The fashion world first caught wind of the Diorissimo tote bag through press images of the Cruise (also known as the Resort or Pre-Spring collections) 2012 collection in late-2011, but it was only in March last year that the bag was finally launched under Dior’s Spring 2012 line.

Diorissimo in Croc Leather

Diorissimo in Croc Leather

It was then that we also learned that the bag was named after the Dior fragrance, Diorissimo, which was launched in 1956, featuring lily of the valley – Christian Dior’s lucky flower – at its heart.

Diorissimo Eau De Toilette

Diorissimo Eau De Toilette

Dubbed as Dior’s “Couture Handbag” that’s meant for everyday use, it’s no wonder that the Diorssimo has been seen dangling from the arms and shoulders of supermodels Natalia Vodianova and Karlie Kloss, as well as the celebrity in-crowd that includes Jessica Alba and Olivia Palermo, who are oh so in love with it that they own more than one! Now, it’s quite rare for celebrities to play favourites, but when you see them sporting the same bag in different colours, you know that there really must be something about it. After all, how often does one buy the same thing in different colours?

Jessica Alba, Olivia Palermo and Emmy Rossum

Jessica Alba, Olivia Palermo and Emmy Rossum toting the Diorissimo

So what is it that keeps the celebs going back for more? Well, very simply, it’s the Diorissimo’s versatility – it maintains its shape whether it’s toted by the arm, on the shoulder or cross-body, whilst being supple enough to give just the right amount of “slouch”. My only concern was its flat handles, because these usually rest rather uncomfortably on the arm (sometimes you’d even get the feeling that it’s cutting into your skin!) but after having tested it out, I’m pleased to say that they were surprisingly comfortable! And to top it all off, you can take this bag straight from lunch, right into the boardroom – making it the perfect combination of a fashionable, yet practical tote.

Diorissimo in Rose, Bleu, Violet and Turquoise

Diorissimo in Rose, Bleu, Violet and Turquoise

The defining characteristic of all Diorissimo bags is the revamped D-I-O-R charms and its bi-colour scheme, with contrasting shades for the exterior and the interior. It also comes with a detachable shoulder strap and zippered leather pouch for your valuables (that would rest in an otherwise, open tote). Available in three sizes (small, medium and large) in either exotic skins, smooth or grained calf leather, its classic colours include Black, Petal, Beige, and White, though seasonal colours may vary depending on the palette for the particular collection.

Detachable leather pouch for Diorissimo

Detachable leather pouch for Diorissimo

Interior Detail Illustration of Diorissimo

The Diorissimo’s anatomy

Now, although it has amassed quite a celebrity following, the Diorissimo isn’t as commonly seen on the arms of us mere mortals (and that includes tai-tais!). At this point, you’re probably wondering why. And no, I can assure you that it’s certainly not because they don’t like it, but simply because it can’t be bought off the shelf. That’s right. And there isn’t a waiting list either. How then, can one get their hands on it? Well, these babies are so exclusive that they’re only made available to celebs and a select group of clientele (translation: Dior VIP customers) who are invited by the brand’s Paris HQ to purchase these bags, but not before going through their entire purchase history to decide whether they can have it. Upon passing the test, each person is only allowed to purchase ONE at a time, with exceptions made only for celebrities.

+++
Image credit: Courtesy of Dior
Illustration credit: Zoe Ng

Bag Addicts Anonymous a.k.a. Bei Yan is the editor and founder of Bag Addicts Anonymous, a blog that specialises in designer handbags. She can be contacted at [email protected], or you can follow her on TwitterPinterest and Instagram via @bagaddictsanon and Facebook