We’ve featured Lady Gaga on PB thrice in the last few weeks, in three outfits that were worlds apart from each other (as is her style), and yet two had something in common: Versace. Here’s Gaga coming out of the Sirius Satellite Radio offices in NYC after doing a little promo for her forthcoming album (which seems like it’s been forthcoming for 100 years), channeling Jodie Foster’s character from Taxi Driver.

Here’s Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta coming out of a building in NYC, playing the part of exorbitantly wealthy (yet slightly confused) ingénue this week, instead of walking piece of performance art that she was days ago. (We love you both ways, Lady Gaga. Don’t ever change.) She’s carrying a Versace Medusa Tote, which is from the Spring 2014 runway and, as you might suspect, not available to the masses just yet.

Miley Cyrus has been a busy little bee as of late, buzzing from press gig to Cosmopolitan cover party to New York Fashion Week show. Here she is in NYC rocking a bowler hat, a LOT of beaded fringe and a Versace Signature Tote. Those bold, gold Medusa studs pair perfectly with Miley’s whole “80s hipster grandma” get-up. Miley is seen carrying the bag top handle-style here, sans the detachable strap.

Images via Vogue.com

Before taking a look at the stills from Versace Fall 2012, I had heard the collection repeatedly described as Rooney Mara-inspired and high-end goth and all of these other things that made me think that the handbags stood a chance in hell of being really, really good. I was hopeful, you guys. Genuinely hopeful. I should know better by now.

Versace Baroque Print PVC Tote, $1125 via Net-a-Porter

At first, I had no issue with the Versace Baroque Print PVC Tote. The yellow-on-white pattern may not be my personal taste, but it’s the kind of strong, intricate visual for which Versace is known, so I can’t fault them for pursuing that aesthetic. What I CAN fault them for, though, is charging over a thousand dollars for a very basic tote that’s not even real leather.

Versace Metallic Leather Shoulder Bag, $1625 via Net-a-Porter

Over the past few seasons, I’ve tried to be optimistic about Versace and its bags. I’ve been a long-time skeptic of the brand’s accessories while still being a big fan of the brand’s clothing, both ready-to-wear and atelier, and it’s seemed at times that the bags were just one or two steps away from where they should be.

Images via Racked.com

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Versace x H&M is the high-low collaboration of the season. Slated to debut at select stores on November 17, the collection includes everything from leather jackets and dresses to a few home goods, which is a first for H&M’s designer dabblings. What’s relevant to us, of course, is that the partnership has also produced bags.

Images via Vogue.com

I have some relatives who live in South Florida. I haven’t visited since I was a teenager, but my memories of Floridian seaside kitsch are still very clear: pastel starfish and seahorses and shells. Lots of them. Adorning everything from t-shirts to upholstered furniture. If the bags from Versace Spring 2012 are any indication, Donatella Versace may have spied on my childhood vacations quite frequently.

We aren’t known to be the biggest Versace supporters at our site, but we’ve been feeling a it warmer lately. I know some people absolutely love the brand, but Donatella’s accessories almost always go over the edge of overt opulence; they’re often too ornate for my liking. However, upon seeing the Versace Structured Snake-Effect Leather Tote I felt true excitement. Sure, the overall design is simple, but the python print along with the coloring screams “fall statement piece.” (It also sort of screams “Valentino Fall 2011,” but that’s another post entirely.) The sad news is that PurseBloggers, we have a problem: the price.

Versace Baroque Printed Bag, $995 via Net-a-Porter

I’m as hard on Versace as anyone, but I like to think of it as a tough love situation. I talk smack because I want the brand to improve its handbags, not because I take any particular delight in its struggles. Although I have to admit, some of the company’s past bags have been almost delightfully bad, so there may have been a modicum of enjoyment on my part.

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