Savvy Bags on a Budget
Every season, the average price of a designer handbag inches up, even if a lot of bag lovers’ budgets don’t increase along with them. Because of that, we always endeavor to cover bags at a variety of price points, and with all the new Fall 2014 arrivals in stores, we found quite a few that are totally lust-worthy while still being far below the four-figure price tags that often dot our posts.
Coach is in the middle of a major reinvention, and now the first full collection from creative director Stuart Vevers has arrived for purchase. The line is inspired by the American West and traditional workwear, and the bags have a slightly rough-around-the-edges feel that will be new to many of the brand’s longtime fans.
Despite providing fundamental, foundational wardrobe pieces for basically every woman (and most men) in New York City who might be considered even vaguely cool, Rag & Bone is still searching for its handbag groove. The brand’s bag line is relatively young and has yet to hit the cult status of Rag & Bone’s inescapable leather booties, but you could tell by the proud, prominent placement of the models’ bags in the Rag & Bone Spring 2015 show that the company’s designers, who rarely make an aesthetic misstep, intend to change that.
It seems as though, with every passing season, extremely literal accessories become more and more popular among luxury customers. If you’ve got Charlotte Olympia tastes on a contemporary budget (or if you just don’t want to shell out huge bucks for a piece that’s more novelty than wardrobe-staple), you’ll want to check out the Kate Spade Hello Tokyo line, new for Fall 2014, which finds its inspiration exactly where you’d expect.
We’re always on the lookout for new and unexpected places to buy handbags; after all, having more options makes it more likely that you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for and get a decent deal. Although you may associate Amazon with reasonably priced books and household goods, Amazon Fashion also holds an impressive selection of handbags, shoes and clothing, mostly at contemporary price points.
In general, men’s bags cost less than women’s do, even when the men’s version is based on a popular women’s design (and is larger than that design). The only place where that seems to be particularly untrue is when it comes to backpacks; perhaps designers assume that a man buying a luxury backpack is likely to be more accustomed to to exorbitant fashion pricing than one just trying to pick up a nice briefcase.
Even though it’s been a solid decade since I went off to college, this time of year makes me nostalgic for back-to-school shopping, no matter how many grey hairs I’ve recently started producing. (Spoiler alert: a significant number of grey hairs.) As you might expect, I have some thoughts on how to pick exactly the right bag for all your college needs, as well as some suggestions of what’s out there right now that fits the bill.