Within the Netherlands and internationally, the Museum of Bags and Purses collaborates with other museums, private collectors, art academies and fashion institutes. The aim is to share and propagate expertise, know-how and inspiration within the field of handbags and handbag design.
The Museum of Bags and Purses is the largest of its kind in the world, but of course it is not the only museum with an interest in the history of bags and purses. A number of museums and private collectors worldwide are in possession of very interesting bag collections. However spectacular some of these items may be, most of them are exhibited only very rarely since private collections are not easily accessible and most museums don’t specialize in the subject of handbags. For instance, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London has a wonderful handbag collection which hardly ever leaves the museum’s depot. The Museum of Bags and Purses aims to show these ‘hidden treasures’ from museums and private collections by bringing them to our museum on loan or by purchasing them.
In the past, the Museum of Bags and Purses has exhibited handbags, trunks and suitcases on loan from the National Maritime Museum, the Railway Museum, the National Museum of Education in Amsterdam and the Louwman Museum. Recently, the museum has also collaborated closely with designers and companies such as Samsonite, Swarovski and Eastpak. Samsonite contributed to an exhibition on travellers’ bags.
Loans to Other Museums
In recent years, the Museum of Bags and Purses has also loaned a number of bags to other museums. The bags were part of exhibitions on design, photography, fashion, travel, crafts and social themes at the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, Silverware Museum Sterckshof in Antwerp, Belgium and Kulturhuset in Stockholm, Sweden.
Modemuse is a platform for fashion and suits in the Netherlands. On the platform of Modemuse you can find the fashion costume collections of twelve Dutch museums. Modemuse works among others museums such as Amsterdam Museum, Palace Het Loo National Museum and Museum of Bags and Purses.
Dutch museums possess large and small fashion and costume collections, which are not permanently visible because of the vulnerability to the public. The tens of thousands of clothes and accessories represent together the majority of five centuries of fashion and costume history, from the 16th century until now. On this platform online collections and stories are connected to each other as a source of inspiration for a wide audience.