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Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

American, 1921-2018

When it comes to handbags, no designer can compete with Judith Leiber’s (1921–2018) ability to create magic using opulent crystals and wildly imaginative and playful shapes. The Hungarian-born designer made minaudières (small, decorative handbags, often without handles or a strap) in the form of crystal-covered swans, cupcakes, lipstick, wads of cash, teddy bears and other delightful objects. These dazzling objets d’art have been regularly seen in the hands of First Ladies, movie stars on the red carpet and even in the prestigious collections of institutions like the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Like many pathbreaking inventions in the history of design, Leiber’s minaudières were the result of a happy accident. In 1967, she began working on her first metal handbag. The piece in question was named the Chatelaine, and the design was a graceful drop-shaped purse in gold-tinted metal. But when the samples came in, Leiber saw that the bottom of the bag looked greenish and discolored as a result of the plating process. She had the ingenious idea of applying crystal rhinestones to the base to cover up the flaws. The dazzling bag was a huge success and would become her trademark.

Born Judith Peto in Budapest, Leiber overcame many hardships before her breakthrough. At the start of World War II, she was working at the Pessl handbag company in Budapest where she quickly climbed the ranks to become a master craftswoman. When the war escalated, she and her Jewish family were forced by the Nazis to live in a cellar of a ghetto, and several of her relatives were killed in concentration camps. “I designed handbags in my head to get through the misery,” she said. After the liberation of Budapest, she married Gerson “Gus” Leiber, an American GI, and moved to New York. In 1948, she began working for the fashion house Nettie Rosenstein. One of her first major pieces was the handbag embroidered with glittering rhinestones and pearls carried by Mamie Eisenhower at the 1953 inaugural ball. In 1963, she finally set up her own company.

Leiber’s whimsical designs embellished with Swarovski crystals and semiprecious stones defied traditional notions of luxury handbags. She also created striking clutches and bags with leather and fine textiles from around the world. In her 65-year career, she designed over 3,500 bags, which have been worn by First Ladies including Nancy Reagan and Laura Bush, pop icons like Beyoncé and Jennifer Lopez and celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Kris Jenner (who collects Leiber’s handbags). In 2005, the Leiber Collection Museum opened in East Hampton, New York, as a permanent space to showcase her work. The minaudières remain coveted objects celebrated worldwide for their eclectic beauty and glamorous charm.

The value of a good handbag cannot be overstated — find a collection of vintage Judith Leiber handbags and other fashion accessories today on 1stDibs.

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Designer: Judith Leiber
Judith Leiber Textured Coco-Brown Silk Evening Bag with Gold hradware
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Judith Leiber wonderfully whimsical yet elegant textured coco-brown silk evening shoulder bag is accented with vermeil-finished gold hardware. The fully lined interior is pai...
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1980s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Purple Snakeskin Frame Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Vintage Purple Judith Leiber Snakeskin Frame Clutch. This clutch features a snakeskin body, gold-tone hardware, purple satin interior, an optional shoulder strap, an...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Early Judith Leiber Pave Owl Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Early and unusual Judith Leiber Pave Shoulder Bag in silver kid leather with applied 3-D bombe, pave owl heads. Unusual design with charming figural accents. 1960's USA. 7" x 7" x 2...
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1960s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Ivory Lizard Compartment Purse with Gold Chain Handles, 1980s
By Judith Leiber
Located in Tucson, AZ
"And though she be but little, she is fierce," said Shakespeare. With a whopping seven interior compartments AND a matching coin purse in an 8" package, this handbag might have been ...
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1980s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

