When it comes to bags, nothing worse than passing up something you love and then regretting it. We’ve all been there – something catches our eye, we hesitate, it’s gone forever and then we obsess about it endlessly. The Bag That Got Away is a common theme over at our PurseForum, where many members keep running lists of the out-of-season bags they’re longing for in their post signatures, hoping that another member will spy them somewhere and tip them off. Everyone knows the term “buyer’s remorse”, but what about the remorse that comes from not buying?

As part of our celebration leading up to our very own National Handbag Day on October 10, the PurseBlog team went to work thinking of all the bags that we wish we had grabbed before they disappeared. Sometimes it’s a bag that didn’t seem as charming when it came out as it does now, all these years later, and other times it’s a bag that we bet would hit the sale section that sold out before it ever got marked down. Also, Spring 2008, in retrospect, was a great season for handbags. Whatever happened, here are the bags that keep us each checking eBay on the regular.

If you’ve found your way here, you’ve probably spent quite a bit of money on designer handbags in your life, and I’d venture a guess that not all of those bags are in your current rotation. It’s a problem I’ve had before – I buy something, I carry it and then it makes its way into retirement in the back of my closet when something else takes its place. Your bag doesn’t have to have that lot in life, though – there’s almost always someone out there who would love to add it to her collection, but finding that person can be tricky. How do you locate your customers? Easy: You consign your bag with Heritage Auctions. (more…)

Sure, it’s fun to buy cute seasonal stuff to get yourself in the mood for a coming change in the weather. Raffia bags in summer, fur bags in winter – those things have their place. When building a covetable wardrobe of designer handbags, fine watches and jewelry, though, the seasonal stuff isn’t always what makes the world go ’round. If you’re serious about building a collection, or even about acquiring your very first piece to start one, you need to start with the classics. Portero is here to help you do that.

If you choose correctly, you can build yourself a wardrobe of bags and accessories that you can wear not only next season, but next year. Color, material, shape, brand – those are all decisions that can greatly affect a bag or watch’s longevity, and when they cost many thousands of dollars, those are not decisions to be taken lightly. (Unless you just have that money to burn. And if you do, come over here and sit next to me.) The best thing you can do for yourself when choosing a bag is to go for regular, flat leather in a mid-tone bright color, but greys and taupes also work quite well year-round; if it’s a watch you want, try to choose a single-tone metal or neutral leather band without too many bells and whistles on the face. Remember, the look we’re going for is “classic” – the antithesis of trendy. If jewelry’s more your speed, stick to the shapes and stones that you’ve been seeing all your life and the long-enduring designs that the major design houses offer – think round-cut diamonds and Cartier Love Bracelets.

Now, where to get all of those things? Easy: Portero. The most covetable classics are often difficult to come by in stores. We all know that good Hermes bags vanish from shelves in an instant, if they ever make it there in the first place, but it’s also surprisingly difficult to waltz into a Chanel boutique and come away with a Classic Flap Bag in exactly the shade you’ve been dreaming of. Not only does Portero have access to 100% guaranteed authentic bags, watches and jewelry from a vast network of collectors and resellers, but if you don’t see what you’re looking for on the site, Portero can work with you to source a piece of your very own. In addition, pre-owned pieces can often be had below retail, which makes the classic accessories an even better deal. Below, check out our favorite classics from the site, or shop the full selection via Portero.

For updates from Portero on new arrivals and the latest in luxury accessories, like the site’s official Facebook page!

Rolex Date Stainless Steel Watch
$3,150 via Portero

A stainless steel Rolex needs to be the first watch in your wardrobe – it’s a durable, elegant, wear-anywhere classic.

Rolex Date Stainless Steel Watch

Louis Vuitton Epi Leather Speedy Bag
$999 via Portero

Why Vuitton discontinued the Epi Speedy is beyond me, but now the only way to get this classic bag in super wear-resistant Epi leather is by finding one pre-owned. In red, it’s a true year-round option.

Louis Vuitton Epi Leather Speedy Bag

Hermes Guilloche Kelly Double Cuff Bracelet
$999 via Portero

If you’re used to wearing metals, try a piece of leather jewelry, especially from Hermes – it’s versatile, casual and has been chic since your mom’s era.

Hermes Guilloche Kelly Double Cuff

Hermes Kelly Bag
$24,500 via Portero

This Kelly is the size of the average Birkin, and with its optional shoulder strap and lush green color, it will look just as home next to a black topcoat is a floral summer dress.

