If you aren’t yet familiar with Beirn’s snakeskin bags, where have you been? The company has been producing affordable watersnake purses for several years now, and they’ve pretty much had the market cornered on exotics that won’t totally bust your budget.

During a recent trip to Neiman Marcus, I noticed that the brand had started making many of their most popular designs out of intricately woven snakeskin. For functionality’s sake, my favorite of the lot is the Beirn Jenna Woven Watersnake Tote.

Normally I’m not much of a fan when a designer takes an exotic material and slices and dices it into something nearly recognizable, but since watersnake is so inexpensive (and perhaps a bit plain) compared to the likes of python and crocodile, I don’t really have the same kind of philosophical issues with this bag. In fact, the super-thin strips of snake make the final product more intriguing; when I saw it from afar, I immediately had to approach it to inspect the material more closely. The finished effect is truly unique, and for snakeskin, the price can’t be beaten. Buy through Bloomingdale’s for $416. (It’s on sale!)

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