Italy has always fascinated the world with its Made in Italy products.
There are many products for which the country is admired and envied, for example food, wine, fashion, bags…
Made in Italy remains synonymous with the highest quality, style and good taste thanks to the experience, the great knowledge and skills of the artisans in the country.
In fact, Italian bags “tell stories” of daily passion where each work is made to amaze and last over time.
But, why should you choose an Italian bag?
Because only real Italian bags contain the craftsmanship and the pride of the small manufacturing of Italy where leather and fabrics take on new life.
The brands listed below are born in Italy and although some of these are incorporated or sold abroad over time, they continue to maintain their distinctly Italian characteristics.
So, as you may have guessed, today we will talk about 15 of the most famous Italian handbag brands.
We will take a look at their history, style, characteristics, iconic products, materials, etc.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents:
- 1. Bottega Veneta
- 2. Prada and Miu Miu
- 3. Valentino Garavani
- 4. Coccinelle
- 5. Borbonese
- 6. Alviero Martini
- 7. Fendi
- 8. Love Moschino
- 9. Piquadro and The Bridge
- 10. Furla
- 11. Armani (Emporio Armani and Armani Exchange)
- 12. Trussardi
- 13. Gucci
- 14. Valentino By Mario Valentino
- 15. Pinko
1. Bottega Veneta
The history of this brand originates in Vicenza with Renzo Zengiaro and Michele Taddei and it is inspired by the world of small Venetian craft shops.
Between the 1970s and 1980s the brand becomes internationally famous with its leather creations and the slogan “When your initials are enough“.
The crisis arrives at the end of the 1990s and it leads to its acquisition by Gucci in 2001, the year in which the rigorous restyling of Tomas Maier begins.
Like Gucci, Bottega Veneta also enters the orbit of the French Kering-PPR.
The fame of Bottega Veneta is linked to leather goods and the woven bag.
Its registered office is in Lugano, but Bottega Veneta retains its artisan heart in Italy with its atelier in Vicenza.
Its catalog is refined and classy, so its price range is high: between 1,000 and 10,000 euros. The collectible pieces exceed that figure.
2. Prada and Miu Miu
The Prada Group was born from the initiative of two brothers: Mario and Martino Prada.
The first Prada store opened in Milan in 1913 and it deals with leather accessories and, since then, it has remained a family business.
The third generation is that of Miuccia Prada, a fashion lover and stylist, who takes the reins of the company to bring it back into vogue with the help of the entrepreneur Bertelli, her future husband.
In 1993 Miuccia launched a parallel project: Miu Miu, from her nickname.
In this case, it is the Italian company that incorporates others: in 1999 Prada acquired the English brand “Church’s” and entered the stock exchange in 2011.
Prada is an experimental laboratory where the classic is re-interpreted.
Prada models are fresh and bon ton with balanced silhouettes, recognizable logo and compact dimensions.
Miu Miu speaks to independent women with its unconventional and provocative style.
The younger line experiments with materials (leather, fabrics, bamboo, palmito and straw) for contemporary and fresh solutions.
Prada and Miu Miu are luxury brands with some moderately accessible pieces: Prada prices fluctuate between around 600 and 5000 euros, while Miu Miu between around 650 and 2000 euros.
3. Valentino Garavani
Valentino Garavani is the bags and accessories section of the famous Valentino maison.
The company was founded in 1957 in Rome, in “via dei Condotti”, as a luxury house and it was officially launched in 1962 with a fashion show at Palazzo Pitti.
The maison has an exclusive taste and it offers bespoke clothing, but in 1978 it takes its first steps in ready-to-wear products.
In 1998, Garavani and his partner Giammetti sell the company to the Italian Hdp (Gianni Agnelli), then Valentino moves to Marzotto SpA and, finally, to the Qatari company Mayhoola for Investments.
This movement does not affect the Italian character of Valentino which has its headquarters and manufacturing facilities in Italy.
Valentino Garavani bags embody a natural elegance and their price range is approximately between 1000 and 3000 euros.
An important and unmistakable detail is the elegant V logo; favorite materials are nappa and leathers, woven natural fibers and printed canvas.
Valentino’s luxury is never ostentatious, it is true art for a refined woman.
This brand is specialized in leather goods and small accessories founded by Giacomo Mazzieri in 1978.
Born in the province of Parma, Coccinelle achieved some success from the 1990s until the early 2000s.
In 2006, with the move to Mariella Burani, an upgrade of the brand began, which was acquired by the Korean E-Land, while remaining Italian for materials, production processes and lifestyle.
