“Luxury is a dream and revealing too much of what goes on behind the scenes would spoil the magic.” - House of Goyard
While you might recognize Goyard’s colorful chevron print, you may not know much about the luxury brand, and that’s because the House of Goyard prides themselves on being elusive. Unlike other top luxury brands, Goyard doesn’t advertise, speak to the media, or sell any of their four product categories—men’s and women’s handbags, travel goods, accessories, pet accessories and special orders—on their website. They’d prefer to remain rare, unattainable, exclusive, and mysterious.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF GOYARD
Founded in Paris in 1853, Goyard is one of the world’s oldest leather goods makers still in business today. Established just one year ahead of Louis Vuitton, the path to the House of Goyard began in 1845 when 17-year-old Francois Goyard became an apprentice for expert Parisian trunk-makers Pierre-Francois Martin and Louis-Henri Morel of Maison Morel.
Specializing in box-making, trunk-making, and packing, Maison Morel packed, folded and protected items belonging to local Parisians, and was a favorite of the French aristocracy. When Louis-Henri Morel passed away in 1852, Francois Goyard took over the business and changed the name to the House of Goyard and he ran the business for 32 years and later gifted the business to his son Edmond in 1885.
Edmond Goyard changed the name to E. Goyard Ainé and transformed the business into a luxury destination. He launched their first advertisements, opened up new stores and offices, and developed products for cars and dogs too. In 1891, Goyard was named as an official seller to royals, heads of state, and presidents.
In 1892, Edmond created the Goyardine canvas which was inspired by his family history as log drivers. The dotted pattern symbolizes the log drives which then turns into a triple chevron design in the shape of a Y which is the central letter of the Goyard family name. Edmond also signed his canvas creations in white and the address of their Paris store is written in brown. Initially Goyard’s signature print was hand-painted onto the coated canvas, but today it’s done by mechanized etching and layering of dye, but a Goyard artisan will still hand-paint a customer’s initials.
As one of the world’s most prestigious trunk makers, Robert Goyard, along with hotel mogul Charles Ritz and jeweler Louis Voucheron created the Comitè Vendome in 1936 to shape the luxury sector in France.
To remain as exclusive as possible, Goyard kept the business in the family until 1998 when Goyard aficionado and avid collector, Jean-Michel Signoles, purchased the brand. He’s credited with reviving and restoring Goyard’s heritage to its original glory.
TOP FIVE GOYARD BAGS
Since individuals simply can’t walk into a Goyard boutique or hop on their site to purchase one of these highly-coveted designs, one of the only places people can score a Goyard bag is on the secondhand market. We’ve rounded up the top five Goyard bags based on their popularity and current market value.
The St. Louis Tote
Goyard’s most popular and iconic bag, the St. Louis bag is an diamond investment piece. The original Neverfull bag — it was Louis Vuitton’s inspiration—features an open top, dual-rolled handles, an inner pocket and matching detachable pouch. Crafted in waterproof Goyardine canvas, it was originally designed as a reversible beach tote and is available in three different sizes.
The Plumet Wallet-on-Strap
Inspired by the removable pouch that accompanies the St. Louis Tote, this lightweight crossbody design is perfect for someone who’s always on the go. Divided into three different compartments with card slots, an internal zip pocket, detachable shoulder strap and top-snap closure, this luxury essential also can be carried as a clutch.
The Cap Vert
This lightweight crossbody is crafted in Goyardine canvas and features calfskin trim, an adjustable shoulder strap, single exterior pocket, zip-top closure and canvas lining. Since this bag is so difficult to find, the secondhand price keeps increasing every year, making it another excellent investment piece.
Goyardine Anjou Bag
Reminiscent of the St. Louis bag, the Anjou Bag — named for Duc d’Anjou, the younger brother of King Louis IX — is another lightweight tote crafted of signature Goyardine canvas. Available in three sizes, this open-top tote is reversible and comes with dual flat shoulder straps, leather trim and lining, a matching pouch and contrast stitching.
Inspired by the summer houses above the town of Clamecy in central France and the bags local timber craftsmen used to carry tools, the Belvedere is a messenger bag that features an adjustable shoulder strap, front flap closure, exterior pocket, canvas lining and three interior pockets. Available in three different sizes, this crossbody design is in high demand.
Content and images for this blog post have been referenced from LePrix.