How the Mini Kelly Bag Speaks to Modern Woman

Black and Craie Kelly 20CM

“The best things come in small packages”—a proverbial phrase that is often attributed to things that sparkle, and whose value is determined by the amount of karats. Lately, however, one of the most iconic bags is getting in on the action, giving diamonds and other baubles a run for their money.

Last fall, Hermès introduced a revamped miniature version of one of its most celebrated and highly coveted bags: the Kelly.

The Kelly is the machine gun in the luxury brand’s arsenal of drool-worthy classics (the Birkin, Constance and Evelyne are the rest). It is noted for its sleek, trapezoid silhouette; single, high handle; detachable shoulder strap, and, most significantly, ability to make anyone (and we mean anyone) look like royalty. In fact, it was so named after the dearly departed Princess of Monaco and Hollywood icon, Grace Kelly. She popularized the style after wearing the bag constantly while pregnant, shielding her growing baby bump from prying photographers and gossip columnists.

During the ’50s and ’60s, showing that you were pregnant was an extreme faux pas, which is why women of a certain class did everything they needed to do to conceal it. The large, boxy shape of the Kelly certainly helped with this, while simultaneously imbuing them with the éclat that comes with donning leather goods from Hermès. Also, sizable, top-handle bags dominated the era, as it conveyed a prim and proper quality that was de rigeur at the time.

Times have changed, and so have women’s attitudes toward the kind of statement they want to make with their carryalls. With fashion being the most immediate indicator of the cultural zeitgeist, taking a closer look at how bags have evolved throughout the passing years showcases how women have gained more control; how they no longer have to be so straight-laced; how they can be sexy and serious at the same time; how they can now show their pregnancy proudly.

But through it all, the allure of the Kelly bag has not diminished in status in the least—though, the style has gone through some updates. Indeed, just like women’s roles nowadays, there are certainly more options: vibrant colors, eye-catching exotic skins and more of a range in sizes—from 35cm to 20cm, which is so small that it doesn’t even hold the iPhone 7 Plus. That said, what is the reasoning behind such a tiny bag?


Here’s the breakdown for the 20cm: the compactness speaks to today’s trend for the fashion conscious woman—small bags.

In our opinion, the mini Kelly 20cm is most apropos for cocktail parties and luncheons or a brisk jaunt on the weekend. Its iconic lady like sellier structure is particularly well suited in a compact size. Furthermore, these occasions typically require the least essentials to be carried, perhaps a credit card, ID, and lip gloss.  Carried in hand or on the shoulder with the shoulder strap added, these little bags, which are available in a wide assortment of colors in leathers and exotics, are the epitome of elegance.

As they say, when it comes to making a memorable statement, it is really the small things that count.


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