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17 Things You Probably Never Knew about Louis Vuitton

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If you survived the logomania of the early 2000s, you know: there's no monogram easier to recognize than Louis Vuitton.

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The brand's signature LV has been spotted on bags carried by everyone from Paris Hilton to Angelina Jolie. But there's so much more to the luxury label than its place on the arm of Hollywood's hottest A-listers. In fact, this fashion powerhouse has had a long and fascinating history that has managed to make it a cultural phenomenon time and time again. So read on for a little bit of history and some crazy-cool facts about the luxe brand behind some of your favorite bags.

1. The Start
 

 

Louis Vuitton Malletier began his career as a trunk maker at age 16.

 

2. Destined For Greatness
 

 
 Image Source: Getty / Vanni Bassetti

The house of Louis Vuitton was founded in 1854.

 

3. Trunk Club
 

 
 Image Source: Getty / GABRIEL BOUYS

Louis's son George Vuitton created a new type of lock, the tumbler lock.

 

4. A Great Escape
 

 
 Image Source: Getty / Kirstin Sinclair

The father and son were so sure of their lock that they challenged Harry Houdini to a public escape. Sadly, Houdini didn't agree.

 

5. A True Original
 

 
 Image Source: Getty / Kirstin Sinclair

The brand's signature monogram canvas debuted in 1896 as a way to fight counterfeits.

 

6. Tote-tastic
 

 
 Image Source: Getty / PIERRE VERDY

In 1914, the largest luggage store in the world was opened by the brand on Champs-Élysées in Paris.

 

7. Crafted With Care
 

 

Items are still made by hand in France.

 

8. All For the Show
 

 

The famous monogram inspired artist Salvador Dalí to create the "Dalígram."

 

9. Modern Art
 

 

More recently, the brand has teamed up with artists like Takashi Murakami and Stephen Sprouse.

 

10. Carrie's Choice
 
 
Image Source: Getty / James Devaney

Sex and the City helped instigate a craze for the designer and its knockoffs.

 

11. Star Power
 

 

Celebrities including Angelina JolieMadonna, and David Bowie have posed for the brand, but the strangest campaign star may be Mikhail Gorbachev, the final president of the USSR.

 

12. What's in a Name? 
 

 

The label is part of LVMH, a group comprising 70 retail houses including Christian DiorDonna Karan, and Givenchy.

 

13. Cheers to That
 

  
Image Source: Getty / Vanni Bassetti

The M and H in LVMH stand for Moët and Hennessy, two popular brands of alcohol.

 

14. Power Player
 

 

According to Forbes, Louis Vuitton is considered the world's 14th most valuable brand.

 

15. Louis Louis Louis
 

 
Image Source: Getty / Sean Gardner

As of 2013, the brand had been mentioned 19 times in songs by Kanye West.

 

16. Behind the Design
 

 

Marc Jacobs was the brand's artistic director for 16 years, from 1997 to 2013.

 

17. A New Beginning
 

 
 

The head designer for Louis Vuitton is currently Nicolas Ghesquière, who took the helm in 2013.

 
Source: Pop Sugar