Hermes Kelly Bag

Louis Vuitton Keepall Bag
Prices Vary via Portero

Everyone has to travel at one time or another, and Louis Vuitton’s monogram canvas is exactly the kind of wear-resistant, utterly seasonless material with which to do it. Lucky for you, there are plenty of these traditional bags to choose from.

Louis Vuitton Keepall Bag

Salvatore Ferragamo W Top Handle Bag
$1,200 via Portero

Ferragamo specializes in neutral leather classics, and this charcoal leather bag is dark enough for cold weather but just light enough to act as a stand-in for black when it’s warm.

Salvatore Ferragamo W Top Handle Bag

Brilliant Cut Diamond Stud Earrings
$1,650 via Portero

At just under a carat, these are the perfect diamond studs to wear day, night, whenever.

Brilliant Cut Diamond Stud Earrings

Chanel Classic Flap Bag
$4,798 via Portero

Most people go with black when they’re shopping for a Classic Flap (or any Chanel bag), but Chanel does a lovely, season-defying taupe, too. In addition, the patent finish will make the bag a bit more resistant to wear.

Chanel Classic Flap Bag

Cartier Panther 18k Gold Watch
$4,950 via Portero

After you get the stainless steel Rolex, you get the gold Cartier. It’s just how you build a watch wardrobe.

Cartier Panther 18k Gold Watch

Hermes Birkin
$23,500 via Portero

You didn’t think we’d leave out the ultimate classic, did you? Hermes is masterful at choosing just the right shade, which means that almost all its non-neon, non-patent colors are perfect for year-round use. This blue is especially gorgeous.

Hermes Birkin Bag 34-15

One of my favorite shows from New York Fashion Week was Belstaff. I know many of you don’t think of the brand when you think of designers that show in New York, but with the resurgence of the brand, be prepared to have the Belstaff name in your repertoire.

The brand will have an exciting lineup of handbags for Fall 2013, but before those pieces hit stores, I found a bag that is available immediately and quite lovely. Behold, the classic and super functional Belstaff Nottingham 38 Bag, a design that translates from work to weekend with ease. It’s been a while since I felt drawn to a hobo, but this shape and design is seamless and quite lovely. On top of that, it’s very well priced for the current handbag market and the quality of the materials used. Buy via Belstaff for $1,495.

The web is vast, and with its vastness comes so many sites that would like to sell us designer bags that it can be hard to decide which sites we love and trust most. When online shopping is your job, you become highly aware of the best. I’ve been a longtime lover of Portero.com, and after having the opportunity to talk to the CEO, my love for the company has grown. There are so many reasons I love Portero, but here are five big reasons why I just can’t get enough (and you won’t be able to either!).

1) Portero guarantees the authenticity of its items

Portero has been recognized by the New York Times and Wall Street Journal for its remarkable customer service and guarantee of authenticity on every purchase. We’re all accustomed to keeping an eye out for the best in pre-owned luxury items because that’s often the best way to get a good value for your money, and having a guarantee of authenticity takes away any inkling of fear when making a purchase.

2) Portero clearly states the condition of the items, so you don’t need to wonder

Another reasons buying pre-owned items from other sites can leave you feeling wary is that you aren’t always sure what you’re going to get. Portero takes away the concern by explicitly stating the condition of each piece and providing clear pictures that photos of any and all wear. Each item is marked as pristine, excellent, very good, good, or fair. This way you will get exactly what you see on their website, no guessing or finger-crossing required. Another plus, you don’t want to leave your house to scour consignment stores, just put on your comfiest clothes and find the item of your dreams.

3) Portero carries one of the world’s most amazing selections of super rare bags

Reason 3 might be my favorite aspect about Portero: the site’s selection is not only vast, but also includes one of the most well-rounded groups of extremely rare bags I have ever seen, and they update all the time. From suede Hermes Birkins, to gold Chanel backpacks, to the highly coveted Hermes Gulliver Kelly Idole Bag, the array is so good that I barely know where to start. The array includes vintage finds and current limited editions like Kusama for Louis Vuitton and Celine Luggage Totes.

4) Portero isn’t new to the industry – the site has been around since 2004

Tons of companies pop up every single day and fail to last for a few months, let alone many years. Portero has been around since 2004, which means it has a long-standing reputation and its staff knows this industry well. Portero brings ample value to the shopper, which is a process that has been perfected over the last eight years.

5) Looking for something specific or rare? Portero will find it for you.

