Over the years I’ve become pretty picky about my bags. They have to be functional, lightweight, well-made, and good-looking. These days I’m more into simple designs and classic bag styles and colors rather than this season’s It Bags. In fact, I’ve learned to wait a few seasons before purchasing a new or popular style to be sure it will have longevity. And quality is key; the simpler the design, the more that shoddy materials or workmanship become apparent.
A few of you took issue with the price of the bag I showed in yesterday’s post. I won’t argue that a few of the bags in my collection are spendy. Bags have always been my “thing” and I think a bag can make (or break) an outfit. And I’ve always been a curator. The bags I love I keep and use for years and years. The ones that didn’t work out have been re-sold to help fund future purchases.
Everyone will have their own threshold for what they are comfortable spending on a bag. For this post, I’ve stayed under $500 for leather bags (and most are substantially less than that). I feel these choices offer good value for the money. Spending more is an option, but not an imperative for good-looking and high quality bags.
To help preserve your bags, always store in a dust bag or pillowcase away from heat (and that includes avoiding the top shelf of your closet). To retain shape of more structured bags, store upright and stuffed with tissue paper.
Here are the styles of bags I find myself using most often. The specific bags I’ve linked to are either styles I’ve examined in person, or are from brands I’m familiar with.
The Convertible Satchel
Really one of the best all-around bag styles, IMO. I was so happy when Longchamp began adding a shoulder strap to both the nylon and leather versions of the classic Le Pliage bag. They don’t get much lighter than these.
The Camera Bag
For day-to-day use, I often find this size bag sufficient. It’s also great for casual evening wear, or days where I know I’ll be on my feet for hours. Above, an outside slip pocket, tassel detail and wider shoulder strap are all features that make this bag worth a second look. I’ve always found Cole Haan bags to be a good value. This style is also available in nude and sky blue leathers.
More Camera Bags
Shoulder Flap Bag
The most versatile styles will have an adjustable strap so they can be worn either on one shoulder or crossbody. I picked up this Sandro bag in Paris last fall and it’s been an excellent addition. It’s lightweight, has good interior organization, nice leather, and it’s currently on sale for less than $200! (Also offered in Black.)
More Flap And Saddle Bags
Are there any styles of bags you find yourself wearing year after year?