Over the last several season, I’ve come to anticipate Fendi’s fashion shows because of the uptick in the quality of the brand’s accessories. Not only were its Spring 2011 bags totally on-trend and directional, but they seem just as brilliant now that they’ve arrived in stores as they did on the runway six months ago. I’m not as in love with Fendi Fall 2011 handbags as I was with those pieces, but there are still several winners to be found in the collection.

And this Wednesday I am wanting to add the Fendi Silvana Flap Top Bag to my spring wardrobe.

But I am more interested in what Fendi themselves release. What kind of rendition will the brand itself come up with? Right now I am eying the striped Fendi Snakeskin Peek-A-Boo Tote.

I’ve already waxed rhapsodic about my love for Fendi’s Spring 2011 bags several times, and now it’s time for the hard truth of the collection: These bags cost a lot. But, surprisingly, not as much as I was expecting from all the whispers that it would require the sale of a kidney in order to buy one.

The Fendi Croco and Calfskin Top Handle you see at left comes in above eight grand because of the exotic flap, and similar bags with regular leather come in above two grand, at least according to Luisa Via Roma’s European prices, which often vary a bit (sometimes up, sometimes down) from what American retailers charge when they receive these bags.

I’ve already pontificated on just how much I love Fendi’s Spring 2011 handbags, but now that promo photos are out and we can all get a clearer, closer look at the bags than runway shots afford us, I feel the need to reiterate: This collection is great, and from a purely accessories standpoint, it’s one of the very best of the season.

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.

When we wrote about Fendi’s colorblocked clutch and what it portends for spring’s trends last week, your reaction was predictably split. A strong point of view will always divide people, even if all the people responding have great taste (and, duh, of course you do). For those of you who thought that Fendi veered into stank territory with that clutch, we present you with the Fendi Forever Mamma Anaconda Shoulder Bag.

You may or may not have liked Fendi’s Spring 2011 handbag collection, but you can’t argue that it was what fashion industry people call “directional.” Instead of merely designing safe, pretty accessories, Fendi’s handbags gave us a new way to think about combining color, structure and texture.

Vogue.com chose this Fendi Multicolor Woven Clutch to illustrate spring’s colorblocking trend in its Accessories Blackbook, but upon close examination, the design is interesting for more than just its use of color.

The Fendi Peekaboo Tote is getting to that point in its design life cycle where people start impatiently tapping their feet, awaiting the next thing from the brand. Spring 2011 holds a few options, but until those come to retail, this pink iteration of the popular Peekaboo might just be enough to hold your attention. I just have one question, though – what is this bag actually made of?

Perhaps I’m merely willing to indulge Fendi’s recent logo-bag silliness because of the beautiful runway collections the brand has given us over the past few seasons, but first I liked Fendi‘s slightly bizarre horse-head tote, and now I find myself enjoying the flowered-but-not-frilly Fendi Roll Bag Tote.

I think the more likely explanation is that these recent bags show a brand that’s not taking itself too seriously, which is always worthy of applause.

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