Porter’s finder service is a great feature, because tracking down the EXACT bag you are looking for can feel like finding a needle in a haystack. If you have a bag you are absolutely pinning for, Portero will help you find it. Their resourceful authentication will work hard to find the bag for you, which means that you can stop scouring consignment stores and auction sites while the pros take over.

P.S. Right now Portero is having a $1,000 pin-to-win promotion that you can enter!

Every day at 12 pm EST, I click my way over to MYHABIT to see exactly what they have in store for the day so I can shop amazing items at even better prices. The shipping is so fast (similar to MYHABIT’s parent company, Amazon), and the product selection continues to grow. We already contribute to their blog, the Fix, and this month, we’ve partnered with them to bring you a one-stop holiday bag shop.

Just in time for the holidays, I rounded up MYHABIT’s best handbags and put them in a boutique just for you. From premiere designers like Chanel, Prada and Tod’s, to chic contemporary brands like Olivia Harris and more, I’ve teamed up with MYHABIT made a bag shop so you can buy the perfect bag for those you love (or yourself!) this holiday season. Make sure to read all about my picks on The Fix, and more importantly, don’t miss out on this amazing sale.

Shop the PurseBlog bag shop on MyHabit now!

If you’ve never seen a Loewe bag in person, you really should. They’re hard to find in most American cities, but they’re becoming a bit more common, and holding one in your hands is wildly different than seeing it on a computer screen. When the Spanish brand first re-emerged with handbag genius Stuart Vevers at its helm, I was a little bit ambivalent about its bags, but as I’ve mentioned before, handling them in person changed that for me. The leather? Like buttah.

I’m clearly not the only person who feels that way, if the quickness with which Loewe’s bags tend to sell out online is any indication. Bright colors go particularly quickly, which is why you might want to jump on Moda Operandi’s Loewe Resort 2013 pre-sale if you’ve been eyeing the brand’s bags. You can check out the sale’s full offerings after the jump or skip straight to shopping via Moda Operandi. The pre-sale runs through July 11. (more…)

I know, I know. It’s hard to separate the old image of Victoria Beckham, the Spice Girl and soccer WAG who used to permanently occupy the worst dressed list, from the New, Improved Victoria Beckham of the past several years, who always looks impeccably put together and who runs one of the only legitimate celebrity-backed fashion lines in the business. Beckham’s is one of the most profound style shifts in recent memory, but at this point, though, you conflate the new with the old at your own peril – the Victoria Beckham Fall 2012 handbags are THAT good.

See that bag up there? Luxurious, just minimal enough, dove grey with a gorgeous dark sage python inset? It’s among the chicest handbags that I’ve seen from any designer for Fall 2012, and that’s including all the big handbag names who have all the money in the world to hire the best accessories designers. Victoria has done a lot of stuff correctly with her fledging line, including hiring incredibly talented people to bring her vision to life. Don’t deny yourselves something great just because of the name associated with it – that’s just as silly as buying a terrible bag only because it’s from a brand you like. Check out the full collection after the jump. (more…)

I’m betting that you all remember the agony and the ecstasy that resulted from The Row releasing a $33,000 alligator backpack as part of its Spring 2012 collection. Some people gushed over it and media outlets reported that the piece sold out, but most of the accessories community gave the bag’s astronomical price tag a heavy eye-roll; it takes a good bit of nerve for a brand as new as The Row to go around demanding those kinds of prices, even if you think the bags are beautiful. (Which I do.)

The backpack must have indeed been popular, though, because The Row Fall 2012 is chock full of additional alligator options, not to mention python and lizard. We know from experience that The Row’s small python and lizard bags generally start at $5,000 and head upward, with the alligator options all priced well into the five figures. Still, though, I can’t help but be enchanted by at least half of these bags; The Row did a fantastic job boiling them down to the basics in the most luxurious way possible, even if the brand is still well above the price point that most bag buyers would like to see. Check out the entire collection after the jump. (more…)

It’s not hard to see why Jason Wu is one of our favorites; not only is Wu one of America’s greatest young designers, but he manages to do ladylike and feminine without making the entire enterprise feel stodgy and old fashioned. He walks a very fine aesthetic line and he walks it very well and to great effect. I’m sure you’ve noticed the excitement over Wu’s impending Target collection, and that anticipation didn’t come out of nowhere.

We were lucky enough to get our hands on the lookbook for Jason Wu Pre-Fall 2012 accessories, and the handbags are exactly what you’d expect – elegant without being too stiff, girlish without being too prim. As you could probably guess, my favorites were the brights. Check out the photos and let us know which designs you like in the comments. (more…)

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