The ladybug is a symbol of luck, nature and above all of femininity, a transition from adolescence to adulthood.
Its accessories have, in fact, a fresh and carefree personality with a casual-chic style and essential and balanced designs.
Coccinelle proposes itself as an “accessible luxury” brand and it uses the finest materials such as suede and variously worked leathers, natural materials such as jute and canvas.
Its prices start at around 100 euros and can go up to over 450 euros.
Borbonese is the oldest active maison in Italy and it was born in Turin in 1910 thanks to Lucia Lorenzoni Ginestrone.
Lucia is a milliner and she buys a small jewelry workshop, offering accessories to the Turin bourgeoisie.
His son Umberto is committed to growing the company, coming into contact with the Italian and international fashion scene.
In the 1960s, Borbonese created bags for Valentino and YSL; in the 70s it signed an agreement with the Bolognese Redwall, entering the prêt-à-porter market in the 1980s and being incorporated by the partner company in 1992.
Borbonese was incorporated by the American Arpels in 2000, but it was resold shortly after due to the very low sales.
Cocchini, the new CEO, restructures the company and he brings it back to the splendor of the past, reconfirming the name Borbonese.
Although small, the brand is an “Italian DOC” and it signs many models with its historic O.P.
In Borbonese we find practical urban solutions for every day, especially in leather and nylon.
The price range is widely accessible with pieces between 50 and 400 euros.
6. Alviero Martini
The fashion house (of the same name) was founded in the Navigli area, Milan, in 1991 by designer Alviero Martini.
The “journey” represents the main theme of the brand with the timeless Geo print of the 1st Class line.
Acquired by the Final SpA Group, Alviero Martini is still today a reality based on small Italian artisans and it is particularly launched in the Near and Far East.
In 2008, Alviero Martini (stylist) inaugurated the ALV (Andare Lontano Viaggiando) project centered on Alviero’s travel memories.
The maison creates chic and feminine bags, perfect for the office and holidays.
The “1ª Classe woman” is simple but at the same time refined, like these bags with vintage graphics and a very bright color palette.
The collections offer a wide range of coordinated accessories and bags with linear silhouettes.
The brand prefers neutral, bright or skin tones, delicate 3D textures, and the famous GEO prints.
Alviero Martini has prices that are not too prohibitive with models below 90 euros, and others which are close to 600 euros.
The maison was born in Rome in 1925 with the first Adele and Edoardo Fendi boutique, in via del Plebiscito.
The second Fendi generation is all female with the five Fendi sisters who chose the designer Karl Lagerfeld as their creative director in the 1960s.
In 2001 the family sells its shares entirely and Fendi is incorporated into the French giant LVMH, home of Louis Vuitton.
The acquisition does not affect the fame of the maison, still synonymous with wealth, like the famous Baguette and Peekaboo bags.
Fendi‘s style is timeless and sophisticated.
The maison chooses the finest materials such as calf leather, exotic leathers and fur, as well as raffia, eco-leather and canvas.
Fendi bags have elegant profiles, refined details and jewel logos.
The prices, in the medium-high range, start at approximately 300 euros for a clutch bag and can exceed 9,000 euros for an ostrich Peekaboo.
8. Love Moschino
Moschino embodies the pop spirit of the 1980s, Love Moschino represents the liveliness of the next generation.
The artistic vein of Franco Moschino is the driving force of all the branches of the maison, born in 1983 in Milan.
After the death of the founder, the collaborator Jardini becomes creative director.
Acquired by Aeffe, Moschino SpA is an Italian brand launched towards the future and international collaborations under the creative guidance of Jeremy Scott.
Moschino has always interpreted fashion with a free and unconventional spirit, every season in a different way, dealing with all product categories and ages.
Love Moschino was born in 2008 from the previous Moschino Jeans lines and it represents the youngest and trendiest section of the maison.
The style of Love Moschino bags is dynamic and cool.
Love Moschino bags are in the affordable range between around 100 and 200 euros.
9. Piquadro and The Bridge
The founder of the Piquadro brand is Marco Palmieri.
Marco buys leather goods in the province of Rimini to supply local shopkeepers, until he decides to open his shop in his home garage.
He started from the belts with the help of his future wife and he founded his brand in 1998 and opened his first store in Milan in 2000.
The products are technological companions for the office, travel and leisure.
In 2016 Marco falls in love with the timeless style of the Florentine The Bridge and he acquires it, the two brands have different styles but the same care.
