I have to say, when it comes to handbags, the PurseBlog team tends to influence one another pretty frequently. Well, it’s happened again. A few days ago, Amanda covered Kelly Osbourne carrying a neon Chanel Flap over on BagThatStyle. It goes without saying that Chanel bags are classic, but there was something about the neon version of this bag that I really liked. That something happens to be the color. I don’t typically gravitate towards neon colors, but this hue, for some reason, really speaks to me.

Since laying my eyes on that bag, I’ve found myself taking note when others with a similar color pop up. That is exactly what happened when I came across this Anya Hindmarch Valorie Metallic Leather Clutch. (more…)

Back when I first started writing for PurseBlog (in the Dark Ages, basically), I used to see beautiful, incredibly intricate clutches, often made from shell or filigree, pop up here and there from a small brand called Celestina. Designed by Filipino former model Maristela Ocampo, the evening bags all had a clearly oceanic influence and wonderful details. It’s been a couple years since I’ve encountered one of the brand’s handbag’s online even though I’ve often wondered if Ocampo was still designing, so you can imagine how pleased I was to find Celestina Resort 2013 available for pre-order through Moda Operandi yesterday morning.

The sale, which runs until September 3, includes some of Celestina’s exotics, but the real stars of the show are the shell clutches. Red abalone, black lip, rainbow paua, mother of pearl – the clutches’ frames and closures are solely punctuation to the beautiful natural materials. Just when I thought I was ready for cooler weather to finally come, I’m suddenly craving one last late-summer trip to the beach. In the meantime, check out the clutches after the jump and shop the sale via Moda Operandi. (more…)

We say this here a lot, but that’s because it’s true: Clutches and evening bags are a fantastic venue for intense, intricate, sometimes crazy embellishment. Their small size means that they can be dunked in glitter, covered in sequins, studded with rhinestones and any number of other embellishments without overwhelming the rest of an ensemble. That’s part of why I’m such a big fan of Kotur – the brand takes full advantage of the opportunity to experiment, and that’s never been more apparent than with Kotur Resort 2013, currently available for pre-order via Moda Operandi through August 29.

The clutches range from sequin-flowered to multicolor-feathered to lava lamp-enclosed (make sure you don’t take that one or the glitter snow globe version on a plane in your carry-on; that would be a handbag tragedy), and although there are some solid options in materials like snakeskin and translucent acrylic, the occasional bits of weirdness are what really make this collection shine. As is customary for resort, the colors are perfect for early spring – saturated, rich pastels that feel too vibrant to truthfully be called that. Check it out after the jump or shop via Moda Operandi. (more…)

Full disclosure folks, this bag is not cheap, like, at all. I’ll get into the specifics on the price later, but now that I’ve been up front, I feel as though I can talk about this beautiful bag without the guilt. After getting over the immense sticker shock that the price tag gave me, I actually found myself in awe over the Valextra Alligator Isis Clutch. (more…)

“Cult” is a word that can be easily abused; just because a brand has a small, relatively enthusiastic group of fans does not a cult favorite make. That fans have to be so dedicated, so ardent in their love for a designer’s work that they create a high-entry point that’s almost prohibitive for newcomers. Those are the kind of fans that Olympia Le-Tan‘s handmade book clutches have attracted. If you’d like to join their ranks, good luck getting your hands on your favorite title. You’re going to need it. (more…)

Ladies (and gentleman too, but this only applies to the most fabulous among your ranks), I’m here to talk to you today about an issue that’s plaguing the closets of all too many women: clutch neglect. I’m not talking about formal evening bags; I think that a lot of us have a sparkly little something-or-other ferreted away, just in case. I’m talking about an actual clutch, one that can be carried to a dinner with friends or weekend afternoon cocktails with your girls (does anyone actually do that?) or, you know, wherever you feel like it, so long as you don’t have a baby in tow and you don’t have to haul groceries in the course of the outing.

A good clutch is a bag that will hold your keys, a small wallet, your phone and your sunglasses without bulging awkwardly, and carrying something handheld instead of a shoulder bag not only makes you look elegant and a bit carefree, but I find that it also makes me feel instantly more stylish. There’s something stately, almost regal, about telling the world that your average evening plans are going to go so well that you don’t need to worry about a shoulder strap. Just don’t lose your purse! We know how you get when you drink tequila.

Ahem. Check out our picks to fill out your bag wardrobe after the jump. (more…)

It’s an interesting time to be in the fashion industry. Spheres of influence are shifting, new markets are opening up, it’s a whole new world out there for brands with the foresight to see opportunities emerging. If you’re a street style fan, you’ve probably noticed a growing number of Russian women who are gaining an increasingly large portion of the spotlight, and that’s no coincidence – newly wealthy Russians, stretching their legs after decades of political and economic isolation, are buying up everything from the priciest of Manhattan real estate to entire Chanel couture collections. The New York Times even wrote a trend piece about it last week.

As a result, you shouldn’t be surprised if you see Russian influences start to creep into collections, just like how the expansion of the Chinese market has brought with it more Asian flare to global fashion. If you need proof, look no further than the Charlotte Olympia Baboushka Leather Clutch and Charlotte Olympia Pandora Matryoshka Clutch. (more…)

When I was looking for bags to feature in one of last week’s wedding guides, I came across the stunning Kotur Barnes Ombre Woven Clutch. I was immediately smitten – the way that the ultra bright colors mingle in the middle is so unique and so memorable that I couldn’t get the bag out of my head. It seems as though I wasn’t the only one who had that reaction; since that post went up, I’ve had a few friends mention the Kotur clutch in particular as a standout.

$450 isn’t an outrageous price in the least when you compare it to some of the bags that we write about, but we try to be sensitive to the fact that it’s still a lot to pay for a bag that you might only use a few times per season. Naturally, that’s where this edition of Look for Less and the Serpui Marie Marrakech Minaudiere come in. (more…)

Clutches are such a conundrum. Not only are they the smallest, least often-used bags of all the major categories, but they’re some of the most expensive purses on the market because of the amount of embellishment and detail that goes into some of them. It’s hard to believe that what is essentially a frame-structured silk pouch can sometimes cost as much as an all-leather everyday bag from the same brand, but that’s exactly the case with the Valentino Silk Georgette Rosette Clutch, which rings up at $2495. If you’re keeping score, that’s only $100 less than the white Valentino Rockstud Tote that I’m so obsessed with.

Of course, that just means that we had to go out and find a less-expensive alternative for this pretty little clutch, and that’s exactly what we did. Check out our alternative (and its much lower price) after the jump. (more…)

Over the past few years, clutches molded out of clear lucite or acrylic have enjoyed wide popularity, at least on runways. It’s a trend that nearly every brand has touched on at one point or another, but because not everyone jumped on the bandwagon at once, a clear evening bag still feels fresh and modern. Don’t let that fool you, though; see-through clutches have been around for decades and are often the best thing that a vintage store’s handbag selection has to offer.

If you want something with a more modernist edge (or if vintage shop-trawling simply isn’t your favorite hobby), we’ve done a little bit of legwork for you. In this edition of Save, Spend, Splurge, we highlight three clear plastic handbags at three very, very different price points. Check ‘em out after the jump and tell us whether or not this is a trend that you’d ever buy into in the comments. (more…)

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