Remember my past musing about whether I should get a Longchamp Les Pliages tote bag? I should have looked in my closet! Well no, I did not find a Longchamp Le Pliage magically appearing in there, I found something just as good if not better.
My old Hervé Chapelier 925N tote!
Hervé Chapelier is a French brand that specializes in strong colourful nylon bags. Like Longchamp, the bags can be folded although not into a pocket size but they are similarly lightweight, hardy, longwearing and great for travel.
Its also interesting that Hervé Chapelier bags don’t seem to be as popular as Longchamp. Maybe that’s why it appeals to me. I recently shook the dust off my old Hervé Chapelier 925N tote and fell in love all over again.
My Hervé Chapelier 925N was purchased here in Kuala Lumpur many many years ago when I first saw it in the DFS Galleria here. We no longer have a DFS Galleria and as far as I know, you can’t get Herve Chapelier here anymore. In fact, you would be hardpressed to find Hervé Chapelier anywhere in Asia except Japan, based on the website.
Fakes are available of course but I don’t do fakes or replicas. Ebay is an option but then, you never know if you might end up with a fake. So I’m going to bide my time, forget about Longchamp Les Pliages and hunt down more Hervé Chapelier bags which are apparently still all made in France 😀
My bag is quite old now. The designs are distinguished by numbers. The 925N has a distinctive trapezoid shape, with a large square bottom and a triangular body with dual colours. The strap is long enough to sling, and the nylon is very strong and waterproof. I got sopping wet in Shanghai, but my camera stayed nice and dry inside my Hervé Chapelier 😀 In fact everything in my bag was dry although the outside was drenched.
Why I say it makes a great travel bag is because its so light yet is so strong and can carry a ton of stuff without looking bulky. Excellent when you’re shopping for souvenirs because you never know what you might pick up, and you don’t want to look like a bag lady while at it. The inside is just one main compartment closed with a zip, with a zip pocket which is big enough to fit a passport and essentials.
I’ve handwashed my bag in warm soapy water and it comes out clean and looking like new every single time. I’ve fallen in love with it all over again and I’ll be darned if I don’t want another. Yes I’m a spoilt brat that way 😛
Having played with the Longchamp Les Pliage and then using my Hervé Chapelier, I think I’d get another Hervé Chapelier instead of the Les Pliage. Its less common in this part of the world, and I like that there’s no leather on it plus I already know that it lasts and is waterproof with no bubbling of the nylon, unlike what I’ve heard about the Longchamps 🙂
The website says that its €72 (RM300+) at point of writing. I think I purchased mine for about RM150 or so but it was many years ago. Question now is, where do I get another?! Maybe I’ll check it out in the UK 😀
Have you ever set eyes on a Hervé Chapelier or do you own one too? Is it love for you too? 🙂