Piquadro models are professional and solid, with essential profiles and clean aesthetics.
The Bridge on the other hand, embodies the retro, sophisticated and boho style. An English style with the values of “made in Italy”, especially in the processing of strictly handmade leather.
The brand plays on the natural and warm colors of leather, loves color blocks, decorative stitching and small boho charms.
The two catalogs complement each other and the price ranges are on average accessible: Piquadro prices start at around €150 and do not exceed €400; The Bridge fluctuates between around 150 and 650 euros.
A family history from Bologna, where Aldo and Margherita Furlanetto opened their first shop in 1955 in via Ugo Bassi.
Since the seventies their children follow in their footsteps and in the same years the Furla brand presents its first collection of bags.
The Furla catalog features bon ton and daily bags, such as the iconic Metropolis shoulder bag, available in many colors.
Leather (printed, textured or quilted) is the preferred material, followed by imitation leather and woven raffia.
Furla’s prices are in the mid-range with models that cost between 100 euros and 500 euros.
11. Armani (Emporio Armani and Armani Exchange)
The Armani empire (Giorgio Armani S.p.A.) was founded by Giorgio Armani and Sergio Galeotti in Milan in 1975. It has spread globally, covering all luxury product sectors, including hotels and restaurants.
Armani is made up of several brands including Emporio Armani (EA) and the most recent Armani Exchange (AX).
EA was born in 1981 and it is the modern and trendy line. Its models for day, office and evening have a sporty-chic spirit.
EA prefers sober, even customizable designs; it uses leather and (imitation leather) the logo as the main decoration in micro monogram prints or the iconic eagle.
Prices start at around € 100 and do not exceed € 600.
AX was born in 1991 as a response from the great Giorgio Armani to “fast fashion”.
It is an “accessible luxury” line with a more urban and gritty style with an essential catalog with a minimal design.
The prices are affordable: from 100 euros to less than 150 euros.
The Trussardi brand was born in 1911, the year of the opening of the first shop in Bergamo. It started as a leather glove shop inaugurated by Dante Trussardi.
The Trussardi Group is based in Milan.
Trussardi bags are classics in leather with an elegant matte and satin handcrafting and with essential geometries. The iconic detail of the brand is the unmistakable metal greyhound.
The Trussardi Jeans models are aimed at a younger audience with casual and minimal-chic pieces, such as pouches and clutch bags with soft shapes and eco-friendly solutions that imitate leather and python.
The prices are positioned in the medium range: Trussardi between 300 and 500 euros, Trussardi Jeans between 100 and 200 euros.
The brand was born in Florence from Guccio Gucci‘s love for suitcases in the 1920s.
The company is an expert in every field of luxury, from clothing to home décor, and it grew by incorporating various companies of the caliber of YSL, Balenciaga and Bottega Veneta from 1999 onwards.
Today the Italian fashion house is part of the Gucci Group, a division of the French company Kering (known as PPR).
The Gucci style has no equal and it is immediately recognized for the use of highly refined materials and its mix of class and exuberance.
The Gucci woman certainly loves her “jewels” which are placed in the higher price range: from 500 euros to a maximum of 20,000 euros.
14. Valentino By Mario Valentino
The brand was born in Naples from the artisan workshop of Mr. Vincenzo which makes custom-made footwear.
His son Mario Valentino opens an independent studio where he experiments with artistic and avant-garde solutions.
Mario Valentino owes his fame to an ultra-chic flat sandal with coral flower, before entering the world of bags in 1966, after a stay in the States.
Mario Valentino’s dream is still in the hands of the family in Naples today.
Valentino by Mario Valentino bags are created with artisanal taste and skilled manufacture of the leather for unparalleled softness.
Versatile, elegant and casual models; the bags and accessories catalog is very rich and aimed at women of all ages.
It is a “made in Italy” for everyone, with prices between 50 and 400 euros.
Pinko originated in the 1980s with the Cris Conf project by Pietro Negra and his partner Cristina Rubini. In 1986 they founded the brand.
The key idea is fashion for young people with weekly flash collections. In the 1990s, the couple moved the Pinko project into the “prêt-à-porter” market, aiming at a wider age range and making the creations more distinguishable.
The bags are sober during the day and bold in the evening.
Even though the models are not numerous, there are many variations of shades and decorations, with pop colors and 3D applications, in addition to the iconic “love birds” of the buckles.
Pinko is dynamism and modernity. Prices are affordable, ranging between 200 to 400 euros.