The Collection

The Simone Handbag Museum houses one of the finest collections in the world.

The focus is upon fashionable western handbags, created for women to carry, convey and safeguard small personal items. Exhibits include the latest ʻItʼ bags of the 21st century and rare specimens that date back to the 1500s.

By exploring the form and decoration of each handbag, it is possible to construct a history of changing fashion cycles and the shifting experiences of womenʼs lives lived.

The Museum is arranged over two floors. This floor is devoted to handbags that date from 1900, whilst the Upper Floor reveals historical bags. Having observed the modern bags, it is intriguing – and sometimes surprising - to discover their historical precedents, highlighting connections across time. Each floor presents both a chronology and explores special themes.

Highlights of the collection