Marian Keyes on her heart missing a beat at the sight of . . . Coach
Thought of a Coach shop used to bring on visions of dull and dowdy, but not anymore
“Suddenly, in a shop-window, was a bag so beautiful my eyeballs nearly burst.” Photograph: Courtesy of Brown Thomas
Coach! Look, I know, but bear with me, will you? No longer dullard, middle-America, cautious, life-sapping stuff, this is new Coach, reinvented Coach, pivoting-in-an-entirely-fresh-direction Coach.
Their unique selling proposition used to be the quality of their leather; so wonderful that their bags had a life-time guarantee. Can you imagine? The horror of being stuck with one bone-crushingly tasteful bag for all of eternity! (I know I’ve a tendancy to overconsume, but come on. Lifelong handbag monogamy will never work.)
My heartbeat used to actually slow down whenever I passed a Coach shop and after a while I never noticed them at all.
Around the late 1990s, brand lustre deteriorated further with the launch of their fabric bags and shoes monogramed with the letter C. Grim. The stock value was going through the floor and rumour had it that to send a person a death threat, all you needed to do was leave a Coach wallet on their doorstep.
But then something happened.
I was first alerted to the seismic shift last year in Florida, in some fancy mall. I should have been spending quality time with my loved ones in the Disney-park thing, but sure look . . . Suddenly, in a shop-window, was a bag so beautiful my eyeballs nearly burst. It was a breezy, swingy affair clustered with leather flowers in a variety of colours and sizes. Almost unable to see, I checked the shop name. Coach. Coach?
I lurched in and accosted a lady. “When you say you’re Coach, are you like, an entirely different Coach? Not that deep-fried-potato-skins soccer-mom shite?”
But it was the deep-fried-potato-skins soccer-mom shite Coach! However, with a new designer – who was playing a blinder. Not just with bags, but with dresses, handbag, straps and charms. And now shoes. Look at them! I mean, look at them! These are exciting, beautiful, and yes! – actually cool.
Now some caveats: it’s a spendy brand. I’m sorry about that but the sales will be starting any minute. Second, Brown Thomas carries some stock but for access to the entire range, go on the UK Coach site and use ParcelMotel.