If you are obsessed with vintage handbags, then you have come to the right place. Here at Diary of a Vintage Girl we love to search for designer vintage handbags that still look great today.
The wonderful thing about buying vintage, especially when it comes to handbags, is that you can often find them at a much cheaper price compared to their RRP.
Not only that, you are giving a second (or third or fourth) life to the handbag, rather than letting it go to landfill. This is great, especially in today’s fast fashion and throw away climate.
If you are a lover of the New York-based brand Coach, then there is a good chance you are here to grab a retro bargain. We don’t blame you either, because there are many to be had.
So, take a look at our pick of the 12 best Coach vintage handbags that complete your look.
History Of Coach Handbags
Coach first began in 1941 under the name of Manhattan Leather Bags by the couple Miles and Lillian Cahn. Miles became inspired by how a baseball glove looked, and decided to create a handbag that had the attributes of this type of glove.
He worked alongside six different artists to create the looks of twelve handbags. The craftsmanship was excellent, and the best tan leather was used. The stitching on each bag was excellent and expertly done.
By 1962, a woman named Bonnie Cashin came into the company. She was already known for working on American Apparel wear, and had brought in the use of organic materials like wool and leather, as well as industrial grade hardware.
Because of her experience, she brought a big change to Coach. She launched lightweight Coach handbags that were simple in design, yet very effective. The handbags were also available in punchy, bright colors too.
However, it wasn’t until 1972 when Lew Frankfort became the CEO and transformed Coach into the global brand that it is today. By the 1990s, it was known as an affordable brand within the luxury brand space.
The company also had begun selling other goods and collections alongside the handbags the brand was known for.
9 Best Vintage Coach Handbags
Coach handbags are one of the most affordable options when it comes to wanting a luxury brand handbag – but this isn’t the only reason Coach is a great choice.
The simple designs and wonderful aesthetic appeal makes a Coach bag so wonderful to own and wear. They are also often very roomy, meaning you can fit quite a lot in one bag.
There are many iconic designs to choose from too.
Iconic Coach Handbags
While you could say all Coach handbags are iconic, there are those that just stand out. For those in the know, you may want to choose a particular handbag because of its iconic status, or just because you really like that design of bag.
Some iconic handbags have their lines terminated, so looking at second hand vintage Coach handbags is a must. Fortunately you can find these handbags in plenty of places.
1. Coach Court Handbag
The Coach Court handbag is a fashion staple. Having been released in 1989, it still looks just as good today as it did then.
It has an iconic silhouette and boxy shape that is loved by many Coach bag collectors. It can literally take you from day to night due to its wonderful overall design. It also has the iconic Coach turnlock too.
It is roomy enough to fit your studying work in, or use as your everyday go-to. It is a medium sized leather bag that is perfect to carry all the time.
It was also the first of its kind for this wonderful structured design.
2. Coach Saddle Handbag
The Saddle bag is one of the most iconic lines by Coach. It became popular during the 1980s as the official bag for United Airlines Stewardesses. How fun would it be to get your own Coach bag for your job?
However, it was actually first conceived as an idea in 1972. Over time there have been many variations to the original due to its success. In fact, in 2016 it was named as the best selling Coach bag.
While a medium sized bag (on the smaller side), it has many compartments within it and a secure flap. This makes it very roomy. The beautiful tan leather is just another reminder that this is a wonderful Coach collectible.
3. Coach Willis Handbag
The Coach Willis handbag is a very similar style to the Court handbag, however the shape is different. You will notice that this one has a square shape compared to the Court’s longer shape.
This is because it is a take on the structured silhouette that was first introduced in 1989 – or the 90s as some people say.
This type of bag, just like the Court bag, can be used every single day. It has a no fuss design that can take you from day to night, as well as be worn for many different occasions.
It is made from glovetanned leather which gives it an extra beautiful finish.
4. Coach Duffle Handbag
The Coach duffle bag is one of the most popular and iconic handbags from this luxury American fashion house. While a duffle bag was nothing new, Coach put their own twist on the design.
There have been many different varieties of the Coach duffle bag, but the brand always knows what the customers want. This bag is incredibly spacious, yet looks very stylish too.
You can use this tanned leather handbag as an everyday go-to, or to put your gym clothes into – though I prefer the former!
Timeless Coach Handbags
All Coach bags are timeless, but then there are those select few bags which will always stand the test of time for many years to come. Here are some of my favorites:
5. Coach Station Handbag
And we are back to this famous structured design that Coach is known so well for – however it is not quite the same as the 90s remake. This 1980s Coach Station handbag is incredibly beautiful and has that vintage aesthetic that people love.
However, it is the kind of bag that also steps away from the usual leather colors of black and tan. The Station Coach bag is available in other colors too, such as a deep green and red.
However, you are unlikely to find this bag new as the line is discontinued. Fortunately there are many vintage and restored Station Coach bags available online.
6. Coach Dinky Handbag
The Dinky Coach crossbody bag is the kind you will want for everyday items. However, it is bigger than you expect – in a good way. It is roomy enough to fit everything that you need – from your wallet and phone, to snacks and hand sanitizer.
Bonnie Cashin designed this beauty in the 70s. She came up with the turnlock design in 1964, however, despite it not making it onto any Coach bags until 1973.
This popular bag is loved worldwide and is often described as ‘the little bag that could’. This is in reference to how much it can hold! It has had a few changes over time, but its initial concept is still the same.
7. Coach Parker Crossbody Handbag
There are many Coach crossbody bags. In fact, there are some in this list – however, we love the Coach Parker crossbody handbag.
It is incredibly versatile, and that includes its design too. You can get a beautiful tan leather in various shades of browns, reds, pinks and blacks, or choose a monogrammed Coach design.
It has a similar chain design to the Chanel 2.55 handbag. If you are looking for something a little more you, then this Coach crossbody will be just what you need.
Fun Coach Handbags
If you are looking for a Coach bag that will show off your personality, then you may just want to look at the Court backpack and the Chelsea handbag.
Here are the reasons why:
8. Coach Court Backpack
Who knew a backpack could look so good? The Coach Court backpack can be used to take to college with all of your study materials in, or while traveling. You can even use such a cute bag like this in place of a regular handbag.
The Coach backpack uses refined pebble leather in numerous colorways. You can definitely show off your style with this kind of bag.
There is also the Bleeker backpack which has a completely different design and is often geared towards men. My favorite is the all deep tan leather bag with its many compartments!
9. Coach Chelsea Handbag
Just like every other Coach handbag, the size of it is deceiving. This is because the Chelsea handbag can fit not only your essentials, but a lot of other things that you might need every single day.
The leather of this bag can be found in a number of different colors, which also means that there are various limited edition lines too. I absolutely love the floral and bright color designs. It really makes a fashion statement.
The Coach Chelsea handbag also has a vintage inspired edge to it that still looks timeless. Amazing!
When it comes to the designer brand Coach, there are many vintage bargains out there.
While finding a Coach handbag at a cheaper price may not be the selling point for you, you will have noticed that there are some great bags available.
The good thing about Coach is that they make bags you can use everyday that complete your look, but also are functional.
The bags are spacious enough to carry what you need, whether that is on an errand, or when you go to work – there is a bag to suit every situation too.
However, most of the bags are useful and complementary in both space and design, no matter where you are, meaning you often only need the one Coach handbag.
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