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A Bag That Melds the ’60s, the ’90s and Today

The new Michael Kors Collection Bardot mini saddlebag in giraffe-print calf hair. $1,990, similar styles at michaelkors.com.Credit…Still life by Sharon Radisch. Set design by Rebecca Bartoshesky
A skirt suit with an animal motif from Michael Kors’s spring 1999 collection.Credit…Courtesy of Michael Kors

During his childhood in Merrick, N.Y., Michael Kors took an early interest in fashion: His maternal grandfather worked in the textile industry; his mother, Joan, was a former Revlon model. He’s said that by age 7, he knew his way around Saks Fifth Avenue. In 1981, after spending many of his college nights at Studio 54, Kors, then 21, launched his own label, which epitomized New York’s beau monde. For his spring 1999 collection, he reinterpreted the look of Ali MacGraw’s character, the pool-lounging daughter of wealthy parents, in the 1969 film “Goodbye, Columbus,” inaugurating hooded anorak dresses and introducing playful giraffe spots, a new iteration of his signature animal prints. “I’m always searching for the perfect balance of timelessness and excitement,” the designer says.

Now, for his spring 2024 collection, Kors, 64, is resurrecting that archival animal motif with his new Bardot mini saddlebag, named after the French actress Brigitte Bardot. Cut from graphic giraffe-print calf hair and crafted near Florence, Italy, the purse features a strap made of six leather-linked metal rings. Kors’s influences are varied — a barefoot Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis vacationing on Capri, the actress Marisa Berenson dining alfresco — and personal (trips taken around the world with his vivacious, bohemian mother, who died last August). “In my spring 2024 collection, the ’60s meets the ’90s meets the future,” Kors says. And it’s as eye-catching today as it was back then.

Photo assistant: Michelle Garcia

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