The Museum of Bags and Purses is a unique museum showing the history of the (hand)bag in Western culture from the late Middle Ages to the present day, including the work of contemporary designers. The collection reflects the cultural history of the (hand)bag over a period of 500 years. The museum is the only museum of handbags in Europe and the largest of its kind in the world, with a collection of more than 5.000 bags, pouches, suitcases, purses and other matching accessories such as compacts, shoes and hats.
Like many other museums, the Museum of Bags and Purses owes its existence to a private collector’s passion. Over a period of thirty years, collectors Hendrikje and Heinz Ivo collected many bags and purses, slowly forming a unique collection. A personal fascination for the history of the handbag, its materials and techniques, its stories and craftsmanship, developed into a full-scale museum. From the beginning, the collectors acquired items with a sharp eye for quality and with a view to illustrating the history of the handbag in Western culture as complete as possible. As a result, the collection now receives international praise for its variety and quality. In 2014, Fodor’s travel website named the Museum of Bags and Purses as one of the 10 Best Fashion Museums in the world.