Valentino does two very disparate things very well. They somehow manage to make both bags that are elegant in their simplicity and bags that are fabulous in their over-the-top adornment. Those two design philosophies are at opposite ends of the aesthetic spectrum, and their mastery of both makes them one of the most exciting accessories brands on the market right now.

The Valentino Nappa Studded Bow Tote is a bag of the first type, although the swagger and design confidence is indicative of a brand that has all but mastered the second. Excuse me while I drool all over Valentino for another paragraph or two…

Valentino Nappa Studded Bow Tote

It’s just…lovely. And not in an overly twee way, either. The studs and black leather give the bag some toughness, but the oversized sculptural bow provides a nice counterpoint, and the graded size of the studding flows nicely with the bag’s pleated lines. It’s neutral enough to be worn as an everyday bag, but would easily be the best everyday bag that any of your friends have. It’s also prohibitively expensive, but at least Valentino makes bags that are interesting and inventive enough to be sometimes worth the prices. Buy through Saks for $2795.

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