I’m hard on Jimmy Choo, but only because the company has such rich promise and resources that I tend to hold it to a higher standard than I would a smaller label with more limited ability to hire design firepower. To whom much is given, much is expected, and I expect greatness from Tamara Mellon and her design team. Occasionally, I get it.

The Jimmy Choo Phebe Woven Leather Tote might not seem like an innovative design achievement, and that’s because it’s not. What it is, though, is perhaps as close to an ideal high-end summer bag as you can get. And maybe that’s just as good, if not better.

We’ve spoken previously about the unpleasantness of laying down four figures for a straw bag, and it’s something that I just cannot bring myself to do. It’s not an issue of income, but one of principle – I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that those bags aren’t worth the exorbitant prices, and I already have to suspend disbelief to drop that kind of money on leather. To do it for straw is beyond the pale.

What Choo has given us here is the best of both worlds. This tote has the same breezy, lightweight, handmade (although it’s not) feel of a straw beach bag, but instead, it’s woven leather with a subtle shade variation and some seriously cool handle attachments. I wish it were also available in brighter colors, but if you like tan for spring, this is a great bag to get the beach feel with luxurious materials. Just don’t take it to the actual beach. Buy through Saks for $1650.

  • Jess

    The woven leather texture is nice, but as for the colour…I absolutely find this drab.

  • Sharon

    Nice, but isn’t it very familiar to a previous Bottega Veneta print?

    • http://www.purseblog.com/ Amanda Mull

      Bottega did leather-as-straw (http://www.purseblog.com/totes/bottega-veneta-woven-tote.html), but it really looked like straw unless you examined it closely. I don’t think Choo’s intention was to imitate with this design, but rather to offer an alternative that felt just as summery. I could be wrong, but if they were trying to make this tote in the image of that Bottega bag, they have a long way to go.

  • 19yearslater

    It still LOOKS like straw, and that’s not something I want to spend a ton of cash on even if it will last.

  • Mochababe73

    On one of the pictures, it actually looks spray painted. Not a fan.
    If it even looks like straw, I don’t want it.

  • louch

    Not sure – just not calling to me like it should for a Jimmy Choo bag. Maybe it’s the colours – don’t like them.

  • Maura

    Well, I really like it. It’s one of those bags that seems carefree, can wear it with so many things and lets the handles speak for themselves.

  • edoardo

    >Terrible, cheap and not chic at all! The worst bag of Choo!

    http://fashiondoesntexist.blogspot.com/

  • AW

    It’s a nice idea but tbh not super execution. The colors are drab and muddy and the style is a bit boho crazy lady for me.