Style Guide: Louis Vuitton Noé

This time we're guiding you through everything related to the Noé from Louis Vuitton. How did it come to be and why does it look like it does? How do you style it and what materials does it come in? Read all about it below.

The birth and rise of the Noé

The design of the Noé bucket bag actually stems all the way back from 1832 when a Champagne producer asked Gaston Louis Vuitton – the grandson of the Louis Vuitton founder – to come up with a sturdy yet stylish bag in which he could transport bottles of Champagne without breaking them. You can therefor place five bottles right side up and one upside down in the middle of the four. The drawstring closure helped the bottle stay still to avoid bumping and breaking.

The Noé was one of the bestsellers from Louis Vuitton for most of the 90s and today the Noé is still as popular as ever!

As seen on

The Noé bag from Louis Vuitton was a hit from the day it hit the shelves. It’s perfect for everyday wear as well as a travel bag, so it’s no surprise that the iconic bag has been spotted on the shoulder of almost every A-lister in Hollywood as well as your favorite influencers – and still is today!

The inspiration behind the icon

As mentioned above, the inspiration for the Noé bag comes from being able to carry five bottles of bubbly and the bag still features many of the same attributes as the original: The iconic shape, the generous volume and drawstring closure. The bag has an adjustable leather strap so you can easily throw it over your shoulder or wear it cross-body. The Noé is trimmed with natural cowhide leather and is lined with textile.

Noé is the French translation of the name Noah as a nod to the biblical story of Noah’s Arc.The bag is named after the character of Noah because he returns to dry land after the great food and becomes the first winemaker of all time. This is the first mention of an alcoholic drink in the Bible, so Noah is actually said to be the starting point of alcohol consumption in the world. This perfectly matches the original use of the Noé.

The Noé is probably the most popular ‘bucket bag’ and the bag that most people will think of when they hear the term. Because the Noé turned out to be a massive hit for the Louis Vuitton, the brand expanded the Noé family with different sizes.


This classic Louis Vuitton bag is currently available in four sizes: Regular, Petit Noé, Noé BB and Nano. The regular Now measures 27.5 cm x 36 cm x 20 cm (length x height x width). The Petit Noé measures 27 cm x 27 cm x 21 cm meaning it’s a lot shorter in height than the original Noé. The Noé BB measures 22 cm x 24 cm x 15 cm. The Noé BB is taller than it’s long meaning this size of the bag has different dimensions compared to the regular and the Petit Noé.

Lastly, we have the Nano Noé measuring 13 cm x 16 cm x 10 cm. This bag is quite a bit smaller than the other sizes. It still has the adjustable shoulder strap but because of the size it also has a removable top handle so you can carry it as a handbag.

All sizes have an adjustable strap, drawstring closure and gold hardware. Because the bag closes with a drawstring, you don’t see much hardware on the bag.

Photo: The Vintage Bar


The Noé bag from Louis Vuitton was first created in the house’s Monogram Canvas. This coated canvas was created by Gaston Louis Vuitton as an homage to his grandfather, the creator of the Franch fashion house. This sturdy canvas is water and scratch resilient making this a great choice for an everyday bag.

After the Noé proved to be a big success, Louis Vuitton decided to also make it in Epi leather. Epi leather was first created by Georges and his son Gaston Louis Vuitton in 1920. The leather was inspired by “fields of wheat rippling in the sunshine” as described on the Louis Vuitton website. Epi leather is available in many different colors, both muted and vibrant, and a Noé bag in Epi leather is a great way to give the classic bag a new look. You can shop the bag in solid Epi or with contrasting trim.

Damier Azur Canvas is another key print from Louis Vuitton. Unlike the Damier Ebene Canvas, the Damier Azur Canvas is white and gray/blue-ish and will therefor stand out from the other classic Louis Vuitton prints. The classic Damier print in this new color way was first introduced on 2006. Just like the Monogram Canvas, the Damier Azur Canvas is also water and scratch resilient.

Besides the above mentioned prints, the Nano Noé is also available in Monogram Empreinte embossed with supple grained cowhide leather in a gray and creme combination.


Louis Vuitton has just unveiled a new collaboration with Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama but the first time the pair worked together was all the way back in 2012. This was during the Marc Jacobs era for the French fashion house. Yayoi Kusama’s trademark has always been pole dots and that’s exactly what she brought to her collaborations with Louis Vuitton. The most recent collection sees her multicolored signature dots scattered on the Monogram Canvas.

Takashi Murakami is another Japanese artist who Louis Vuitton has collaborated with on some iconic prints. Takashi Murakami is the mastermind behind the Monogram Multicolore – the multi-colored monogram print which was adored by all the ‘it’-girls of the noughties!

The Noé was a part of this collaboration and it was possible to shop the Noé in both the black and the white Monograme Mullticolore.

A more sturdy versions of the classic Noé bag has now been introduced by the French brand: The Néonoé. This bag was launched in 2017 and provides the original with a stronger and smoother structure. The Noé is a soft canvas bag whereas the Neonoé has structured walls as well as a removable top handle that can transform the shoulder bag to a handbag.

What can you use it for?

Even though the original purpose of the Noé probably isn’t relevant – unfortunately – it’s still highly functional still. Because of the solid leather base in cowhide leather, the bag is highly durable. This means that the bag is commonly used by working women and off-duty moms alike. The regular size Noé is the roomiest, but given the dimension of all the bags they’re all pretty roomy. You can definitely store all you need for the day and then some in this Louis Vuitton classic!

Given the casual exterior and the size of the Noé, it’s not your regular evening bag and most people will view it as a great everyday bag. The Neonoé is available in black Epi leather which makes it more evening appropriate but given the shape we’d say the Noé and Neonoé are both better for day-to-day wear.


Photos: The Vintage Bar & lering


If you purchase a Noé in Damier Azur or Monogram Canvas, most of the bag will be made of canvas. As previously mentioned, this material is good for everyday wear as it won’t easily scratch or stain from water. The bottom and shoulder strap is however made from Vachetta leather which is not quite as sturdy. This leather might stain from water but most importantly it’ll turn dark when exposed to oil. It’s therefor a really good idea to not handle the bag right after moisturizing or sanitizing your hands. When you come home from having worn your Noé you can always run a dry cloth over the strap and bottom to avoid dust and any oil buildup.

One of the key characteristics of Epi leather is its ability to withstand different weather conditions. This means that even if you purchase a Noé in Epi leather it’ll be sturdy and a good every day companion just like the Canvas variations. Epi leather is however more prone to scratching than the Louis Vuitton canvases are. You should therefor keep your Epi Noé away from anything abrasive to avoid unnecessary scratching.

As with any other Louis Vuitton bag, you should always stuff the bag when it’s not in use to avoid cracks in the canvas. You can stuff with paper or with fabric – a rolled up sweater is an easy choice. Store your Noé in a dark spot at room temperature – we always suggest the dust bag – so it won’t get sun damage. It’s important to store your luxury handbags in a place where they can breath. Some people think it’s a good idea to store them in their box but this can limit airflow which can create moldy and damp environments which you don’t want. Again, we suggest the dust bag!

Written by Alberte Gram
Alberte Gram is a fashion writer based in London.
The people pictured are not associated with The Archive
or The Vintage Bar, and do not endorse the products shown.