It was back in the '90s when the term 'It bag' was first thrown around. It bags were the de facto signifier of a fashion brand's relevance. Every brand worth its salt had to have at least one signature bag that was immediately recognisable based purely on its unique design. It bags were widely coveted not only because they represented a creative milestone, they were also not (usually) excessively produced.
While it is much more difficult to claim the tag nowadays—blame it on the need to produce more and more, which has affected creativity to a degree—the legacy is such that once an It bag, always an It bag.
For a storied couture house like Givenchy, the It bag phenomenon is far from a foreign concept. In 2010, the house introduced the Antigona under the creative directorship of Riccardo Tisci. The Antigona took its name after Antigone, a heroine from Greek mythology who's known for her emotional strength and unwavering beliefs. In the same fashion that Antigone was tough in her resolve, the Antigona is crafted in sturdy leathers with clean lines and a defined geometric construction. Its shape references a bowling bag but reworked with tapered ends.
Givenchy's essence is based around the concept of duality. That's especially apparent with the original Antigona—a structured silhouette that's a juxtaposition to the softness and fluidity of traditional femininity. A decade later and the Antigona has now gone through an evolution that further emphasises on duality.
The Antigona Soft, like the name suggests, is the more supple sibling to the Antigona. There's no mistaking the connection between the two. Both feature top handles and a removable shoulder strap, as well as that iconic shape. The Antigona Soft made its first appearance in Givenchy's pre-fall 2020 womenswear collection before making its menswear debut on the autumn/winter 2020 runway in a maxi style for a more oversized proportion.
Its roomy and slouchy design make for a versatile piece that traipses the line between sophistication and everyday casual. The Antigona Soft does bear somewhat of a resemblance to a suit bag but with added practical details and crafted in a variety of fabrications—a woven leather iteration made of strips of black, white and red leathers, a wool version printed with the Givenchy chains print, and a classic model in black leather.
It bags may predominantly refer to categorically women's bags. The Antigona Soft however, has all the makings of an It bag that spans across both the men's and women's segments, especially one that's buoyed by the legacy of an already iconic bag. If anything, the Antigona Soft is an excellent representation of duality: a complement to the original that's designed for the contemporary man who defies traditions.
They say that, 'if it ain't broke, don’t fix it'. But if change is a constant, this evolved Antigona is a reflection of the times that we're living in—inclusive and bold.
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