Founded in 1846, Loewe (pronounced Low-AY-vay) is a Spanish luxury fashion house producing high quality clothing and leather goods. One of their most famous handbag designs is the Loewe Flamenco. Loewe's Flamenco bag was masterminded by Stuart Vevers, who moved from Mulberry to work for Loewe between 2007-2013. The bag was introduced in 2010 and became an instant hit, with the Flamenco now being considered as one of the brand's iconic bags.
In 2013/14, after Loewe took on J.W. Anderson as their creative director, the Flamenco bags had a re-model and the classic tassels were replaced with chunky, modern knots. These Flamenco Knot bags are current-season designs and are still available to purchase new from Selfridges etc. However, the classic Flamenco bags featuring tassels are now only available to buy pre-loved.
The classic Loewe Flamenco bag is available in three sizes and as I've been lucky enough to handle all of them, I thought that I would briefly discuss their strengths and weaknesses. I think this would be helpful for anyone who's interested in purchasing one of these bags, or for anyone who's generally interested in learning more about the quality of Loewe's bags. For reference, my photos depict Flamenco 22 (yellow) and Flamenco 30 (beige and black, and metallic brown) models.
General Information about Loewe Flamenco Bags
- They're made from Nappa leather - which is incredibly soft and smooth.
- One benefit of using this sort of leather is that it's very lightweight, meaning even the largest size of Flamenco bag is still very light to carry without any compromise on the quality.
- One disadvantage is that this sort of leather is easy to damage (eg. scratches/stains).
- All three sizes of bag have adjustable straps than can be worn long, or doubled up. This means that the bags can be worn on the shoulder or across the body.
- All three sizes have internal dividers which divide the bag into three compartments, as well as one small zipped pocket. This adds functionality to the otherwise unstructured shape.
- The bag is held closed by one medium sized magnetic popper - and in my experience these are generally very reliable.
- All three sizes will feature, somewhere within the bag, a leather tab with a serial number.
- The branded Loewe plaque is often metallic, but on some earlier models (such as the beige and black Flamenco bag in my photos) there is a branded leather plaque instead.
- When the metallic hardware on the bags is gold you can expect this to be real gold plate.
Flamenco 22: €1,200 rrp / 22 x 22.5 x 11 cm
This is the smallest size of Loewe's classic Flamenco bag. Whilst it isn't tiny - especially compared to the micro-bag trend - it is quite small. It's a good option for anyone with a petite frame, and the smaller size does make the unstructured shape a little more user-friendly. It's easy to quickly find exactly what you're looking for in this model of the bag.
The price difference between the 22 and the 30 isn't that great, but I personally found the 22 model considerably less luxe. It's definitely because of how lightweight the bag is when worn - in this smallest size it really is as light as a feather, and I guess I'm just used to heavier designer bags. However, for anyone who is sick and tired of sore shoulders then this bag (in any of the sizes, really) will be a godsend. You can fit a lot into it compared to similarly sized structured bags, and the multi-functional straps give it a great deal of versatility. Overall, this is a nice lightweight option for a small, everyday style of bag.
Flamenco 30: €1,400 rrp / 29.5 x 28.5 x 12 cm
This is the medium size of Loewe classic Flamenco bag, and it's probably my favourite out of the three. It's the most function of the three models because it's got that "Goldilocks" size - in the bigger 36 model it can be hard to find what you're looking for in the roomy depths of the bag, whereas I wouldn't be able to fit everything I needed in the 22. It also feels every so slightly more luxurious than the 22, it's something to do with it being bigger and heavier.
I think that the unstructured shape suits this size of bag, and it looks good on most frames. Although the design is all about understated luxury, the Flamenco is a bag that says a lot without being that flashy and this is even more true of the 30 model. As a result, I personally prefer the colourful Flamenco bags in the 22 model - to add a playful pop of colour to an outfit -and the more demure/classic colours in the 30 model.
Flamenco 36: $2,600 rrp / 36 x 33.7 x 19 cm
This is the largest size of the Loewe classic Flamenco, and it's the only size that I personally own (my bag is pictured above, and the colour is called 'Mink'). I've toyed with the idea of selling mine and replacing it with a pre-loved Flamenco 30 bag, but I can't deny that I'm in love with the luxuriousness of this bag. Unlike the 22 and the 30, the 36 both feels and looks unashamedly expensive. It's large size definitely has its down sides (which I'll go into) but it does make it impossible to ignore. On anyone with a petite frame this bag would look quite oversized (which is probably why you won't spot this model being carried by many celebrities), but for me personally it just looks and feels like a medium-large handbag.
Despite looking and feeling incredibly (I really can't stress how lovely Loewe's Nappa leather handbags are) I do find this bag impractical to use. I often misplace items within it's oversized interior, and in this bag in particular I wish there were just two internal partitions rather than three - it would, ironically, make it easier to find your belongings. I also find that in the larger 36 size I'm much more worried about the smooth leather becoming damaged, as due to the size of the bag it is much more likely to brush against other pedestrians, or furniture or walls. I feel as though I have to really baby the bag to keep it in its best condition.
What do you think of Loewe's Flamenco bags?
Which size do you think would be best for you?
Which size do you think would be best for you?
The pre-loved metallic brown Loewe Flamenco 30 bag featured in this post is currently for sale. If you're interested in seeing more photos of the bag, and getting a quote on the price, then please email firstname.lastname@example.org. And this is a good example of the sort of pre-loved designer bag that you can expect to find on my new online store - Stored and Adored - once it launches.