Chanel and Gucci are among the most popular luxury brands, both representing vastly different styles. If you haven’t yet decided between Chanel vs Gucci for your next purchase, use this article to help you choose between the two.
This Chanel Vs Gucci article will help you decide which brand is better suited to your budget and your style through the histories of both brands, top luxury goods from each, and the differences between the two. Let’s get started!
Chanel Vs Gucci:
The History of Chanel
This historic brand of French origin, Chanel was founded by couturière Gabrielle Chanel in 1909 when she opened her millinery shop in Paris. The brand quickly grew, which allowed Coco Chanel to open her now-famous store at 31 Rue Cambon in the epicenter of Paris.
The prêt-à-porter and haute-couture fashions sold at the store included blazers, skirts, blouses, and suits, made from soft and relaxed fabrics such as linen, flannel, and jersey. Chanel was part of the revolution in the fashion world in the 1920s that removed the restrictive corsets and tightly-laced dresses and replaced them with looser, more functional dresses, skirts, and blouses.
After Coco Chanel’s passing in 1971, the brand was not reinvigorated until 1983 when the unforgettable Karl Lagerfeld became the chief designer.
Clothes, classic bags, and accessories from the brand were sold in department stores all over the world. Under the guide of Lagerfeld, the treasured tweed skirt suit became emblematic of the brand.
Since the passing of Lagerfeld in 2019, Virginie Viard, who had worked at Chanel for over 30 years, became the latest Creative Director. Viard has bought her own twist to the timeless elegance of Chanel and iconic fashions, whilst continuing to show multiple shows each year in exotic locations all over the world.
History of Gucci
The Italian Fashion House of Gucci was founded by Guccio Gucci in 1921 in Italy, whilst his son, Aldo, brought the brand worldwide, opening stores in New York, Paris, and London for the first time.
Guccio Gucci was inspired to start his eponymous brand whilst working as a bellhop at the Savoy Hotel in London and handling luxury leather suitcases. Gucci moved back to his hometown of Florence and originally began with leather luggage.
Aldo convinced his father to expand the brand, finally opening a shop in Rome in 1938. After World War Two, Gucci could get back to creating beautiful luggage and bags, including their first bamboo-handled bag in a saddlebag shape while the brand expanded massively.
After some family feuds, Dawn Mello took over as creative director in 1989, after which Tom Ford famously stepped into his shoes from 1995 to 2004. After leaving to pursue his own brand, Frida Giannini became creative director and in 2015, the visionary Alessandro Michele was handed the reigns as creative director. The brand has blossomed ever since.
Michele looked back into the brand’s history and brought back artistic styles such as the GG logo and the Jackie O bag, whilst bringing fresh ideas in the form of the ‘geek-chic’ aesthetic and the Dionysus bag. In 2021, Gucci took the top spot on the most-searched brand list, proving itself to be one of the most valuable luxury fashion brands in the world.
Differences between Chanel and Gucci
There are quite a few differences to consider between Chanel vs Gucci in the fashion industry, and the differences aren’t limited to just their aesthetic.
1. Resale Value
Both brands are ideal if you are looking for an investment piece thanks to their high quality and superior raw materials.
However, as you may know, Chanel bags and other items typically retain their value more, and you can even fetch a higher price for your bag on the resale market than what you originally paid. Chanel is considered one of the best investment brands among all luxury brands, second only to Hermès.
While you will still be able to sell your Gucci items for a high price on re-sale websites, don’t expect to make a profit, unless you have a particularly sought-after piece.
2. Price points
Chanel and Gucci have quite different price ranges, especially for their bags. Nowadays, it’s quite difficult to find a Chanel bag under $4,000, unless you’re talking about wallet-on-chains or other micro bags.
The most popular Chanel bags range from $5,000 to $10,000, whilst for a Gucci bag, you could spend anywhere from $790 to $7,700, which the most popular bags retailing for $2,000-$3,000. This demonstrates how Gucci is the more affordable option out of the two brands.
3. Brand Aesthetic
If you are considering the style and the aesthetic of the brands, then Chanel and Gucci give you two different options. Chanel fits with a more traditional timeless style with certain silhouettes of their bags being brought out in different fabrics and colors, including tweed.
Gucci has a much greater range of styles. Some releases may appeal to younger consumers, looking to stay up to date with the current fashions, whilst the Gucci Beloved collection will perhaps cater to those of you looking for long-lasting designs.
4. outlet stores
If you are looking to get a great deal, Gucci is the brand for you since they have a fantastic range of outlet stores all over the world. There are 46 Gucci outlet stores across North and South America, Europe, and Asia, and you can check out the location of these stores on the Gucci site to figure out which store is closest to you!
At a Gucci outlet, you can find pieces discounted between 35% and 65% off the original price, but there will only be a limited range of products available. You will often find discontinued or out-of-season luxury products at a Gucci outlet, including older or seasonal shoes, bags, and clothing, as well as irregular pieces that have some sort of small mistake or error.
