Although much of the United States appears to be dealing with a late-arriving and unwelcome bout of winter weather, that doesn’t mean that it will never be warm again. (Or does it? Seriously, I’m starting to wonder.) Eventually, the sun will come out for good, or at least until October, and the temperatures will rise and we’ll all pull out the purchases that we’ve been hoarding for the past few weeks in anticipation of warm weather’s return.

With bright solids making up much of the season’s clothing trends, there’s never been a better time to experiment with accessories – everything from oversized jewelry to embellished shoes looks great against a background of solid color, but obviously, our favorite choice for an off-kilter spring accessory is a patterned bag. I’m not just talking about animal print, either; we’ve got choices for almost any budget and personal style, ranging from psychedelic flowers to pale abstraction. And, ok, one leopard bag for good measure.

Kate Spade has been making a solid selection of patterned bags for years, and the Kate Spade Paley Paisley Medium Sidney Tote incorporates some of the hottest colors of the season in a simple, functional shape. Buy through Nordstrom for $255.

If you’d prefer something a bit more subdued and a lot more expensive, the Bottega Veneta Printed Leather Slouchy Tote provides a subtle yet striking combination of white and grey. Buy through Net-a-Porter for $2680.

At this point, one of my goals in life is to own a piece featuring one of Alexander McQueen’s exquisite digital prints, such as the Alexander McQueen De-Manta Printed Clutch. (I like to keep my goals manageable.) Buy through Neiman Marcus for $475.

Milly’s handbag line, brand new for Spring 2011, features tons of great multicolored and patterned bags at a very reasonable contemporary price point. The Milly Rose Garden Tote is big enough to use to make a very bold statement, if that’s your style. Buy through Nordstrom for $295.

I tried to make this list without any animal prints since we’ve already done several posts on that trend, but the purple and gunmetal iteration of the Mulberry Bayswater Belt Bag is just too cool to resist. Warm weather? Cold weather? It doesn’t matter; this is a year-round favorite. Buy through Net-a-Porter for $425.

You won’t find many handmade bags at this price point, and the neo-Native American pattern and beaded finish of the Paul and Joe Perlee Handmade Beaded Bag fit the season’s print and texture trends to a T. My recommendation, though, is to find a retailer that sells bags actually made by Native Americans so that you can get the look and contribute the the sustenance of the culture simultaneously. Buy through Net-a-Porter for $315.

P.S. Please consider supporting our small, bag-loving team by clicking our links before shopping or checking out at your favorite online retailers like Amazon, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, or any of the listed partners on our shop page. We truly appreciate your support!

Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • gpc

    No thanks, I’ll pass.

  • Raphaela

    Gosh, I totally lurve the brightly coloured Kate Spade tote and McQueen’s printed clutch. Perhaps, the former is oriented towards day-use while the later, an evening out with gals or that special someone. I can already picture which outfit in my wardrobe that would pair perfectly with that gorgeous embroidered clutch. Somehow, the flower pattern screams Asian to me. Japanese, anyone? Perlee’s beaded bag reminds me of Kalimantan’s ethnic arts and craft. In Indonesia, there are tonnes of such wonderfully handmade beaded pieces, ranging from purse, bag to accesories like necklace, ring and bracelet. Even
    pencil/pen holder and namecard holder. Furthermore, I notice that stingray leather commonly utilised as wallet, belt and handbag in Indonesia are finding its way into luxurious brands. More recently, LV and Calvin Klein’s spring clutch. Just like the ratan bags that made its debut on the runway show a few years ago, I believe Perlee, LV and CK had Indonesia on their mind when designing their bags. Inspirations
    do come from whole wide world, indeed.

  • Marianna

    I really like the Milly with it’s bold print and tortoise shell hardware. I don’t have the figure to wear this pattern but I could definitely carry it. I know they call it rose garden but it looks more like poppies to me.

  • M. Johnson

    I love printed purses! Animal prints are by far my favorite, but I love the floral ones that you have featured here! I also love being able to match up a purse with a wallet. I just got a fun new giraffe wallet ! Could handbags/wallets/clutches get any more fun? Love it!

  • Lulugurl

    So pretty and springy!!

  • cathy

    I’ve seen that Bottega IRL and it’s gorgeous – need to save for that one!

  • Musette

    I’m usually not a fan of patterned purses (I own a whopping ‘two’) but the BV is gorgeous!

    That Milly looks to be covered in poppies to me (What Marianna Said)


  • 19yearslater

    Kate Spade and Milly, yes please.

  • Raphaela

    So, the 80s bucket bag is back. Been seeing a lot of the style in stores. They are not the kind of bags I’d like to spend a fortune on though. I’ve never found myself liking bucket bags. As far as I’m concerned, they are just very unflattering.

  • Mochababe73

    I own absolutely zero printed bags. I didn’t even realize it until I read the blog and looked in my closet. Not a one.
    These don’t even change my mind. At one time, I did want one of those Simone Camille ones like Miley Cyrus had until I looked at the price.

  • KaylaNiche

    The McQueen is just GORGEOUS!!

  • Cathy Fitz

    It looks like I’m in the minority, but pattern bags just don’t work for me. They compete with my outfits. Would rather have just one beautiful pop of color.

  • kalaivani

    wow……. superb………………