1980s Judith Leiber Black Lizard Convertible Clutch Handbag w/ Obsidian Cameo
By Judith Leiber
Located in San Francisco, CA
1980s Judith Leiber oval black lizard skin convertible clutch handbag with obsidian cameo clasp. Optional chain handle disappears into bag for clutch. Size Large.
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1980s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Natural Grey Python Snakeskin Shoulder Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Philadelphia, PA
GORGEOUS Judith Leiber Natural Grey Python Snakeskin Shoulder Bag in excellent condition. Natural grey python snakeskin exterior trimmed with gunmetal hardware, maroon stones and pe...
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21st Century and Contemporary Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Blue & Grey Snakeskin Frame Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Vintage Blue & Grey Judith Leiber Snakeskin Frame Clutch. This clutch features a snakeskin body, gold-tone hardware, an optional shoulder strap, and a top clasp clos...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Asian Motif Silk Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in Scottsdale, AZ
Take on the evening with this stunning Judith Leiber clutch! Circa 1970s, this clutch features a beautiful Asian motif finished with glittering multi-colored rhinestones, two exterio...
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1970s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Gold Frame Tiger Eye Lizard Clutch Shoulder Bag 1980s
By Judith Leiber
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
Judith Leiber gold frame, tiger eye stone clasp pale taupe lizard clutch or shoulder bag from the 1980s. Hidden gold flat chain strap, the bag is lined in gold faille. Interior zippe...
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1980s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Vintage JUDITH LEIBER Silver Rhinestones Clutch Handbag
By Judith Leiber
Located in San Francisco, CA
Vintage JUDITH LEIBER clutch comes in a silver rhinestones, chain link strap, and a floral clasp closure. Includes mini coin bag, mirror, and comb. Comes with box. Very Good Pre-Own...
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19th Century Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Vintage Silk Crystals Flap 2-Way Clutch Shoulder Tassel Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Fort Lauderdale, FL
The ultimate in handbag making luxury craftsmanship. The Iconic House of Judith Leiber always provides us with timeless and classic pieces. This beautiful bag takes timeless creation...
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1990s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Floral Patchwork Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Scottsdale, AZ
Elevate your look with this amazing Leiber! Circa 1970s, this bag features a gorgeous floral patchwork motif with colorful rhinestone embellishing with a black rhinestoned top closur...
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1970s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Green and Blue Reptile Leather Clutch Bag, 1986
By Judith Leiber
Located in Boca Raton, FL
Creativity is certainly a defining feature of Judith Leiber bags. From rhinestone encrusted sculptural pieces, to hand-decorated leathers in unconventional color combinations, Judith...
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1980s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Vintage JUDITH LEIBER Gold Multi-Color Butterfly Rhinestones Handbag
By Judith Leiber
Located in San Francisco, CA
Vintage JUDITH LEIBER bag comes in multi-color rhinestones with a gold leather lining featuring a butterfly design, gold tone chain link strap, and a clasp closure. Very Good Pre-O...
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21st Century and Contemporary Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber White Lizard Frame Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Vintage White Judith Leiber Lizard Frame Clutch. This clutch features a lizard skin body, gold-tone hardware, an optional shoulder strap, and a top bow clasp closure...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Embellished Patchwork Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Scottsdale, AZ
Elevate your look with this amazing Leiber! Circa 1970s, this bag features a gorgeous patchwork motif with colorful rhinestone embellishing, a removable black rope shoulder strap, an...
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1970s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Black Swarovski Crystal Minaudiere Evening Bag
By Judith Lieber, Judith Leiber
Located in Scottsdale, AZ
Elegance and glamor right this way! This is a highly designed handbag that will catch people's attention from across the room. This is a BEAUTIFUL Judith Leiber Black Swarovski Cryst...
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1990s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

JUDITH LEIBER Leather Shoulder Bag Hobo Beige Gold-Tone HW Crystal Top Zipper
By Judith Leiber
Located in Hollywood, FL
GUARANTEED AUTHENTIC JUDITH LEIBER BEIGE PLEATED LEATHER SHOULDER BAG Authenticated by Authenticatefirst Design: - Supple beige pleated leather. - Double chain link and leather s...
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2010s Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Green and Blue Reptile Leather Clutch Bag, 1986
By Judith Leiber
Located in Boca Raton, FL
Creativity is certainly a defining feature of Judith Leiber bags. From rhinestone encrusted sculptural pieces, to hand-decorated leathers in unconventional color combinations, Judith...
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1980s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Leiber Lizard Black Lizard Frame Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Vintage Black Judith Leiber Lizard Frame Clutch. This clutch features a lizard skin body, silver-tone hardware, an optional rope shoulder strap, and a top crystal-em...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Rhinestoned Chevron Evening Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Scottsdale, AZ
Take on the evening with this stunning Judith Leiber evening bag! Circa 1970s, this bag features a beautiful metallic gold, orange, white and black chevron motif finished with glitte...
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1970s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Brown Leather Compartment Bag with Coin Purse, 1980s
By Judith Leiber
Located in Tucson, AZ
Like Bonnie Cashin’s revolutionary “Cashin Carry” bags of the 1960s, this ingenious purse seems to defy physics with the amount of room it offers. Essentially a series of expandable ...
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1980s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Purple Embroidered Metallic Leather Mini Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Vintage Purple Judith Leiber Embroidered Metallic Leather Mini Bag. This bag features an embroidered metallic leather body, silver-tone hardware, bead embellishments...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber White Karung Convertible Clutch With Semi Precious Jewels
By Judith Leiber
Located in Wallkill, NY
Wonderful Judith Leiber clutch! Totally surrounded by semi-precious stones. Converts from a clutch to a shoulder bag. Gently, gently used. Mirror in bag. Measures 7.25 in x 5 in. x 2...
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1980s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber White Leather Shoulder Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: White & Red Trim Judith Leiber Leather Shoulder Bag. This bag features a leather body, lizard skin trim, gold-tone hardware, a grosgrain interior, a front buckle acc...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Leiber Lizard Tan Lizard Frame Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Tan Judith Leiber Lizard Frame Clutch. This clutch features a lizard skin body, gold-tone hardware, an optional shoulder strap, grosgrain interior, cabochon embellis...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Dark Brown Lizard Shoulder Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
Product Details: Vintage Dark Brown Judith Leiber Lizard Shoulder Bag. This shoulder bag features a lizard skin body, gold-tone hardware, grosgrain interior, chain-link shoulder stra...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Multicolored Snakskin Beach Ball Shoulder Bag, 1980s
By Judith Leiber
Located in Boca Raton, FL
Judith Leiber is internationally acclaimed for her glammed-up, kitschy accessories. Never dull, Leiber’s creations employ deep color combinations and sculpture forms that often refle...
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1980s Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Vintage Black Alligator Shoulder Bag Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in Philadelphia, PA
STUNNING Judith Leiber Vintage Black Alligator Shoulder Bag Clutch in excellent condition. Black alligator leather exterior trimmed with a front black and gold sliding latch closure ...
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1980s Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Glass Stone Blue Suede Clutch - Shoulder Bag c 1980s
By Judith Leiber
Located in University City, MO
Judith Leiber Glass elegant stone blue suede clutch - shoulder bag c 1980s The stylish handbag is covered with pale muted blue suede covering designed with sinuous floral motfis thro...
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1980s Unknown Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Red Snake Skin Clutch Handbag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Wallkill, NY
Lovely petite red 1980's snakeskin clutch shoulder bag by JUDITH LEIBER! Wonderful supple skins with shiny gold-tone frame and snakeskin flip-top clasp. Shoulder chain strap folds in...
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1980s Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

