This comprehensive new book celebrates over 550 top quality handbags by leading and unknown designers the world over, dating from 1759 to 2004, with detailed information to describe their outstanding qualities. These carefully selected handbags are arranged by their primary materials and chronologically within each chapter, for easy reference and interesting comparisons. Here fine leather, fabric, metal, beaded, skin, and plastic handbags from all over Europe, England, Canada, The United States, and Asia appear in over 600 beautiful color photographs. Examples appear from the design houses of Adele Handbags, Asprey, Bergdorf Goodman, Bonnie Cashin for Coach, Cartier, Chanel, Coblentz, Collins of Texas, deLillo, Elizabeth Arden, Emilio Pucci, Fendi, Givenchy, Gucci, Halston, Hermes, I. Miller, Joret, Judith Lieber, Keiselstein-Cort, Llewellen, Mandalian, Mark Cross, Marvel, Nettie Rosenstein, Patricia of Miami, Pierre Cardin, Raoul Calabro, Rialto, Roger Van S., Ronay, Rosenfeld, sydney love, Tiffany, Tropic, Tyrolean, Virginia Merrill, Viva, Whiting & Davis Co., Wilardy Original, Zandra Rhodes, and many more. An extensive Glossary, informative Resources section, Bibliography, and Index make this book friendly while instructional, securing an important place in the libraries of fashion historians, vintage clothing buffs, antique dealers, and accessories collectors alike.