Christie's to auction upscaled Gucci Bamboo handbags

The vintage items were upgraded using top-notch materials and stones, including 927 white diamonds

The three Bamboo bags have been reimagined by Gucci Vault. Photo: Christie's
Powered by automated translation

Christie's is to host a sale of three upscaled vintage Gucci handbags as part of its Handbags Online: The Paris Edit, that will run from October 31 to November 14.

The bags have been reimagined by Gucci Vault, the experimental space Gucci launched in 2021 to pair young designers with surplus materials and vintage stock. Once coveted vintage Bamboo bags, they've now been upgraded as one-offs for the sale.

The Bamboo bag has been a mainstay of Gucci for more than 70 years, when the shortages of post war Europe compelled the Gucci team to find innovative solutions. Unable to source wood for its bag handles, the team turned to cheap and plentiful bamboo, as it could be moulded to the correct shapes.

In use ever since, each piece of bamboo is given the distinctive scorched patina over an open flame, and remains a bestseller for the house.

For this project, three vintage Bamboo bags were found, revamped, and renamed “Made To Treasure.” One such piece is a classic in canvas with the all-over logo print from the 1960s. Aimed at the purist, and now restored to its full glory, Christie's has estimated it to sell for between $6,000 and $8,000.

A second bag in terracotta red leather now sports a new handle, made from Murano glass. As well as being handmade, the handle is also hand decorated with the “herbarium” floral print. With the painting alone having taken almost 30 hours, the bag is expected to sell for between $21,000 and $32,000.

The most prized item of the trio however, is undoubtedly the black leather. The simplicity of the bag is elevated by the distinctive bamboo handle now made in 18crt gold, and studded with 927 white diamonds. Thanks to this dusting of carbon across the bag's hardware, Christie's expects it to sell for between $159,000 and $212,000.

Updated: October 24, 2023, 2:03 PM