It goes without saying that handbags are my passion.  I adore collecting & using them with such fervor that it can barely be contained.  If you get me started discussing the craftsmanship of a bag, you will see a twinkle in my eye enlighten and a smile flash across my face.  As you might imagine, they’re quite possibly my favorite piece of the wardrobe.

A few months back, I started a special series that will be regularly posting on my blog, “The Handbag Diaries.”  Being the handbag aficionado that I am, this series is always something that I look for when purchasing new handbags, but rarely find.  It is my hope that this little series helps you to figure out what handbags are worth the money, which ones need to stay on the shelves, and which ones you simply cannot live without!  This week, I will be doing a review and what’s in my bag for the vintage Chanel small flap handbag (great resource for vintage Chanel here).

Visit past handbag diaries posts hereherehere, and here.


This bag is very structured.  It will stand on its own.  It’s flexible but I would limit overstuffing it in an effort to preserve it’s structure.  It has a chain that can be worn two ways:  straps doubled or long long single strap.  I find that I wear it most often by one long single strap.

Leather Quality:

It is made of lambskin leather.  It is the most luxurious leather and if I’m completely honest, given that it’s a vintage piece, I actually think the craftsmanship is better! Due to the lambskin leather, it is a bit fragile.  This leather will scratch if not paid attention to.  While you do not need to overly baby this bag, I would highly recommend having a general awareness of your nails when opening & closing the bag, paying attention when setting the bag down on a surface & ensuring you don’t bump it into things while wearing it as scratches can happen.  Lambskin is more of a high maintenance leather.  I have not experienced any color transfer with it.


Vintage Chanel means better hardware.  Period.  Hardware on Chanel bags is the whole reason as to why I would much rather purchase a vintage piece rather than new.

Today’s Chanel gold hardwares are merely gold colored metal.  They are not actual real gold.  However, it wasn’t always this way.  Up until about 2008/2009 Chanel plated all of their hardware with real gold.  The telltale sign to discover whether or not a bag has real gold plated hardware is the little square inside the CC on the left hand side.  If the square exists, you’re in luck and have found a gold plated piece.  If that little square does not exist, you merely have gold colored hardware.


This bag can be worn in the hand with the straps tucked in, doubled up on the shoulder, or with the chain pulled through to create single strap on the shoulder.  It is very easy to carry. It is perfect for a day of shopping or a dinner out.  In my opinion, it is a bag that looks just as good with a fancy dress as it does it jeans.  The size keeps it flexible to many outfit possibilities.

What It Holds:

This bag is small & doesn’t hold a ton.  It fit my Karen Walker sunglasses (with a soft small case), Saint Laurent card holder,  Louis Vuitton Cles (for my keys),  iPhone, Goyard pouch , lipliner and lipstick and had very little room left.  It will NOT fit a full size wallet.  In addition, a regular sunglass case would be an incredibly tight fit.  Furthermore, a makeup bag is out of the question with this bag.  It is a handbag that you have to choose what to take with you.  However, with the use of a card case, it is useable for daily use.


This handbag is one of my favorites of my collection.  The ability that it has to transport itself from day to night is amazing.  I absolutely adore it and it is such a classic.  It is a bag that I plan to keep in my collection forever and potentially pass down.

Hope you found this helpful!  Feel free to ask me any questions you may have about her!

Visit past handbag diaries posts here, here, here, and here.




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