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Handbag We Heart: The YSL Mombasa Bag

It’s high time we talk about one of the most iconic handbags in fashion history. It’s on par with Gucci Jackie, Fendi Baguette, and Prada Bowler bags. It debuted during Spring 2002 Ready-to-Wear fashion week, and when it arrived in stores in December 2001, retailers like Bergdorf Goodman couldn’t keep it on shelves (cue the waiting lists). The following year, its designer earned the honor and title of CFDA Accessories Designer of the Year. It’s also one of the last bags specifically designed by this legendary creator and industry game changer for the particular immensely influential fashion house. The bag we’re discussing today is of course the famous Mombasa, made by Tom Ford for Yves Saint Laurent.

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The Mombasa is cool, it’s different, and though it was birthed nearly 15 years ago, somehow still feels fresh. Hello! There’s an antler on your arm. If that doesn’t shake up your accessory game, we don’t know what will. It’s a statement, an icon. The Mombasa feels modern when worn with a sleek and chic polished outfit that combats the obvious and dangerously close to being over-the-top bohemian vibes. Although, there’s a case to be made for the resurgence of the hobo chic aesthetic. As Stylecaster recently pointed out, early 2000s Olsen twin style made such a lasting impression on our generation that we still reminisce the days of slouchy beanies worn towards the back of the head, deep-V long sleeve flowy maxi dresses, vintage bangles, cowboy boots, ripped tights, circle scarves, slip dresses, belts worn slung low and outside of flare jeans, horn necklaces, chandelier earrings, and so so many beach waves. So whether you’re yearning for those days to make a comeback, or you plan to style your Mombasa with a silk blouse and strappy stiletto sandals, we say why not. Why not claim this iconic accessory for your collection today. Early 2000s Nicole Richie and Jessica Simpson would be proud. After all, in Tom Ford’s own words, “What bamboo is to Gucci, horn is now to Saint Laurent.”

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Mad for Mombasa? Check out our collection of Tom Ford pieces from the same era, right here.

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2 Comments
 
  1. Rebecca Karamehmedovic November 9, 2016 at 11:51 AM

    Sarah – i’m wondering if the photos you have in this post are available in high resolution for a book project i’m working on.

    Thanks!
    R

  2. Nina Louie November 9, 2016 at 12:51 PM

    Hi Rebecca! All the street style images on the Style Stories blog are original images commissioned and owned by eBay. So sorry, they are not available for use in a book, but we wish you the best of luck with your project.

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