By Arti Tiwari

The beauty of the designer handbags industry is the variety of pieces available to suit every taste, purpose, or budget. From the high street to high-end fashion houses, experimentation with colours, materials, precious metals, jewels, and size is regular. As a result, there is something for everyone, and with all popular designer bags, there are pieces which take it to the next level and demand incredibly high prices as a result.

Here, we look at some of the most expensive handbags ever produced, and why they come with such price tags, including those bought in an auction, direct from the designer or loaned out to famous names.

Marc Jacobs

Marc Jacobs is a name ubiquitous with fashion accessories and notorious for quality, so their specialist ‘Carolyn Crocodile’ handbag had to feature at 10 on our list. Whilst they have more accessible and affordable lines and may not seem to be exclusive, this piece proves they can compete with huge global names, not just on price but on outstanding quality and rarity too.

This handbag costs an estimated 21,000 ($30,000) and is constructed from patent crocodile skin, available in a quilted blue or purple coloured pattern reminiscent of tie-dye, which guides the chosen colour through a variety of different tints and hues on each individual panel to create an unforgettable effect. You won’t see anything like this again.


The ‘Selleria’ handbag was first launched over 70 years ago in 1938 and is an icon Italian fashion giants Fendi have moulded their brand image around. Made to order with sable and chinchilla leathers (two of the most expensive and elusive skins in existence) these beauties can take up to 4 months to be produced by Italian master craftsmen.

Hilde Palladino

Hilde Palladino is a Norwegian designer who produces some of the most unique handbags on the planet. The ‘Gadino’ is classed as one of the most impressive purses in the world by popular demand. The limited edition bag is made from white crocodile skin with 39 diamonds placed on its lavish white gold fasteners.

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton are known for pushing the boundaries with extravagant one off collections and ground-breaking concepts which have changed the landscape of fashion over their history. With a brand image of usually being clean, clinical and recognisable, nothing within this list quite compares to their ‘Tribute Patchwork’ bag for boundary pushing innovative design.

Including a variety of different iconic Louis Vuitton styles pieced together, only 20 of these Frankenstein-esque collector’s items were ever produced, and retailed for £29,000 ($42,000) each. Opinion was split upon release in 2007 as some sectors dubbed it “the world’s ugliest handbag”, but unsurprisingly they all sold out rapidly. For sheer attention to detail and paying homage to some fantastic styles, Louis Vuitton has to be acknowledged for their audacity on this occasion.

Saint Laurent

Saint Laurent founded in 1961, is a brand notorious for modern minimalism and Parisian monochrome fashion, creating ready-to-wear garments as well as a range of accessories in which handbags feature prominently. Creatively directed by Hedi Slimane, simplicity in its purest form with perfect execution and superb materials seems to be the way of YSL, and their leather tote is a prime example of this mantra.

Constructed from magnificent alligator leather you cannot argue that this handbag is simply sublime and will never go out of style: exactly what founder Yves Saint Laurent would have wanted. Coming in at 20,500 (€26,500) it ranks at the ‘cheaper’ end of this list but maintains an understated luxury that rivals the more excessive pieces on this list.

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