As smartphone screens (and by extension, the smartphones they’re attached to) get larger, it seems like clutches are getting smaller. Sure, I can take the case off my iPhone and wedge it into most of …
Christian Louboutin Cleo Sequined Satin Clutch, $2095 via Net-a-Porter
I miss a lot of things about college, and the crossword puzzle from the University of Georgia student newspaper is probably a lot higher up on that list than you’d expect. It was the perfect level of difficulty – I could finish it in about 45 minutes and feel challenged while still ultimately being victorious. Related: 45 minutes was approximately the length of one lecture class period at UGA. Over my four years there, I did hundreds of them.
Getting your news online brings with it a noticeable lack of crossword puzzles, which has left a sad little gap in my procrastination habits since 2008. The Christian Louboutin Cleo Sequined Satin Clutch isn’t literally a crossword puzzle in the same way that Louboutin has made literal tape measure shoes, but when I squint, it’s close enough for me. (more…)
When we talk about a bag having retro influences, we usually means that it harkens back a couple of decades – the 50s, the 70s, something like that. If a company is going really retro, maybe it even references the roaring 20s. Rarely, though, does a bag get all medieval on us like the House of Harlow Rey Bag does. This little velvet pouch has a slightly Renn Faire vibe to it, right? Are you digging it? (And yes, I know I’m mixing my eras here. The Renaissance was after the Middle Ages. I know!) (more…)
Bottega Veneta Metal Lace Karung Knot Clutch, $3980 via Bottega Veneta
One of my favorite parts of fashion is the gift of imitation. I remember being blown away by the pleats printed on the flat skirt of a Prada dress when I was younger, and the ability to trick the eye and make something expected out of something totally unexpected is one of the best visual treats you’ll find. It’s the kind of creativity that reminds us all why we pay these prices.
That’s exactly the kind of reaction that I had to the Bottega Veneta Metal Lace Karung Knot Clutch when I first saw it. On initial visual inspection, it just looks like regular black lace overlaid on a cream-colored fabric; a nice clutch, but not a particularly fascinating one. The reality, though, is much more interesting. (more…)
The Alexander McQueen Iris Skull Clutch is one of those bags that needs to be seen in the largest photo possible at all times; at a distance, you might mistake the detailed embroidery for printed fabric, and that would be a tragedy indeed. A bag like this can look like a hippie craft project without a very careful hand, but Alexander McQueen Spring 2011 took flowers and butterflies and someone manages to make them look beautifully transgressive. The juxtaposition of a skull with delicate flowers is something that only McQueen can pull off in a high-end way. (more…)
If brevity is the soul of wit, what’s the soul of fashion? I like maximalism as much as anyone (in fact, probably far more than most people), but the grandiosity of it can feel exhausting from time to time. The trends toward layering textures, colors and prints are some of my favorite fads in years, but that doesn’t mean I can’t look at the Valentino Satin Bow Box Clutch and think that it seems positively refreshing by comparison.
Valentino often goes maximal with its accessories, so the subtle charms of this little clutch are even more welcome. From the perfect shade of blush to the expertly obscured slot for hand-carry, this is an evening bag that doesn’t try to overshadow whatever beautiful dress with which you’ve surely paired it. (more…)
We all know that Christian Louboutin has the footwear world on lock, but the stiletto master’s results in the handbag world sometimes don’t have the aesthetic consistency of his shoes. Translating success in one design realm to success in another can be difficult, so creating a clutch that appeals directly to the hearts of those who already love Louboutin’s shoes is a great way to turn footwear customers into potential handbag customers. But this design goes even a bit further than that; the Christian Louboutin Pigalle Clutch takes what should be a novelty and elevates the sophistication level to make this clutch something truly impressive. (more…)
We’ve talked a lot about party bags lately, but the best bet for a party bag is always to find one that you can use for a variety of festivities, not just New Year’s Eve and the odd cocktail party that you may or may not attend a couple times per year. In those instances, it’s better to go with metallic leather than for something silk or covered in beading or crystals because not only will the clutch be more useful for a wider variety of events, but it will also be more durable.
Enter the Elie Tahari Avery Shoulder Bag. I’ve been a big cheerleader for Tahari’s accessory line since its inception, and this cute little bag is yet another piece that makes me glad that the company started making bags. (more…)
As the holiday party season starts to get into full swing, the question of what to wear hangs heavy in the minds of almost all party-goers. Particularly if the festivities are office-related, you might not want to wear things that are too obviously showy or expensive. Workplaces breed resentment, and in most industries, being seen as flaunting one’s wealth can be looked at as gauche.
That doesn’t necessarily mean you have to shy away from a glitzy little holiday clutch, though; you just have to find a way to do the look in an unexpected and fun way. The Rafe New York Erin Clutch provides precisely that opportunity: it’s little and sparkly, but it’s not over-the-top or obviously a designer bag. (more…)
Since tomorrow is Thanksgiving in the US and the ceremonious eating of the turkey has become an unofficial start to the Christmas season (no matter what stores wanted us to believe by putting up their decorations weeks ago, I’m still going with Thanksgiving), now’s a great time to discuss holiday wardrobe. Red, green and metallics of almost any variety are usually what people tend to wear to holiday parties, and although it’s great to be festive, incorporating those colors too heavily makes you look like just another Christmas decoration. Do you want to look like someone mistakenly draped you in tinsel? No, you don’t.
My advice would be to dress how you would to a normal cocktail occasion but incorporate one accessory in a season-appropriate color, and if I had an unlimited budget, the Lanvin Jeweled Nyota Shoulder Bag would be my red bag of choice for this year’s party rounds and beyond. (more…)
I know I just wrote about a Diane Von Furstenberg bag a couple of days ago, but for some reason, bags tend to come in spurts, either by brand or type. If I write about a black tote, there’s almost always a brand new black tote that I like much better waiting for me the next day. If I find a Marc by Marc Jacobs bag I hate, there’s always a great one coming right after it.
It happens too often for me to shrug it off as coincidence; the universe is clearly out to get me. At this point in the work week, though, I think the Diane Von Furstenberg Lytton Love Knot Minaudiere deserves a post, no matter what DVF bags might have come before it. (more…)
Usually, I’m a fan of a complicated clutch. The diminutive scale of an evening bag lends itself well to intricacy and detail because it merely provides a taste of a particular embellishment instead of the overwhelming dose that can come when lots of beading and embroidery are applied to a regular-sized tote or satchel.
Every design theory has its limits, though, and the Valentino Embroidered Pouchette pushes my feelings about complicated clutches to the very edge. This little bag has two colors of leather, two separate areas of beading, and one multicolor lace pattern juxtaposed with one monochromatic lace pattern. Oh, and studs. It also has studs, both on a bow and on the bag’s wrist strap. This list is getting kind of long, right? (more…)