Dior’s ‘95.22’ handbag reinvents a 1990s icon

Dior’s ‘95.22’ handbag sees Maria Grazia Chiuri reimagine a house classic, first made famous on the arm of Princess Diana

Dior 95.22 handbag making of
Dior’s ‘95.22’ handbag, which draws inspiration from the 1995 ‘Lady Dior’
(Image credit: Courtesy of Dior)

The year 1995 was when the emblematic ‘Lady Dior’ handbag first became a part of the Parisian house’s distinct style lexicon, designed by then-creative director Gianfranco Ferré. Originally named the ‘Chouchou’, the handbag – recognisable for its stitched ‘cannage’ quilting inspired by Napoleon III chairs – is forever linked with Princess Diana, who was gifted the style by the then-first lady of France, Bernadette Chirac. She would go on to carry it for the rest of her lifetime, and it is from her that the ladylike accessory takes its regal name. 

Stories like these have fascinated current creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri during her tenure at the house so far. An avid student of the fabled Dior archive – which spans the house’s collections from its founding under Christian Dior in 1946 to the present day – she reimagines archival styles in her own poetic style. For Autumn/Winter 2023, as part of a collection that she deemed her most French yet, she paid homage to the ‘Lady Dior’ handbag with the ‘95.22’, its name referencing the years of the handbag’s invention and revival.

The making of Dior handbag

(Image credit: Courtesy of Dior)

Chiuri says that she hoped to instil the style with new ‘modernity’; here, that figures in the inclusion of a long shoulder strap to be worn cross-body (the original style is hand-held) and a softly curved silhouette. What links the styles is the ‘cannage’ quilting, an intricate criss-crossing motif made possible with what the house calls ‘the constantly renewed virtuosity of the Dior ateliers’. In the ‘95.22’, the original quilting is replaced with a ‘macro-cannage’, a process created using a ’high-frequency technique’. First, the leather is cut by hand, then, using ‘wave energy’ for a combination of heat and pressure, the pieces are combined to achieve the handbag’s unique architectural shape.

The reinvention is completed with signature hanging ’Dior’ letter charms – a recognisable link between past and present as Chiuri reimagines the house’s distinct emblems anew.

Watch the making of the Dior ‘95.22’ below.


Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*. Having previously held roles at 10, 10 Men and AnOther magazines, he joined the team in 2022. His work has a particular focus on the moments where fashion and style intersect with other creative disciplines – among them art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and profiling the industry’s leading figures and brands.