Miller's Handbags: A Collector's Guide is an invaluable introduction to this fascinating and colourful area of collecting. Handbags are popular and affordable, both as collector's items and as the latest in chic fashion accessories. Starting in c. 1880 this guide looks at the changing face of the handbag over the years - how different styles, shapes, fabrics and decoration have developed in the face of new advances in technology and manufacturing, from Art Nouveau-style beaded evening bags to the perspex geometry of the Art Deco and Cubist designs of the mid-1930s. The 1940s and 1950s saw the rise of Hermes and the ubiquitous "Kelly" bag. The hard plastic "lucite" handbag was a by-product of World War II plastics technology, summing up the whimsical spirit of 1950s America - the "golden age" of handbag design. Paco Rabanne's 1960s aluminium and chainlinked bags are highly sought-after, together with familiar names such as Pucci and Jean Muir. A look at more recent designers such as Nathalie Hambro and Lulu Guinness ensures that collectors are brought right up to date.
Fact Files highlight the different styles and designs, what to look for and what to avoid, as well as focusing on identifying characteristics of major designers and manufacturers. Every item in the guide has a price range and is illustrated in colour.
Tracy Tolkien is an American international dealer and author living in the UK. A vintage clothing and accessories expert, Tracy owns a shop, Steinberg & Tolkien, in the King's Road, London. A graduate of the Courtauld Institute, Tracy combines her talent as a writer/consultant with her passion for her subject. Special consultant for Miller's Costume Jewellery: A Collector's Guide she has also written Vintage: The Art of Dressing Up and A Collector's Guide to Costume Jewellery.