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I was going to try and figure out how to link this back to handbags in some sort of tenuous, cursory way so that it made sense that I was writing it, but then I realized that I’ve been writing about Real Housewives for well over a year with absolutely no logical link between those posts and the normal subject matter of this blog and decided to dispense with that pretense entirely. And no one’s really thinking about bags today anyway, right? It’s New Year’s Eve. You should all be thinking about champagne and glitter and how crappy 2010 turned out to be. But mostly champagne and glitter!

Because this is a special sort of holiday that requires its own special wardrobe, booze and events, let’s take a look at the things we do and ways we behave on New Year’s Eve that really aren’t acceptable for adults on any other day of the year. Except for Halloween, of course, but that’s a whole different post that I should have written two months ago. (more…)

In general, I think that phrase “too much is never enough” is useful when trying to explain certain sectors of fashion, particularly to those who aren’t interested in the industry or in understanding the genius of fabulous fashion eccentrics like Anna Dello Russo or Daphne Guinness. Rococo is always alive and well somewhere within the style world, even during harsh economic times, and its exuberant resilience is to the industry’s credit.

Sometimes rococo runs headlong into a wall, though, as with the Marc Jacobs Large Sequined Stam. I like the Stam bags (I even have one from way back in the second season that they were around), I like sequins, I like the blush-nude color that we have going on here. But unfortunately, the end result is less than the sum of its parts. (more…)

PurseBlog Awards

Can you believe 2010 is coming to a close? We certainly can not. Either way, with the end of 2010 we decided to start the first annual PurseBlog Readers’ Choice Awards. There are two categories, premier designer and contemporary designer. We picked the top 16 designers for each category that we believe have made the largest impact in the handbag world this year. The final choice, however, is up to all of you.

We want you to vote for the brands you believe have made the most impact in 2010, through their innovation and designs. You can vote once a day in each category. Voting ends January 7th and we will announce the top three in each category on January 10th.

VOTE HERE in the 2010 PurseBlog Readers’ Choice Awards

Exotic leather are usually something to behold. Because they make a bag so expensive, most consumers want their snake, lizard or croc front and center where they can see it, and in order to justify the inflated prices, designers are usually more than happy to oblige. When even a bit of an exotic trim can raise a bag’s price by hundreds of dollars, they better be.

Which is why I can’t really understand what happened with the Fendi Mini Snakeskin Beaded Peekaboo. According to the bag’s description, the exterior body is made entirely of snakeskin…and then beaded over the top with beads of the same color. Only a little or the exotic peeks out around the trim, and the texture on the interior is embossed. Say what? (more…)

I’m kind of stuck on bright colors lately, which is something of an anomaly for a person who is normally so convinced of black’s multitudinous charms. I even had some bright purple put in my hair yesterday, much to the chagrin of the stylist who was charged with stripping the black dye that was there before. (It’s good that I don’t have a “real” job, because if I did, my hair would be an issue.)

Part of this fascination is surely because of the much-anticipated brights trend for spring, but part of it is also the result of something of a self-fulfilling prophecy; when brights are important, designers pull out all the stops and do the most gorgeous, saturated colors that they can do, which makes the whole concept more appealing. Which, of course, brings us to the Rebecca Minkoff Everyday Tote. (more…)

It’s exceedingly rare that I see a bag from Alexander Wang that I don’t like or appreciate in any way, and it looks as though Wang’s Spring 2011 bags will continue that trend in full force. His dark, sometimes-industrialist version of downtown cool certainly qualifies as “taste specific” and tends to skew young and urban, but for those of us who fit into his niche, Wang’s relatively well-priced bags are among the most anticipated of any new season.

The standouts of this collection are the belt-covered carryalls, which will likely elicit gasps of excitement from some and groans from others, and the large, metal-cornered satchels with rose gold hardware that will surely dot young, fashionable arms near you in just a few months’ time, but I’m more interested in the smaller bags. Specifically, the corner-capped wristlets, which look to be the perfect size for the phone-keys-cards combo that we all need to be able to grab quickly to run out of the house. I’m already plotting which one will be mine. The bags will make their retail debut in February, and we have full pictures after the jump. (more…)

To all of my fellow NYC peeps, I am sorry you are literally stuck in feet of snow. I hear a bit of it has kind of melted though. I started to feel guilty when I was complaining of the mid-50-degree and sunny weather we are having in South Florida, while you all are trapped indoors. And then I saw resort bags are on their way out and I started to suffer from seasonal-confusion. But get ready for resort bags, whether you are stuck in your house from the blizzard or not. With resort bags come resort materials, like linen.

Miu Miu is one of the first brands to release a linen bag for the upcoming resort time, and I must admit upon first glance I found the Miu Miu Fringed Linen Tote to be sort of juvenile. I expect the heart tag dangling from a gold chain from a brand like Juicy Couture, but not Miu Miu. (more…)

Spring 2011 bag collections have already started to emerge for preorder on all of the major luxury retail websites, but some brands are quicker about having their items posted than others. I have yet to find any Alexander McQueen Spring 2011 handbags up for grabs, but I was able to find a few press pictures of the collection for our mutual enjoyment.

McQueen’s new creative director, Sarah Burton, only showed one bag during the line’s runway presentation, so finally getting to see these promo shots is enlightening indeed. Alongside the requisite fantastical skull clutches, the brand is also offering several pieces that look downright functional under their leather foliage. If these pieces are an indication of what is to come from the brand’s handbags, then Alexander McQueen certainly remains in capable hands. As if spring’s runway show even left any doubt. (more…)

As far as handbags go, “Chanel alternatives” probably deserve their own category on most large retailers. The French brand’s iconic quilted leather and chain handles have graced designs in one form or another from almost every brand that I can think of, and contemporary brands in particular enjoy taking liberties with the traditional style.

The Tory Burch Classic Washed Leather Mini Bag is one of the best variations that I’ve seen lately. The combination of dark hardware and a minibag shape give this purse a modern edge, which is perfect for Burch’s very fair price point. (more…)

When the New Yorker takes on handbags, the storied publication is sure to produce some interesting bits of wisdom from around the fashion world. The magazine’s profile of Bottega Veneta’s Thomas Maier is only available subscribers (both online and old skool), but a few choice words on the designer’s success at the once nearly-dead Italian brand have leaked out to us plebes, and they’re mostly about the role of the handbag in Maier’s oeuvre.

What I found most interesting, though, was Tom Ford’s declaration concerning the inherent it-ness of the anti-it bag trend. We’ve talked about the sea change in bag trends in these parts before, but It Bag fatigue has created It Bags of its own, whose it-ness isn’t negated by the fact that they aren’t logo-covered or overwrought. Maier’s handmade Bottega Veneta Cabat totes are credited by the magazine with pulling the anti-trend into mainstream favor, and they certainly had a hand in it, but I’m of the personal belief that Phoebe Philo’s sleek, minimal bags for Celine are what broke the trend to its current, wide audience. And that entire thought just proves that Ford is right, as he so often is – people who love It Bags and those who hate them have far more in common than either group would probably like to admit. Where do you sit on this debate, which is clearly the most important issue of our times? I mean, it’s getting coverage in the New Yorker, y’all.

Spring 2011 is all about orange, and if you don’t like orange, well…that sucks for you, I guess. But keep an open mind! Pinkish, coral-y collars like that of the Marc by Marc Jacobs Natasha Crossbody will pull you in with their considerable charms in no time, if only you’ll give them the opportunity. (more…)

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