To quote the title of one of my all-time favorite episodes of Sex and the City, I love a charade. Well, a fashion charade, that is. It almost never fails to impress me when designers are able to take a material that has a certain set of expected characteristics and make it look like something completely different. Earlier this week, I was impressed by how much Maison Martin Margiela made bike reflectors look like sequins, and now I’m feeling similarly pleased with the Bottega Veneta Woven Leather Tote.

On first examination, it looks like a really nice straw tote. And of course, I would expect that any straw bag coming from the Bottega Veneta workshops to be really nice, just like all of their leather offerings. That’s the thing, however – this IS one of their leather offerings. Plus it has a little bit of croc trim, just for good measure.

That the fine folks at BV managed to dye and weave soft leather in such a perfect way to make it mimic straw totally blows my mind. The color variation is subtle and utterly terrific, and the weaving differs just enough from the brand’s iconic intrecciatio that it makes you nearly certain that the material they’re using must be different. But it’s not – it’s your perception that’s different.

At its best, fashion plays with visual ideas in ways that are thought provoking and new. Bottega may not get as much credit as they deserve for being innovative because they have such a classic, widely recognized look for a lot of their bags, but this tote should be enough to make anyone look at them anew. Buy through Bergdorf Goodman for $5700.

  • Mochababe73

    I am truly blown away by the treatment on that leather. I was fooled as well because I really thought that this was straw. It’s worth every penny.

  • April C.

    Amazing!! Love how they were able to pull this one off in leather! Beautiful!! (fb)

  • Kellybag

    Italians just know how to make the most beautiful things!

  • Chris

    That truly is amazing craftsmanship, but why would I want a leather bag that looks like straw? It seems counter-intuitive to me. When I think straw, I think breezy, beachy afternoons, or trolling the farmer’s market in a sundress, not $5,700 worth of leather – seems like an expensive inside joke. (fb)

    • Stacy

      You took the words right out of my mouth. (fb)

  • fantehu

    a very beautiful bag,mamamia (fb)

  • CC

    Ha! Amazing work

  • Christina

    Love this…hate how straw bags snag my outfits. Too bad I can’t afford it! (fb)

  • Jen

    I don’t love this bag… I don’t understand the want/need for straw bags though… It is impressive though, it’s a good misconception :)

    (fb)

  • Jenna

    I’m not crazy about the straw, but I do love the shape (fb)

  • carrie

    Love the bag, but for that price I don’t want a bag that “looks like straw.”

  • Rosanna

    Beautiful weaving! I’m not too crazy about the straps though. (fb)

  • SY

    I love this idea and this bag, not usually a BV fan! (fb)

  • mai

    Beautiful. I was fooled.(fb)

  • Debbie

    Wow, that’s amazing. I thought it was straw at first glance and was like “bleh”. I love the woven style, and Bottega Veneta always has some of the best looking woven styles. This would be a great summer bag. (fb)

  • mj

    I love this! If I had the money I was totally get it.

    *sigh*

  • Lydia M

    OMG! love at first sight!… (fb)

  • Deb

    Absolutely stunning…and I would have thought it was straw…out of my price range unfortunately! (fb)

  • CoachGirlJami

    I LOVE that it is leather and dyed to look like straw – how awesome! Out of my price range, though, so I’ll just have to lust for it from afar. :) (fb)

  • bagalove

    I almost bought this gorgeous BV bag, but man, the bag is heavy because it’s all leather!! Ladies, if you don’t mind the weight, get it!! It’s the yummiest bag from BV!

  • Bonniesgirl

    Could be my “go to” bag this summer!!! (fb)

  • Houn

    Love it, love it, love it! The look of a straw tote without the scratchiness and with the durability of a fine leather bag. (fb)

  • cge

    ADORE it!!! Incredibly, deliciously stunning! BV and Hermes are second to none in their workmanship. I would give (almost) anything to own this bag!!

  • Caroline

    I like it…I have always liked the look of a straw bag, but not the feel or durability….this one would work just great…thanks ‘(fb)’

  • Andrea

    luvluvluv it!!! (fb)

  • kim

    Too bag this bag is sold out on the BV website along with Neiman, etc.!!!

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

      It’s still available at Bergdorf’s, I just checked! We just couldn’t link straight to it.

  • reneeo

    It’s gorgeous! I LOVE it. If I could afford it – I would get it. It’s amazing!

  • Emily

    Cute and good idea, but, not worth the price tag IMO. (fb)

  • Dawne Strehl

    Me likey! ‘(fb)’

  • Aprile

    I love the look of this. (fb)

  • Felicia

    Absolutely STUNNING. (fb)

  • faline

    I really like this bag! There is no way in heck that I could afford it at that price, but I still like it. (fb)

  • Allison

    Oh my goodness. How cute is that and I just LOVE the color. Great for summer.

