While a designer handbag can be a powerful status symbol, the most expansive bag in the world is useless to you if isn’t functional or doesn’t flatter your style. Designer handbags come in many different types and the right bag for you should meet your storage and accessorizing needs. With a wide range of choices, it should be easy to find a designer handbag for everyday use or a fancy night on the town.
Although it doesn’t seem like it, a woman can get away with three handbags: an everyday, full-sized shoulder style bag, a clutch for nights out and a midsize bag for short term use.
What will that new bag be called upon to handle. Car keys and a compact, or the entire contents of your make up drawer? Overstuffing a designer handbag will shorten its lifespan and ruin its good looks.
Avoid presenting a tempting target to thieves by making sure your designer handbag has clasps that close firmly and easily. Clasp should secure the main compartment as well as any exterior pockets.
It’s getting harder to tell counterfeit designer handbags, but one sure way still works: stitching. To identify an original designer handbag, look for tight stitching with no irregularities or loose threads.
Although leather is the most popular choice for designer handbags, don’t forget to consider other materials. Canvas or PVC can make great everyday bags and silk and satin are perfect for evening clutches.
Designer handbags come in a number of different types based on function. Tote or shoppers are the largest, intended for carrying many items. Shoulder bags tend to be mid-sized, while satchels and clutches are small bags.
Leather rules the designer handbag roost. Canvas, denim and nylon can make attractive casual bags, while satin, silk and exotic skins are great for formal handbags.
Designer handbags are available in a rainbow of colors. While black goes with everything, a bag with some color will help “pop” a neutral outfit. Earth-toned leather is always a versatile choice.
Zippers, clasps or snaps are the major choices when it comes to designer handbags. Whatever you choose, look for easy to use, secure closures made from sturdy materials.
Let’s face it: A designer handbag is an investment. Some women save for years before they take the plunge. Given that level of commitment, it only makes sense that you do your homework before buying a designer handbag. The perfect bag is the one that is functional and matches your style. Resist the temptation to go with the latest trend—a classic look will give you years of pleasure.
When it comes to designer handbags, form certainly does follow function. Here are the major types of handbags available:
Tote bags. These larger bags are designed to handle a lot of gear for outings like a day at the beach or a trip to the gym. With a wide mouth and short handles, tote bags are perfect for a day of shopping or an overnight trip.
Shoulder bags. The most common type of handbag, shoulder bags allow you to carry everything you’ll need, while keeping your hands free. Shoulder bags often come with several smaller pockets to help organize your possessions.
Satchels. These small bags provide plenty of room with their wide, flat interiors. Perfect for a casual night out, satchels can be held in your hand, hung by short straps or draped across the crook of your arm.
Evening. Available as a clutch (no straps) or a wristlet (a small strap that fits over your hand) evening bags are the smallest designer handbags. Designed to carry the bare essentials, evening bags tend to also be the most ornate and formal.
Counterfeit products are rampant in the designer handbag market. How do you tell a true original from a fake? Here are some clues:
Patterns and logos. Fake products tend to take shortcuts when matching fabric patterns and logo tags and emblems. This is particularly true when it comes to linings and inner tags.
Stitching. Look for tight stitching that doesn’t skimp on the detailing. Irregular stitching or loose threads should be a red flag.
Availability. Many designer bags are only available from tightly controlled distribution networks. Retailers that claim to sell “factory seconds” and “overstocks” are often selling knock-offs.
Homework. If you’re interested in a particular designer, take the time to study their products. Look for distinctive details that would be hard to reproduce.
While leather is the most popular material for designer handbag construction, don’t be afraid to consider other alternatives. For casual or everyday bags, canvas, denim or suede can all be used to create quality bags. For more formal bags, consider silk, satin or exotic animal hides for a feminine, sophisticated look.
The functional capabilities of a bag are greatly influenced by its construction. Deep bags may carry many items, but make them hard to find. A bag with multiple inner or outer pockets makes it easy to stay organized.
Don’t forget to look at the closure each bag uses as well. Zippers offer a secure closure, but can be tricky to navigate one handed. Clasps and snaps can be easier to open, but aren’t as secure. Whatever type you choose, look for closures that are made of durable materials like brass and nickel.