JUDITH LEIBER Nude to Brown Ombre Lizard Skin Purse Gold Straps
By Judith Leiber
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This Judith Leiber purse is composed of a nude to brown ombre lizard skin. Features an interior gold frame with two side pockets. There is an interior pocket and two slide pockets. C...
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20th Century Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Black Suede Rhinestone Evening Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in Palm Beach, FL
Judith Leiber Black Suede Rhinestone Evening Bag. This beautiful piece mixes new with vintage trends. It is in fair vintage condition with some wear to the suede and rhinestones on t...
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1990s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

1980s Judith Leiber Luxe Patchwork Clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in Toronto, Ontario
Known for her exquisite use of exotic skins, this 1980s patchwork multi-skin brown and black geometric over-sized clutch with punch clasp by Leiber is a must have. The clutch has a f...
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1980s American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Lizard Leather Evening Bag Handbag Clutch - Semi - Precious Stones
By Judith Leiber
Located in Wallkill, NY
Judith Leiber Evening Bag. Finely crafted from beige genuine lizard and tonal top stitching. Features multiple semi-precious stones including onyx, amethyst, jade, garnet, lapis, ros...
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1980s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Crystal Encrusted Monogram evening clutch
By Judith Leiber
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
Judith Leiber crystal encrusted monogram evening clutch or shoulder bag. This beautiful bag in monogrammed LMJ, in crystal rhinestones set against black rhinestones. The bag frame is...
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21st Century and Contemporary American Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Cream Off White Snakeskin Hobo with Multi Metal Two Tone Chain
By Judith Leiber
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This is a gorgeous Judith Leiber purse. The handbag is composed of a striking off white snakeskin and features a two tone chain. There is a one interior zipper compartment and a snap...
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1980s Unknown Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber Detailed Top-Stitched Off-White Calfskin "Duckie" Hardware Bag
By Judith Leiber
Located in New York, NY
A rare, early Judith Leiber for Saks Fifth Avenue off-white calfskin round shoulder bag is highlighted with detailed stop-stitching throughout the bag, and accented with a gilded gol...
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1970s Italian Judith Leiber Shoulder Bags

Judith Leiber shoulder bags for sale on 1stDibs

1stDibs offers an extraordinary range of authentic Judith Leiber shoulder bags. If you’re browsing our collection of unique vintage and designer fashion to elevate your daily look or to introduce new colors to the dazzling formal wear in your wardrobe, this designer’s body of work includes elements of green, red, orange and other tones. Most of the items here were designed during the 20th Century, but you can find examples that were created as recently as the 21st Century and Contemporary. Customers interested in this designer might also find the work of Carlos Falchi, Bvlgari and Moschino appealing. Find designer, vintage and haute couture Judith Leiber shoulder bags from top boutiques around the world on 1stDibs. On 1stDibs, the price for these items starts at $240 and tops out at $4,200, while the average work can sell for $923. Judith Leiber shoulder bags prices can vary depending upon time period and other attributes.

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