  • CC

    forgot to add (fb) at the end of my first comment! (fb)

  • Kiwishopper

    Amazing leather workmanship!!! Love it :) (fb)

  • brookelyn

    LOVE IT! how gorgeous is that?! (fb)

  • Sofia Nolan

    very summerish, I could wear this, if just a little bit bigger, in the park with my kids, during one beautiful summer day or at the beach.
    day by day it wouldn`t be my style

    • April B

      LOVE IT! (fb)

  • Christy

    It’s more like a beach bag (fb)

  • Chi

    I love the fact that they were truly skilled at doing all the precise work of matching the leathers to look like straw and weaving it in and out ..

    (fb)

  • BLynnT

    I’ve really been starting to like BV a lot more lately (maybe just better appreciation for the technique/style), but that seems like a lot of money when it really looks like a straw bag. I would love to see it in person though to see how the leather/straw look translates in real life. (fb)

  • Tanya

    great summer find! (fb)

  • renee

    what workmanship…what a price! (fb)

  • berta

    how gorgeous is that?! (fb)

  • SisiEko

    I’ll take it to the beach! love, love , love it! (fb)

  • Gelynn

    Wow that’s leather? Amazing! Great bag!

    • Gelynn

      (fb) oops!

  • Jane

    perfect for the summer i love it! (fb)

  • Stacy

    wow – that is truly gorgeous! (fb)

  • Cat-Janet

    Stunning!! Amazing what they can do with leather! (fb)

  • CS

    Has a very summery/beachy feel to it! Nice! (fb)

  • Theresa W

    Oh, wow! I’m impressed!!! Loving it!!! :) (fb)

  • Clary

    Stunning! (fb)

  • hikarupanda

    This is actually the only bag that I really like from this season’s collection…..too bad the price is a bit steep for me!

  • Allison

    Just love the color of the bag. (fb)

  • Kristin

    Gorgeous! Love the weave and colour! (fb)

  • Laura

    What a gorgeous purse and I love that it is leather and NOT straw! Leather will last a lot longer and I am strong believer that leather is easy to make “go” with multiple outfits. Love it! (fb)

  • Liz G.

    I love this Bag and can’t get over that is hand made! Truly a work of art!

  • A. Y.

    lovely!! it really does look like a straw bag but with the softness of leather!! (fb)

  • Susie

    Wow that is amazing! So simple looking yet you know this was done with alot of thought to detail and great craftsmanship. I love it. Thank you for sharing!

  • kimberly

    i love the looks of this bag. i hope to see it irl! wish i could talk dh into getting me this! (fb)

  • Paula

    This is a beautiful bag!! Hope I win it!! (fb)

  • Mellysa

    BV is my forever love, i just bought the nuvolato paille large veneta, can’t wait to pour my <3 for 'him' (fb)

  • Reese

    I absolutely LOVE woven bags but hate how impractical and not really only usable one season they are. The leather weave is brilliant! I’m not one for items over $2k, but this would be worth it. (fb)

    • Donna

      That bag screams Spring to me! (fb)

    • charles morrison

      Hey reese,You should Contact me immediately.We got those bags and can get them to you ASAP!Hurry up cos they are hotcakes!While stocks last.

  • VERON

    What a lovely bag, i wish my hubby want to buy it for me (fb)

  • s3rndpt

    I love BV….it’s so elegant and understated. This is a perfect example! (fb)

  • Mary

    Love it! I just happen to be wearing my vintage purple crossbody BV – it’s so cute. Just love BV!! (fb)

  • Lindsey

    I think the construction is impeccable. Go Bottega. (fb)

  • otter

    Whoa baby.

  • spanish moss

    i heart bv/g

  • Chris

    Wow i didn’t think it was leather at all! Love this bag

  • redhairedash

    lurve it!! what appears to be kind of scratchy straw turns out to be buttery mooshy leather? sign me up!! (fb)

    • charles morrison

      Hey redhairedashley You should Contact me immediately.We got those bags and can get them to you ASAP!Hurry up cos they are hotcakes!While stocks last.

  • Meredith

    This is beautiful. Wish I had a BV (fb)

    • charles morrison

      Hey You should Contact me immediately.We got those bags and can get them to you ASAP!Hurry up cos they are hotcakes!While stocks last.

  • Jane

    I am in love with this bag to be able to render a bag in leather and make it look like straw is wonderful. I like the look of straw, but despise the feel and smell, and the inevitable demise of the straw itself after a few good uses. I paid a pretty penny for a straw hat when they were “in” circa Julia Roberts in Runaway Bride and it died so quickly. Now here you have this incredible bag that looks like straw, and can you believe the color oh the color is glorious. I would love to be able to buy this bag, but sadly I can not.

    • charles morrison

      Hey jane,You should Contact me immediately.We got those bags and can get them to you ASAP!Hurry up cos they are hotcakes!While stocks last.

  • 19yearslater

    Wow, this is fantastic. It really looks like straw but holds up and feels like the leather it is? Genius. I absolutely love it.

