The History of  a Luxury Giant

Louis Vuitton 101

Early Life of Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton was born in 1821 in France.  He arrived in Paris at 22 and learned to craft  durable containers and how to pack them  properly under the successful box maker  and packer Monsieur Marechal.

Branching Out

In 1854, years after he had mastered his craft  and became well respected for it, Vuitton  ventured out on his own to open a shop.  Four years later, in 1858, Vuitton designed the first Louis Vuitton steamer trunk.

Vuitton changed the way luggage was designed. At the time trunks had rounded tops to allow for water to run off but this did not allow for convenient storage. Vuitton introduced a flat, yet waterproof trunk that was easily stackable.

Luggage Maker

In 1886, his son George invented and  patented an ingenious locking system that  made it impossible to pick the lock of their trunks. This lock is still used today.

Unbreakable Lock

Gaining Recognition

Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel was, and still is, one  of fashion biggest icons. She had her eye on  all upcoming trends that were on the horizon.  In 1925, Louis Vuitton created a dome-shaped handbag meant for personal use, rather than travel, specifically for Chanel.

The Lady Dior

Chanel allowed Louis Vuitton to mass produce the bag for the general public in 1934. It was redesigned to be more compact and streamlined for everyday use. The result was the classic Louis Vuitton Alma bag that we all know and love today.

Creating LVMH

In 1987, now under Henry Racamier, Louis Vuitton and Moet et Chandon and Hennessy teamed up to create the LVMH conglomerate. This was the parent conglomerate of the companies.

Over the Decades

1997 was a pivotal year for the brand as it ventured into ready to wear with the appointment of Marc Jacobs as the first creative director. In 2001, Stephen Sprouse, with the help of Marc Jacobs, designed a collection of neon graffiti written over the classic monogram canvas.

Collaborating with Artists

Following the success of the Stephen Sprouse collaboration, Louis Vuitton began to align itself with artists and designers. In 2003, Louis Vuitton worked with Takashi Murakami to create the Multicolor Monogram. This collection is still very popular to this day.

Introducing the Neverfull

As Louis Vuitton sales continued to soar, in 2007 the brand introduced a new handbag known as the Neverfull. It would become LV's most classic styles and one of the most recognized handbags in the world.

A Line of Great  Creative Directors

After Marc Jacobs, a number of groundbreaking creative directors joined the brand. Kim Jones started at Louis Vuitton Men's in 2011, Nicolas Ghesquière joined womenswear in 2013, and Virgil Abloh started at Louis Vuitton Men's 2018.

Investment Value

According to Rebag's Clair Report he retention value of several Louis Vuitton bags went over 100% of their manufacturer’s suggested retail price in 2021 making Louis Vuitton a great brand in which to invest.