Vanessa Bruno is sort of like the Kylie Minogue of handbags. She enjoys a high profile and wide popularity in Europe (France in particular), but when it comes to the American market, she’s more of a face in the crowd than a consumer force to be reckoned with. That doesn’t say anything about the quality of either woman’s product – it’s just how things have happened so far.

With the opening of a new store in Los Angeles and the debut of handbags like the Vanessa Bruno Athe Grande Besace Bag, Bruno is clearly trying to amp up her US presence and win new North American customers. Will it work? That remains to be seen.

I think an American market certainly exists for Bruno’s clothing and accessories, but it often seems as though it’s the blandest of her offerings that make their way to American retail. This bag isn’t bad, certainly, but it also doesn’t have much in the way of personality, which would be helpful for a brand trying to establish its identity in a glutted contemporary market. Bruno designs a lot of beautiful things, hopefully she’ll continue to increase her US presence and we’ll get to see them more frequently. Buy through ShopBop for $644.

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