golden Lane Duo Satchel, one of the Spring/Summer collection from Chris Liu and Tibor Matyas, who started out as luxury men’s accessories brand Chris & Tibor. Now, they’ve branched out to cater for ladies too, and the result is their signature leather satchel, available in a range of colours.
Why is a Golden Lane satchel so good?
First off, it’s big enough to cart around all the stuff a modern woman needs on a day to day basis, but is cleverly designed with dual pockets to compartmentalise all that ephemera efficiently. The long and short handles make it easy to wear across the body (when you’re running for the bus/on your bike/carrying a bunch of coffees) or over the shoulder (in cramped Tube cars when pick pockets are on the loose). But most of all, it looks so darn good. The shape is classic enough that it won’t go out of style any time soon, but unusual enough that it doesn’t look like it’s trying to be a Birkin or some other much-copied designer handbag. Plus, there’s a colour for everyone: as well as classic black and ivory there are sugary pastels, punchy aqua tones and shiny metallic colourways in the Spring collection, all in the signature Golden Lane design.
Those handy design features weren’t just an accident either. Liu and Matyas did lots of consumer research on their prototypes, discovering that 85 per cent agreed the Golden Lane satchel was a practical bag. The only problem, in my view, is the price. Starting at about £400, the Golden Lane satchel is in a decidedly luxury price bracket. While it’s nothing compared to the astronomical heights of a $34,000 Row backpack, for example, it’s still probably more than I spend on clothes in a year (I’m very frugal for a fashion blogger you see).
So for now I’ll have to pop the Golden Lane satchel on my ‘when I’m rich’ mental wishlist (admit it, you’ve got one too.) The brand will be showing at the exhibition at London Fashion Week, so I’ll definitely be going along to gaze adoringly at and gently fondle a sample in the flesh.