British designer Daniel Lee produced some wildly successful accessories during his tenure as creative director at Bottega Veneta. The baton has since been passed to Parisian talent Matthieu Blazy, but Lee’s much-loved Cassette bag remains a firm favourite with A-listers.
Soon after Lee’s official Bottega debut for autumn/winter 2019 – his very first appointment was pre-fall, shown in the brand’s Milan headquarters two months prior – fashion plates were lining up for his accessories. As Vogue Runway director Nicole Phelps concluded in her review of his inaugural show: “Watching Lee hone his vision isn’t going to be boring.”
Lee’s #NewBottega honoured timeless house signatures like the intrecciato leather weave, but with a distinctly contemporary appeal. The Cassette – which comes in paintbox brights as well as neutrals, and is instantly recognisable thanks to its inflated weave – is the style fashion fans fell particularly hard for. Three years after its inception, it’s still a familiar sight on the fashion circuit.
Early adopters include Rihanna and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, who have both acquired substantial amounts of Bottega over the past couple of years. Both women own myriad pillowy Pouches as well as padded Cassettes. Supermodel and noted minimalist Rosie bought the cream version, while Rih’s wardrobe is home to Bottega bags in lilac, yellow, hot pink, baby blue and white. Of course, the buzziest Cassette bag of all is the Bottega green shade – the version snapped up by Hailey Bieber and Victoria Beckham.
Lee’s successor Matthieu Blazy made a promising debut for autumn/winter 2022 that included a fresh selection of bag shapes for the fashion pack to swoon over – if they weren’t distracted by Jacob Elordi, who was sucking a lollipop on the front row. The Euphoria heartthrob arrived with a chocolate-brown Cassette slung over his shoulder – where better to store those sweet treats? – wearing utilitarian separates and a white T-shirt. Bottega obsessive Tracee Ellis Ross, meanwhile, attended with a bright blue Cassette bag in tow. Rapper 070 Shake and Ella Emhoff were also spotted at the shows, clutching Cassette bags in black (Shake) and light blue (Emhoff). It’s safe to say this style has universal appeal.