As a true international celebrity of the ‘90s, Princess Diana had a Midas touch as a fashion icon. The purses she carried were notable examples, becoming instant classics. They included Ferragamo’s chain-strapped shoulder bag, the Lady D; and of course, Dior’s cult classic purse, the Lady Dior. Diana loved certain styles so much that she would often buy multiple pieces at a time, but in different colors. From casual quilted pieces to designer satin clutches, here are some of Diana’s well-loved purses:
1. Souleiado Quilted Bag
During her years before marriage, Diana was seen carrying around Souleiado’s quilted bags when she went to watch Prince Charles play polo. Souleiado is a shop on London’s Fulham Road that makes quilted casual handbags from Provence. Diana reportedly bought five pieces in different designs—each at $45.
2. Chanel Curved Panel Bag
Royal protocol normally dictates that wearing foreign couture labels is a fashion faux pas. But for one of Princess Diana’s state visits to France, she was allowed to wear Chanel as a tribute to her hosts. Chanel was the first of many foreign labels such as Versace and Dior that she would later be seen wearing.
3. Versace Chain Bag
The late Gianni Versace, whom she met through Elton John, was a good and dear friend of Princess Diana's. Naturally, she was photographed with a Versace bag slung over her shoulders.
4. Jimmy Choo Clutch
That red carpet moment when Diana stepped out in a striking purple Gianni Versace creation during a gala at the Field Museum in Chicago was definitely one for the books. She accessorized with choker pearls and her signature sapphire ring. Of course, she color-matched her couture gown with a purple satin clutch from Jimmy Choo, her preferred shoe designer.
5. Anya Hindmarch Clutches
Anya Hindmarch, a British handbag designer was called in to create elegant satin clutches to match Diana’s evening wear. Interestingly, Diana used to call these her “cleavage clutches” as a protective device to cover her décolletage when she would step out of cars.
6. Ferragamo Lady D Shoulder Bag
Rarely seen without it, Diana owned this Ferragamo bag in different colors (she had more than 20)—to complement her coordinated ensembles. As a tribute to the Princess, the chain-strapped calfskin shoulder bag with distinctive gold-hooped clasps was posthumously renamed the Lady D.
7. Dior Lady Dior Bag
This black patent bag with gold hardware wasn’t originally named after Princess Diana; it was first unofficially named the Chouchou. Still enduringly popular to this day, the structured purse got rechristened to Lady Dior only after Diana was spotted carrying it everywhere, from state visits to charity events.