There are few bags that bring up such strong opinions or is as iconic as Louis Vuitton’s Speedy. The Speedy was one of the first bags that Louis Vuitton made for everyday use. It remains one of the most popular bags of Louis Vuitton (LV) as well as one of the most common. Carried by Audrey Hepburn (for whom the Speedy 25 was made – yay!), it is a true classic but in recent years has come with the negative reputation of being “basic”. Basic B or not I love my Speedy its the only bag I use everyday…clearly there is a reason.
My Initial Debate
While the Speedy is often known as the bag a person buys as their “first” or “gateway” LV – it was actually my second. I chose to instead make my first LV purchase the Pouchette Metis (see review here) and there were a couple of reasons why. First, the sales associate that helped me said the Metis was going to be price increased and the second, everyone I spoke to had a negative thing to say about the Speedy. Negative statements were as follows:
- “The bottom sags, it doesn’t hold its shape”
- “Why would you buy that? It’s so basic – everyone has it”
- “It’s so common people will assume it’s fake”
- “You’ll hate carrying it”
Talk about a rough crowd. I have to admit I let people get into my head and forgot for a while an important lesson; that the reason you buy/wear something is because YOU love it, YOU want it, and that YOU – NOT them – will carry it. All I have to say to my Speedy haters is you don’t know what you’re missing.
This bag, the one I debated so much about, has ironically turned into my favorite purse. I love the amount it holds. I’ve used it many times as a carry on, stuffing a sweater, water bottle, you name it in there and it still looks great. The Speedy does come in several different sizes but I chose to go with the 25 for two reasons. First is that I am short so the 30 looked like I was a hobbit carrying Gandalf’s bag (yes I know…I’m a geek). And second I don’t carry so much stuff on a daily basis that I need to have a HUGE bag.
As far as holding shape I will be honest sometimes when filled with heavy contents, yes it does lose the barrel satchel shape. It doesn’t bother me much and I can say after a year or so of use, there isn’t any signs of structural change. Also when wearing it cross body (I’ll get to straps in a minute) it helps to have it lose structure to accommodate it against your body.
The inside is great, and has a small interior pocket and ring for keys.
If shape is a big concern for you, you can always just purchase a Plexiglas or cardboard bottom that is made for the bag.
To Strap or Not to Strap?
So you will notice that the resale market for the Speedy is high – lots of people love them and want them, but a lot of people get rid of them because it’s a big bag with a dinky handle. However, LV does make the Speedy with the strap. If you’re on the fence on strap v. no strap – buy the damn strap!! Yes the bag will be more money but you are giving yourself a bag with more options. The strap comes in three pieces depending on the length you like you can adjust the strap accordingly. I actually found I really like the bag worn with two straps as a longer shoulder bag – when worn this way it looks totally different than worn in the hand. One strap, many looks.
When it came to the type of canvas (comes in leather as well) I chose the Damier pattern. The reason for this is that the Damier Canvas leather sections come coated unlike the traditional LV pattern. Since this is a true everyday bag, I wanted the protection for the leather and not the patina. So far so good, the canvas is as supple as the day I bought it.
While the Speedy does get mixed reviews, I have found it to be a staple in my closet. No matter what the haters say the LV Speedy has a place in my heart. If you need me I’ll be struttin’ down the street with Speedy in hand.