Louis Vuitton uses several acronyms and a number system to size many of their bags. This guide will explain what BB, PM, MM, and GM stands for.
What BB stands for is actually a mystery online and offline, and we've heard many different conjectures. However, BB bags are of a certain size and have a detachable shoulder strap, so a possible acronym is "bebe bandouliere" which means "baby shoulder."
Even though BB bags are smaller than their counterpart PM, MM, and GM bags, it is usually a small to medium-sized bag. Most BB bags are slightly larger than a 10 inch classic Chanel double flap bag.
For example, the Alma BB is approximately 9 x 7.5 x 4.3 inches and can easily hold a small-medium wallet, sunglasses, keys, phone, tissues, and several pieces of makeup.
The next size up from BB is PM, which stands for "petite model." It means "small model" in French. However, many PM bags can be medium to large-sized.
Of all of the sizes, the PM size is usually my favorite for handbags (bags with handles instead of a shoulder strap(s)). Here's me wearing an Alma PM bag. It comes off very lady-like for most heights!
For instance, the Alma PM measures 12.6 x 9.4 x 6 inches and is considerably larger than an Alma BB bag.
An Alma PM bag can easily hold a medium to large wallet, sunglasses, phone, keys, tissues, full-size lotion, water bottle, snacks, small notebook and on-the-go roll-up flats! Not all PM bags are around this size. For instance, PM bags with long shoulder straps will be significantly smaller.
Next size up from PM is MM. MM stands for medium model. The MM and PM are the most popular sizes for Louis Vuitton handbags (bags with handles and not shoulder strap(s)), and the MM seems to be the most popular size for most shoulder tote bags like the Neverfull.
Some MM bags like the Lockit MM and Totally MM can even support small laptops.
To continue our example with the Alma bag, the Alma MM is 14.2 x 11 x 6.7 inches and is bigger than an Alma PM or Alma BB. An Alma MM bag will hold about the same amount of stuff as a Celine mini bag. It can comfortably hold a large wallet, sunglasses, phone, keys, tissues, full-size lotion, water bottle, snacks, small notebook, flats, kindle, and a DSLR camera!
Finally, the largest size of them all is the GM. Some GM bags can be considered as an extra-large bag. And, some GM bags can even be used as light travel bags due to their capacity to hold.
Louis Vuitton crossbody and satchel bags in the GM size are very versatile and functional, because GM crossbody and satchel bags are usually small even in the GM size. For instance, a beautiful Louis Vuitton Louise GM satchel bag measures only 9 x 6 x 2 inches, and the smaller Louise PM measures a mere 8 x 5.5 x 1.6 inches.
Finally, the biggest Alma, the Alma GM handbag measures 15 x 11 x 7 inches and is larger than the BB, PM, and MM Alma. The dimensions may sound only marginally larger than the MM Alma, but it looks considerably larger in person. An Alma GM bag can hold a large wallet, sunglasses, phone, keys, tissues, full-size lotion, water bottle, snacks, ipad, small laptop, shoes, camera and a change of clothing! When it is completely filled inside, it can be quite heavy.
Okay... so NM doesn't have anything to do with size, but it's an acronym that's seen a lot with Louis Vuitton. NM simply means "nouvelle modele" or "new model" in English. Vintage or older versions of these bags can be slightly different in design.
Pictures really help demonstrate sizing! If you're deciding on a Neverfull or Alma, check out these side-by-side size comparisons.
I hope that you found this Louis Vuitton size guide helpful in its pictures and descriptions. Thanks so much for stopping by!