Some trends are impossible to miss or ignore (remember when everything was neon in, like, 2012?), but others are so understated that they might slip right under your radar unless you spend as much time looking at bags as we do. That's probably the only way we would have ever noticed that things in the bag market have been looking especially round lately.
Circular hardware is never exactly rare when it comes to bags--curved pieces are often used as handle attachments in particular because they help straps move naturally with the body of the person carrying them. Lately, though, hardware rings and other circle embellishments have taken a more prominent--and often primary--role, including handles, closures and non-functional embellishments. The trend started up after The Row released a series of bags with ring handles and is now particularly popular with directional or up-and-coming labels like JW Anderson and Brother Vellies, so its fashion pedigree is impeccable.
In the current market, most high-end bags exist at one end or the other of the aesthetic spectrum: either they're in the vein of Céline minimalism or Gucci maximalism. Almost all of the circle-adorned bags fall to the minimalist side of things, which makes sense--circles are a neat, clean, unassuming way to add visual interest without making a bag feel cluttered or purposefully decorated. After all, the shape is something that occurs naturally in bag design in the first place, even if it's usually in a supporting role.
Below, check out 15 examples of the trend that you can shop right now.