One thing I’ve learned from spending the past couple years of my life writing about handbags every day is that you can’t include a buckle closure on a bag without having it compared to Hermes immediately. And with good reason – the twist-lock belt closure is as central to the identity of the Birkin as diamond quilting is to a Chanel flap bag.
The Rebecca Minkoff Jane Satchel takes that element of handbag iconography and applies it to a younger, hipper, far less expensive bag, but the results are a tad mixed. Borrowing an identifiable detail from one of the world’s most expensive bags and putting it on one that retails for a few hundred dollars sets up an automatic comparison that’s almost always unfavorable for a contemporary designer.
This isn’t a bad bag by any stretch of the imagination, but crinkly glazed leather is perhaps not the choice I would have made when Hermes is going to be the first thing people think of when they look at you bag. It merely serves to underline the differences in quality between the two, and while the choice also might be an indication that Minkoff probably wasn’t out to imitate a Birkin, the comparison perseveres. Buy through ShopBop for $475.