Coach, A Brand with a Rich History (But Are They Any Good?)

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1991
Is Coach a Quality Brand
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Last Updated on July 14, 2022

Founded in 1941, Coach has a rich history of great design and style. Coach is a luxury brand with modern clothes and accessories, most fashion fans can spot the logo from a mile away.

But, how well do you really know the brand and its legacy? Keep on reading to explore why Coach was popular in the 90s and what the brand is doing now!

What clothing is Coach famous for?

Coach is a well-known heritage brand that was extremely popular in the 1990s. At the time Coach provided mid-range luxury products and you could compare their success to other American brands like Calvin Klein, Guess, and Tommy Hilfiger.

When Coach was at its peak of popularity in the 1990s, they were known best for one product – bags! Women all over the world wore Coach bags with pride, showing their style and designer bag off to let others know they were on-trend.

While their bags are undoubtedly their largest products, Coach also designs womenswear, menswear, personalized products, and gifts too. The brand also has yearly runway shows, cementing its place as a leading fashion house. They may have been a popular 1990s brand, but they’re still popular now too!

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Coach has always taken design inspiration from the 1970s hippy rockstar aesthetic. This is often combined with preppy American styles, resulting in womenswear with a retro edgy. This is an extremely popular brand for fall/winter styles, as their autumnal color palette and bohemian vibe pair perfectly with the changing of the seasons.

Key staples from Coach include winter coats, trench coats, and bohemian maxi dresses. If you prefer accessories and bags, you’ll probably be familiar with their logo belts, watches, travel cases, sunglasses, and fragrances too. Coach is a well-rounded brand with products for every modern need.

Who is their target market?

As Coach is a luxury brand and their products are mid to high-level price points, their target customers are people with higher disposable incomes. They do target both men and women, however, their products are more popular with women and they also have more choice.

The age group they focus on is people in their 20 to 40s. They offer products that suit career women and professionals, allowing them to embrace style whilst still dressing appropriately for the office. They rival other luxury brands like Kate Spade, Michael Kors, and other high-end womenswear retailers.

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Is Coach considered a designer brand?

Coach is known as a designer brand, however, it still sits below top industry players like Chanel, Dior, and Gucci. The Coach logo signifies good design, high-quality, and luxury products, but it’s still within reach for many customers.

This is one of the reasons these designer bags became so popular in the 1990s, it allowed lower earners to have a taste of luxury without spending too much. You know a designer brand is popular when you can recognize their logo on a bag or a belt!

The history behind the brand: Coach’s origin story

Ever wondered how Coach became such a popular brand? Here’s how the heritage brand started.

Coach was established in 1941 as a family business in New York. The artisans that started the company focused on genuine leather products and excellent craft. The leather goods that were made here were made with expertise and skills passed down from generation to generation, it was all in the family genes!

As the years went by, this American brand continued to focus on luxury leather goods that reflect American values and culture, however, they expanded to creating garments out of custom fabrics too. High-quality materials and product durability have always been at the heart of this brand’s practice, perhaps why they’ve lasted the test of time!

Today, this brand still holds its place as a worldwide luxury brand. With over 500 stores in North America and a further 400 in Asia, there’s no doubt that Coach is still a very successful company.

Read:

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What are their best products?

When investigating a brand it’s important to look at their top-selling products to get an overall view of why they’re popular. This is also a great guide to shopping with them – especially if you’re looking for a gift!

Clothing, Footwear, and Accessories

While the clothing, accessories, and footwear produced by this brand is prolific and widely loved, it’s not the main product they produce. We’ve lumped these categories together as though they’re still great luxury products, many prefer Coach bags and purses.

You should still browse Coach clothing (especially their runway shows) for key designer fashion though! Not only that, but their leather trainers make great fashion shoes that can withstand wear too. Their sunglasses are also popular, so make sure you check out their summer range when the season comes around.

Handbags

Handbags from Coach are a style statement. Not only do they look luxurious, but they last for years too. Styles like Tabby, Dreamer, Rogue, and Parker are high-end styles that never go out of fashion. When you invest in one of these Coach models you’ve got a handbag for life.

As Coach has always focused on producing excellent leather goods, their wares are sturdy yet gorgeous at the same time.

Sometimes their handbags are compared to Louis Vuitton bags, as they have similar palettes and can be logo heavy. They’re a good alternative to more expensive brands like Louis Vuitton, so if you want a budget option consider the Coach collection.

Totes

Alongside their popular handbags, Coach also designs and creates leather totes. These are great options if you want a larger bag for day-to-day usage. With minimal styles and detailed leather patterns, Coach provides shoppers with chic options and different colorways.

Backpacks

You may see backpacks and be confused, but don’t worry! Coach isn’t making hiking backpacks, they also produce stylish leather bags that are perfect for ladies on the go. These backpacks are sleek and minimal, however, still large enough to be functional too. These are yet another popular bag design from the brand!

Purses and Wallets

If you want a leather accessory from Coach, but don’t want to shell out on a luxury handbag, a purse or wallet is a great option! These come in the same designs and colors as the larger totes and handbags, you can even get a matching set if you want! A purse, wristlet, or wallet also makes a great gift for Christmas too.

Read: Top 6 Brands Like Coach (Stunning Designer Alternatives)

Celebrities endorsements

Celebrity endorsements can make or break a brand, so looking at the stars Coach has worked with can paint a picture of their popularity too.

In the brand’s 2021 fall advert we saw loved stars like Jennifer Lopez, Jeremy Lin, and Michael B. Jordan wearing the brand’s merchandise in the “With Friends” campaign. This campaign focused on friendship, community, and diversity – showing Coach is moving with the younger generation and creating a more inclusive brand image.

This also boosts Coach’s relationship with the menswear market as Michael B. Jordan became the first male brand ambassador for the designer label.

Ethical Practices

Thanks to the internet, we can now check how ethical the brands we shop with are. We have the luxury to see if they align their practices to our values, this is important to do as a consumer as it holds brands accountable and forces them to adapt from harmful manufacturing.

According to Knoji, Coach does commit to ethical practices and positive environmental practices too. Coach also explains their attitudes to diversity and the planet on their responsibility page. Some brands don’t bother to include pages that show transparency, proving Coach’s commitment to improving their practices.

Though leather isn’t always considered ethical, Coach backs up their usage by only using “top-grade hides” that are processed environmentally. This creates a durable product, removing the need to buy one quickly again. Also, the brand uses 60% recycled content for packaging, showing a shift towards conscious consumerism.

Coach also supports diverse workplaces and the black community, and in June 2020 the fashion retailer committed to nonprofits that fight racial inequality.

Summary: Is the brand good?

Whether you’re feeling nostalgic for 90s Coach bags, or perhaps you’re only just learning about the brand, it’s always good to research products before you invest in them. Coach has a rich heritage of design and was popular in the 1990s, but it’s still embraced now as a contemporary design house.

We think recreating the 90s looks with vintage Coach bags is a great way to revamp your style. On the other hand, these bags can be expensive – especially if they’re vintage, so make sure you’ll wear the bag with a lot of outfits before you go ahead and splash out on one!

What do you think of Coach? Do you remember this brand in the 90s? Let us know your thoughts!

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