WORDS BY NERYS D’ESCLERCS
Born in 1925 in the streets of Rome, the house of Fendi was founded as a luxury leather goods shop by Adele and Edoardo Fendi. Inherited by their five daughters – Paola, Anna, Franca, Carla and Alda – the house quickly established itself as a master of leather craftsmanship. Karl Lagerfeld joined in 1965 as Creative Director, launching a ready-to-wear line alongside the range of iconic handbags, resulting in the Italian powerhouse brand we know today. Following Lagerfeld’s death in 2019, Anna’s daughter, Silvia Venturini Fendi – who created the iconic Baguette shoulder bag in 1997 – took the helm.
A true mark of luxury and style, Fendi’s bags each have their own distinctive features, from the Peekaboo’s classic tote silhouette and the Baguette’s recognisable narrow shape, to Mon Tresor’s more casual bucket bag aesthetic and the Kan’s modern elements. More recently, the brand branched into designer backpacks, with some featuring the signature ‘Bag Bugs’ eye motif, as well as practical, versatile belt bags on delicate chain straps or leather straps. To help you build your own collection of masterpieces, we talked to Browns buying manager, Hollie Harding about Fendi’s most iconic bag styles, their signature features, and what you can fit in each.
The Fendi Peekaboo
This timeless tote was originally made from supple nappa leather with a top flip-lock fastening that revealed the internal compartments, lending it the ‘Peekaboo’ name. The style is often decorated with an all-over debossed monogram, either on the outer shell or in the compartments that peek through when the clasp is unlocked, and you can carry it by the rounded top handle or across the body with the detachable shoulder strap. ‘Peekaboo comes in various sizes, with the largest being a great everyday tote. It also has two compartments separated by a stiff partition, which is a removable inner pocket – so you can even use it to organize your things,’ says Harding. Whether you pack light and only need the essentials like your keys and phone, or need a bag to fit your laptop for the morning commute, there’s a Peekaboo for every occasion. ‘Peekaboo is a good everyday bag but also a statement in itself, so I would style it with a simple outfit: wide trousers, a T-shirt and some flat sandals or sneakers,’ adds Harding. On Farfetch, a Pre-Owned selection of Peekaboos includes styles in sleek, smooth leather or with a textured, pebbled exterior.
The Fendi Baguette
Launched in 1997, the Fendi Baguette became an icon of the 1990s, popularised by Sarah Jessica Parker when she adopted it as Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City, arguably making it Fendi’s first ‘It’ bag. ‘The baguette is slightly smaller than the Peekaboo, and although it has the appearance of being “mini” as it fits close to the shoulder, it is actually quite roomy and able to fit your essentials – phone and keys,’ says Harding. Decorated with an FF monogram clasp, the rectangular silhouette comes in sleek, smooth leather and in a wide range of colors, or with an all-over debossed monogram pattern (if you want to try out the logomania trend). The Baguette also comes in woven raffia designs, perfect for spring and summer, and in heavier materials such as printed canvas and cotton for fall and winter. ‘I would recommend the Baguette for an evening or event as it fits all the essentials but is neat enough in size to pair with a strappy dress and sandals, hand-carrying it using the top handle,’ suggests Harding. ‘It can also be worn over the shoulder or crossbody thanks to the detachable shoulder strap, so it works for a more casual look during the daytime.’ With today’s trends still heavily inspired by the 1990s, adding the Fendi Baguette to your bag collection is the perfect investment – shop a selection of pre-owned styles on Farfetch now.
The Fendi Backpack
Handbags and shoulder bags aren’t for everyone – Fendi allows you to go hands-free with its selection of backpacks. Embossed with the house’s iconic FF monogram, the silhouette comes with contrasting hardware for an elevated touch, and the multiple external and internal pockets will satisfy your need for organisation. ‘Fendi is great at creating smaller design features that have become signature, for example, the eyes on the backpack,’ says Harding on the iconic ‘Bag Bugs motif’. The Fendi mini backpack, meanwhile, makes for a quirky addition to your wardrobe: you can only fit the bare minimum, but its fun miniature shape will make a big impact on your outfit. Style it over trench coats when you’re on the go or with baggy jeans and dresses for a more casual day outfit.
The Fendi Purse
For those who love having a place for everything, Fendi’s range of purses – from the medium-sized flat clutches that are perfect for travel papers to continental wallets-on-a-chain for small change only – are what you’ve been missing. The range encompasses a variety of colors, color-block paneling and metallic finishes, or you can choose from the classic debossed brown and black FF monogram pattern – the contrasting silver-tone front flaps add a modern touch. These Fendi accessories include various fastenings, so you can match your Peekaboo’s flip-lock to your purse, or the Baguette’s monogram hardware to your wallet. Harding notes that the ‘FF logo metal clasps’ are now also iconic styles of the house. Whichever Fendi purse style you prefer, you’ll find your favorite on Farfetch.