Handbags have been an essential part of the feminine attire for nearly 200 years. This all-inclusive book showcases hundreds of unique handbags, from pouches worn in the dark ages to contemporary clutches, illustrated in 450 beautiful color images. This book traces the handbag's evolution as it has related to fashion and been influenced by history. The handbags range from delicate beaded reticules, to bold metal ring mesh bags and rhinestone-accented velvet evening bags. Leather, silk, plastic, and even wooden handbags are shown, each with current market values in the caption. The factual text and period advertisements will appeal to enthusiasts. This book is an invaluable reference for collectors and antique professionals, and a great resource for designers.