Last month, I shared my latest designer handbag purchase: the Chanel Classic Flap Bag in red, and received a ton of messages about it. In general, I get asked a lot of questions about my designer bag collection, but Chanel often sparks so much interest because the bags are much pricer and harder to get a hold of when compared to other popular designer brands. Not only that but the Chanel Classic Flap bag has been around forever, making it one of the few tried-and-true classics that remains as popular as ever. This bag also retains its value incredibly well – often increasing in price every year. It’s no surprise that so many of you are interested in this bag.
I put together a full and honest review to answer the most common questions I get – and to help you decide if it’s worth investing in. Most of you know that I also have a pre-owned Chanel Classic Flap Bag in black, which Phil bought for me as a wedding gift years ago. However, today’s review will be specifically about my new red flap!
Keep scrolling for my full review of the Chanel Classic Flap Bag and my answers to the most frequently asked questions…
Which Chanel Bag Did You Buy?
I purchased the Chanel 2.55 10″ Double Flap Bag in red lambskin leather. For reference, it’s the 20S version. This bag is one of Chanel’s most popular pieces because of its simplistic, feminine design – and because it’s available in various materials, colors, sizes, and hardware combinations. There are two variations of the Classic Flap: the double or single flap. Chanel no longer produces the single, but you can still purchase pre-owned styles through consignment shops. Personally, I prefer the double flap because I like the added protection of the interior flap, which closes off the interior. This bag comes with a versatile leather strap chain, which can be shortened to wear over the shoulder or lengthened for a longer drop (seen above).
What’s The Best Size To Go With?
In general, the size of a handbag is a very personal decision based on one’s lifestyle, anticipated use for the bag, and preference. I ended up going with the medium size, which measures 6 in x 10 in x 2.5 in. I like that it’s not too big or too small, making it a versatile pick for any occasion, including evening events. It’s also roomy enough for all your daily essentials, including a phone, wallet, toiletries, small notepad, and keys. The Chanel Classic Flap bag also comes in mini, small, jumbo, and maxi sizes, but I didn’t feel that I would get as much use out of them.
What’s Best – Caviar Or Lambskin?
The Chanel Classic Flap bag comes in various leathers, but the two most popular are caviar or lambskin. Some people prefer the caviar leather because it’s so durable and can handle more wear and tear. The leather is pebbled and maintains its structure well because of the rigid nature.
Lambskin, on the other hand, is said to be more delicate than caviar and can lose its shape over time. However, I’ve never had any issues with my first Chanel flap bag. I feel that lambskin looks and feels more luxurious than caviar as it has a slight gloss to it. Plus, I just love the soft, supple feel of it. As long as you properly care for your bag, I don’t think you’ll have an issue with lambskin. I always recommend storing the bag in the dust bag with the chains tucked inside when you’re not using it.
If you’re looking to buy your first Chanel bag, it’s best to go into the store or a consignment shop so you can thoroughly inspect the materials in person before making a commitment.
What Hardware To Go With?
Chanel bags are most commonly available with silver, gold, or champagne (light gold) hardware. You really can’t go wrong with any of them, but I’m partial towards gold and champagne. There’s just something about gold tones that feels instantly luxe and makes an outfit look so expensive. My red Chanel flap comes with the champagne-colored hardware, which I love because it’s so easy to wear with gold or silver jewelry and accessories.
I think it’s also important to note that older Chanel bags (pre-2008) were plated with 24-carat gold, but that’s no longer the case with all the newer bags. If that’s important to you, then buying a vintage bag is something to consider.
Why Did You Choose Red?
You guys know that I’m a huge advocate of investing in timeless, classic pieces in neutral colors because they’ll give you the most mileage. However, at this point, my classic handbag lineup is pretty much complete with pieces from Bottega Veneta, Givenchy, Gucci, Saint Laurent, and others. Plus, I already own the Chanel Classic Flap in black. I decided it was time to invest in other styles that could further enhance my wardrobe. Red happens to be my favorite color outside of neutrals and I felt that it made the most sense because it’s adds a beautiful pop of color. Plus, a red quilted bag can also feel really classic and versatile. I’ve owned two red designer bags before so I knew this one would fit in seamlessly with my wardrobe.
How Do You Plan To Style It In The Fall?
The quilted design of the Chanel Classic Flap bag makes it so easy to wear with a variety of outfits and color combinations. In the fall, I tend to wear a lot of darker outfits as well as camel coats and cream tones. Red naturally fits right into this color palette and will make the perfect statement. Whether I’m wearing it for a social outing or during the day, I know I’ll be able to carry this bag at all times of the year.
Where to Buy It?
I’m a big proponent of buying new and pre-owned bags – and have done both with Chanel. The bags are really expensive, so it might make more sense to buy a second hand version if you’re saving thousands of dollars. Either way, Chanel bags are notorious for going up in value, so your investment will pay off down the road.
If you’re buying used, some of my favorite places to shop for pre-owned bags are Fashionphile, The RealReal, Rue La La, Gilt, FarFetch, Shopbop (via What Goes Around Comes Around), and even eBay through the Authenticate program.
If you’re in the market for a brand new Chanel bag, its best to visit your local Chanel store.
Is It Worth The Investment?
There are few brands that rival Chanel when it comes to designer bags. The Chanel Classic Flap bag is no doubt a smart investment piece because the price always goes up 1-2 times year. That was one of my biggest motivations to make the purchase because I knew an increase was underway. With the price factor in mind, you’re basically guaranteed to get your money back if you decide to sell the bag in the future. This bag is also incredibly iconic and continues to be in demand year after year. I can definitely speak to the quality of materials and craftsmanship – and strongly feel that it’s an elegant and timeless wardrobe staple that I’ll keep forever.