  • bunnyb

    Cute bag! Straw made of leather! AWESOME! (FB)

  • michele

    Fabulous! (fb)

  • Harpal

    its of the finest handbags i have watching this season, would love to get one for my love(wife) fb

    • charles morrison

      Hey harpal,youre in luck!You should Contact me immediately.We got those bags and can get them to you ASAP!Hurry up cos they are hotcakes!While stocks last.

  • Sylvia

    Beautiful. I can only dream of getting a BV (fb)

  • Amanda

    seriously classy…

  • Mica

    Beautiful bag, I love how it really does look like a straw bag, but is certain to be much more reliable and usable as it’s made of leather! :) (fb)

  • Linda

    What a great idea. Love it. (fb)

  • Jessica

    i cant believe thats actually leather !! (Fb)

  • Tonda

    It is GORGEOUS! I love BV, I just can’t afford ‘em. But every time I am in Orange County or LV, I go in their Boutiques and drool!! (fb)

  • Tamee

    BV is so in its own class. They do such amazing things with leather, and this is just yet another example of WOW! (fb)

  • Jenn

    $5700? (gulp) I’m starting to think I need to see BV in person to appreciate it more fully. Until then… I’d rather add a few more Valentinos to my collection. (fb)

  • Karin bag4bag

    I don’t understand the appeal of this one. Why do I want my leather bag to look like a straw bag?
    I appreciate the skill of the construction and colouring, but it is not 4 me !

  • bonybynatur2003

    I love BV normally, but this one is a total turn-off. I didnt mind the Coach straw bags that were actually straw, but for some reason I just dont like this leather “straw” bag. Im actually surprised at the amount of people that are saying they love it. (fb)

  • Ann

    I like this one but the price is a no. (fb)

  • danamite

    this bag is gorgeous (fb)

  • Beverly

    I hate how woven straw looks, and leather isn’t much better. It’s an amazing idea and great craftsmanship, but really? You might as well just buy a normal woven straw bag for 15 bucks at a flea market. (fb)

  • elizabeth

    This is really beautiful. I passed by this the first time because I really thought this was a straw bag and I really dislike straw bags. (fb)

  • Shannon

    beautiful! I can’t believe that’s leather! (fb)

  • nicole

    i don’t know how i feel about the material!! >FB)

  • ginny

    so pretty! i want to pick apples with it! (fb)

  • ShoeQueen1961

    They make the same handbags on John’s Island [Charleston, South Carolina area] for thousands of dollars less. Ridiculous!!!

    • andie

      ShoeQueen1961 – would love to know more! Do you have any more info you can pass along? Many thanks!

      • ShoeQueen1961

        Yes; however the information is a bit limited… During the summer; there are plenty of African American vendors who are natives to the area that weave everything from baskets to handbags. My late father was from Charleston and he had a few relatives that practiced this artisan craft exceedingly well [I have a very large yet vintage woven leather tote in navy blue that was given to me years ago by a cousin]. I’m uncertain if these individuals sell in the actual city of Charleston [If they do; the mark-ups are probably ridiculous amounts for tourists!!!] However, these items can certainly be found on the small islands/regions of the area [again] Johns Island, St. Andrews, Mt. Pleasant, Kiawah Island, etc. Good Luck!!!

  • Bagenvy

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this bag! I have this page book marked! I called both Bottega Venetta and Bergdorf Goodman today to reserve this bag. This is a nice summer bag!

  • Bagenvy

    Can’t wait to see this baby in real life!!

  • Hellena

    absolutely LOVE!! (fb)

  • Kitti Laki

    So cute! I would love it for summer. (fb) Contest Entry!

  • kellie wilson

    omg this is super adorable..what a great summer bag!!
    fb

  • Angelsgueglia

    Love it!!! makes me think of a summers day,not that we see to many of them in England.
    (fb)x

  • lily

    cute, but the price is omg. (fb)

  • Kendra

    Not cute. (fb)

  • Deb

    a nice bag for the beach. too bad its getting colder now on my side of the world. (fb)

  • kylie

    im not into this… maybe the little piggie would like it ;) (fb)

  • Stacia

    Breath-taking! love it. (fb)

  • Elyse

    this is absolutely incredible and shows you how talented the team at BV really are (fb)

  • Alanna

    this is beautiful :) (fb)

  • Adrienne Challinor

    i’m going to the beach next month. i could really use a show-offy tote like this to be the envy of all others on the beach! fb
    chichijunk at cs dot com

  • Jocelyn

    It looks like a perfect bag to bring on a picnic in the park.

    Tag for Linea Pelle (fb)

  • Joy

    not liking it very much..
    sorry to say :(
    (fb)

  • Adrienne Zedella

    Want this! (fb)

  • Tiff Chao

    I understand that it’s the name that sells but for straws..I’ll pass this one. (fb)

  • Ellen

    The problem is, I would buy something else if I wanted a leather bag and if I wanted a straw tote I would want something cheaper. However, I think that this bag is really interesting. (ipad)