Dior girl Jennifer Lawrence looking pensive with her Diorever
In the wake of Loewe’s off-kilter, now-on-the-arms-of-many Puzzle Bag, Dior’s new Diorever looks oddly old-fashioned, or mostly serious and sedate. It’s the kind of bag, we imagine, Margaret Thatcher would have used if she were “to handbag” her opponents.
As a structured bag, the Diorever is akin to the Be Dior rather than the all-time favourite Lady Dior, but its introduction does not feel as new as its predecessors’. In fact, one suspects that its conception has very much to do with the unceasing popularity of a competitor’s bag, the Birkin. Dior is perhaps hoping women are looking for an alternative that’s equally a status symbol, but unrelated.
What eggs on comparison is the way the Diorever is designed to be carried. For most users, it’s likely, as Dior intended, to be held in the hand with the flap-cover opened, and hung at the rear. This allows the bowel of the bag to be viewed by the outside world, as is in the case of a simple tote, or as in the case of the Birkin, a bag carried by those in the know without its flap-cover over the opening so as to reveal the tiny gold-embossed Hermès logo-type at the top edge, a precursor to the shiny branding now widely seen on bags of brands without similar pedigree.
The details of the Diorever and the various ways to carry it
While the Birkin was not designed to be used with the cover not serving its purpose, the Diorever is conceived to be carried with the cover shirking its main function. To make this work, the designers learned from what the Birkin’s cover can’t do: sit without getting in the way. The Diorever flap-cover has two leather-encased circle magnets that work on both sides. When positioned backwards, it stays relatively secure on the rear side of the bag with the aid of another set of magnets secured on the body’s hind (and it looks rather fetching if you select the Diorever with contrast leather lining). When you need to close the bag, bring the flap-cover forward, and it shuts almost automatically as another set of front magnet draws it close to the body like a waiting lover.
It’s nifty design, really, but is the use of magnets typical of the fastenings of luxury leather goods? Although quieter—certainly more silent that a clasp (or, possibly, a certain Twist?)—it has as much appeal as a tab of Velcro, no? What may go against the Diorever reaching popularity of long-waiting-list madness could be the prevalence of handbags of its ilk. Walk past Delvaux and you’ll know what we mean.
Dior’s Diorever, SGD 4500 (small), SGD5,200 (medium), and SGD6,000 (large) are available at all Dior stores. Photos: Dior