Eva Mendes was spotted on her way to a taping of The View in NYC carrying a glossy green Marni Top Flap Triple Gusset Shoulder Bag. This Marni bag boasts an accordion-like interior with three separate compartments, and a shoulder strap which you can expand with a series of snaps. You can’t have Eva’s boyfriend, but you can console yourself with her handbag, which is now available for pre-order in navy blue for $1,460 at Neiman Marcus.

Having spent many an evening binge-watching Say Yes to the Dress, you could say that I have opinions about feathers as fashion embellishments. Perhaps even more so than fur, they’re the accouterment most likely to look tacky in a hurry unless applied with the utmost care and a rigorous editor’s eye. Most designers are capable of either of those things sporadically at best, which means that usually, it’s a good idea to simply step away from the feathers.

Marni is such a capital-F Fashion Person brand that I can’t help but love it. Unlike most of Marni’s Italian compatriots, the brand’s aesthetic isn’t particularly sexy or even sleek; instead, designer Consuelo Castiglioni prefers an androgynous quirk heavy in retro-modern prints. The clothes are impeccably fashionable, but they do take some confidence to wear convincingly. Amateurs need not apply.

As with many brands, though, Marni gets at least one (and probably several) orders of magnitude more accessible when you turn to the brand’s accessories.

I hate it when designers do this to me. I rant and rave all the time about what a raw deal it is for luxury consumers when brands try to use the power of their name to sell us things like the Marni Printed Vinyl Totes. Vinyl is not a luxury material, no matter whose hands have touched it, and these totes’ leather handles don’t let them off the hook.

Frequent PurseBlog readers know how much our whole team loves Marni. The Italian brand seamlessly blends a sense of luxury with an almost artistic retro minimalism that yields some amazing pieces that other designers just aren’t brave enough to make (or aren’t creative enough to think of in the first place). When our friends at Saks Fifth Avenue told us about the World of Marni project that they’ve been working on, which launches in stores and online today, we leapt at the opportunity to give you guys the first look.

How much do I love the Marni Layered Leather Satchel, exactly? A lot. I love it a lot. There is nothing not to love about it. I was prepared to whine a little bit that there’s no optional crossbody strap, but lo and behold, there is one. Absent that, I can think of literally nothing to complain about when it comes to this bag.

If someone who works in fashion tells you that her job doesn’t have any perks, I personally give you permission to slap her, or at the very least, call her a liar (but also slap her, because how often do you get a chance to backhand someone in real life and then blame it on a fashion blogger?) Tonight, the perk wagon came around and dropped me off squarely at the Marni x H&M press preview.

A few days ago, PurseBlog friend BryanBoy tweeted that Marni designer Consuelo Castiglioni would be the perfect replacement for Karl Lagerfeld once he’s ready to move on from Fendi, and I can’t help but completely agree. Marni’s signature retro-minimal approach gets better and more fully realized by the season, and Consuelo’s sense for accessories and embellishment keeps improving right along with it.

Images via Marni

My level of excitement for mass market designer collaborations always varies widely (and mostly wanes by the time that full lookbooks surface), but believe me when I say that Marni for H&M has been marked on my calendar since the day it was announced. Marni’s work is so modern and fun that I suspected that it would translate well to the fabrication of H&M – after all, materials like plastics and grosgrain ribbon are already a mainstay of the Italian brand’s aesthetic.

Marni Tote, $645 via Net-a-Porter

A couple of days ago, the fashion Internet exploded with news of H&M’s next collaborative partner – quirky Italian label Marni. Forget Versace – this is something I might actually consider standing in line for, particularly because a full menagerie of accessories will also be available, right along with the retro-modern prints and oddball color combinations for which Marni is known.

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