Chanel, on the other hand, does not offer outlet stores, so it is not possible to pick up anything from Chanel for a discounted price. Chanel, as one of the top luxury brands in the world, does not offer discounts and very rarely holds sales on new items.
Our Top Picks from Chanel Vs Gucci
1. Shoulder bags
If you are looking for a classic shoulder bag that is perfect for everyday wear, then these two will be perfect for you.
The Gucci Jackie bag is part of their Beloved collection and is an understated style bought back to shoppers by Alessandro Michele. The gold piston clasp is the same as it was in 1961 when this bag was first introduced. The smooth black leather is gloriously versatile and the adjustable buckled strap makes this the ideal bag to style in many different ways!
As for Chanel, you cannot get any more recognizable than the highly-coveted Chanel Flap bag. This bag has been fashionable for decades and it’s easy to see why.
The quilted leather and leather threaded gold chain strap will add beautiful detailing to any outfit. While the small and medium sizes of this bag are currently the most popular, the jumbo size is great if you are looking for something that will hold a little more.
Out of all bags on this list, this bag is by far the best investment piece that you should consider adding to your collection if you are interested in bags with a fantastic resale value.
2. CrossBody Bags
If you love having your hands free, consider getting a crossbody or a camera bag. Both of these smaller shoulder bags will work from day to night – you just can’t go wrong!
The Gucci Marmont bag is part of Gucci’s beloved collection displaying how it is an eternally stylish design. The adjustable strap means it can be worn across the body or over the shoulder and it is available in multiple different colors making it perfect for everyone. This timeless style is available from Gucci for $1,650.
So many of Chanel’s bags are quintessential, ageless styles including the Chanel Boy bag. This is a slightly more structured bag in a supple leather with aged gold hardware and the gorgeous CC logo push look.
The pocket inside also means it will store all your everyday essentials – available for only $4,555 from Fashionphile.
3. Top Handle bags
Top handle bags are quickly coming bag into style and Gucci and Chanel have some perfect options if you are looking to buy one.
The bamboo handle on top of the Gucci Bamboo 1947 bag is an element that has been pulled from the Gucci archives. If you are looking for versatility then this bag is ideal with its additional wide crossbody strap, which makes it obviously Gucci. The interior also features two pockets, with one fitted with a mirror – all for only $4,300!
If you are after the Chanel Flap with a bit of a twist then the top-handle Coco Bag is perfect for you! This style is not always available from Chanel itself so check out Fashionphile instead.
The leather threaded chain strap and diamond-quilted leather give you classic Chanel elements while the top handle adds versatility and functionality. The pocketed interior perfectly finishes off this stunning bag.
Alternatively, you may prefer the look of the Trendy CC bag. Both of the bags are very similar in design, but the Trendy bag features a metal bar on the outside with “Chanel” written on it.
Although both brands have iconic bags, they also have iconic shoes! The Gucci Jordaan loafers have been worn by every high fashion celebrity and you can see why.
The classic shape, black leather, and horsebit hardware mean this show will transition from day to night and will go with virtually any outfit. It’s the perfect high-heel alternative for just $920.
Chanel has a similarly famous flat – the Ballerina Flat. This style of shoe is reinvented every season in different colors and fabrics but you can’t go wrong with a timeless neutral shade, which can often be found on Fashionphile.
The CC logo features on the front of the shoe and the adorable little bow adds extra detail – available for $860.
Gucci and Chanel products are often at top-end prices and so there are a few important things you should consider before splurging.
Ask yourself questions like What will this item go with? How much wear will you get out of the item? Is this item suitable for day looks or night looks or both?
If you are thinking of buying a new bag, shoes or accessories from either of these brands, it’s important to make sure that there are existing items in your wardrobe that this new piece will go with.
It’s important to consider the material of the item, especially if you are buying a new handbag. Different leathers stand up to daily wear in different ways – textured leather, such as pebbled leather, is much better suited for everyday use.
Chanel in particular is famous for making most of their classic bags in caviar and lamb skin leather. Out of the two, caviar is far more withstanding to wear and tear. Lambskin may look beautiful and be buttery soft, but the brand doesn’t recommend it for everyday use.
Finally, the color of your purchase is always a key consideration. Darker colors will look cleaner and fresher for longer, while neutral tones will work with an endless array of outfits.
But sometimes it’s fun to go for a quirky, unique color – if you often wear dark colors, this could be a great way to add a pop of color to your ensemble.
Both brands are fantastic so, to some extent, it comes down to personal preference: Which brand aesthetic you prefer and how much your budget is are both going to be important deciding factors when it comes to purchasing an item from one of these brands.
Chanel items are instantly recognizable, and if you’ve been hankering after an iconic Chanel flap bag or pair of shoes then go for it! If you aren’t bothered about the classic Chanel design, and fancy trying something a little different then go for a Gucci purchase.
In the end, the decision is down to personal preference – if you have put love and care into your purchase and wear it often, then you are bound to love your new Chanel or Gucci item.
We hope you enjoyed this comparison between Chanel vs Gucci! For more luxury fashion ideas, make sure to check out the related articles below!