What signifiers would you expect to alert you to the fact that you are talking to a Queen? A gold crown? A fleet of arms guards on horseback? Well, if you are lucky enough to meet the Queen of England, and not know you are in her company, then take a second to check her arms because hooked to her wing will the ultimate Queen Elizabeth accessories statement, a Launer handbag.
But before we dig deep into the Queen’s particular penchant for Launer, we answer a question that’s on everyone’s lips. . . What does a Royal carry in her bag anyway? Bare in mind that the Queen probably doesn’t carry around her palace keys and her credit card. Here is what Majesty Magazine (actual real publication) confirmed about the contents: “The Queen carries a comb, a handkerchief, a small gold compact and a tube of lipstick in her handbag. On Sundays, she carries paper money to place in the collection plate at church.” Kind of a let-down, right? Never mind, moving on. . .
The Queen is famed for carrying her handbag to every occasion, even the most formal occasions where she has been required to wear the full on royal bling (crown included). No occasion is too grand for our Monarch to accessorise with her Launer, and it’s all made easier by the fact that the Queen is said to own 200 of the brand’s bags, some of them specially customised (with extra long handles so that the bag doesn’t get in the way of hand-shaking).
Rumour has it that the Queen uses her handbag to signal to her staff when it’s time to move on while greeting people, although Launer CEO Gerald Bodmer denies this – telling the Daily Mail ‘It’s rubbish, I’ve never seen her have to do that.’ Stay alert people, and see if the Queen really does give the Royal snub with her bag.
The Majesty’s signature bags are all handmade, a process that takes around 10 days (although you can bet the Queen gets a fast-track service). Price tags average at £1000, with the top tote costing £1,650. It’s not clear if the Queen has to pay for her arm company, but Launer CEO, Gerald Bodmer, did confirm that the company plans to gift Queen Elizabeth a new bag for her 90th birthday (which is today, by the way, Happy Birthday Queenie!).
Launer was founded in 1941 and, even then, championed handmade goods while others were looking overseas for their manufacturing. These values are still important even today, with the company claiming to make 10s’ and 20s’ rather than thousands. The Queen is said to appreciate the brand’s quality, still wearing some of the bags the Queen Mother wore (and reportedly sending her own bags for repairs, rather than binning).
The Queen’s go-to is the black-patent Traviata, costing £1,550 but she also owns several versions of the Adagio in black and patent cream, the Bellini, the Royale, the Lulu in cream and the Encore in black.
The Queen isn’t the only face of Launer. Actresses Dame Judi Dench and Dame Maggie Smith are often snapped carrying one, while Camilla married Prince Charles carrying one (an attempt to get in with her mother-in-law?). Before you start thinking that Launer is for ladies of a certain age, know that Paloma Faith took to Twitter to show fans her new Launer bag.
In fact, let us surprise you with this perfectly Royal offering from the handbag brand with the Monarch’s seal of approval:
Traviata Yellow £1,550
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