5 Under-the-Radar Bag Brands French Women Always Come Back to


(Image credit: @pia_mbd)

Pia carries the Numéro Dix handbag from Polène.

We've all heard of the major Parisian bag brands: Louis Vuitton, Saint Laurent, Chloé... the list goes on. But France is the birthplace of numerous other accessories labels, many of which you may never have heard of.

So, I've decided to introduce you to five French handbag brands that I think deserve more attention. One whose dresses and knitwear you might be familiar with already, another you've probably seen on some of your favourite influencers without realising it. Hopefully, a couple on the list will be entirely new to you.

They all have one thing in common, though. From each, you're sure to find an edit of elegant, love-forever bags, carefully crafted from premium materials. What else could we expect from French designers? It's a nation whose refined sartorial spirit inspires fashion enthusiasts the world over, so it makes sense that it would have a design sensibility to match.

Scroll on to get acquainted with these under-the-radar Gallic labels, then shop the standout styles from each.

1. Polène


(Image credit: @aidabadji_)

Polène is something of a cult label, not lauded quite as loudly as the capital's major fashion houses yet popular among an in-the-know crowd of influencers and editors. Visiting the brand's website, you can expect minimal shoulder bags sitting alongside more directional designs, each assembled with luxury and longevity in mind in the Spanish town of Ubrique.

Shop the brand:

2. Elleme


(Image credit: @hannastefansson)

If you're in the market for an artfully sculpted handbag with enduring appeal, turn to Elleme. You won't be the only one flocking to this on-the-rise label—our very own editor-in-chief, Hannah Almassi, cherishes her Baozi raffia bag.

Shop the brand:

3. Ateliers Auguste


(Image credit: @andi_mun)

I hadn't heard of Ateliers Auguste recently, and now I can't stop thinking about its line of timeless, wear-with-everything handbags. Each accessory is designed in Paris and hand-made in Italy using fine leather leftover from the food industry. Tell that to all the people who compliment you on your chic new bag.

Shop the look:

4. Sézane


(Image credit: @anoukyve)

Paris-born brand Sézane is likely already on your radar, but I know I've been guilty of overlooking its handbags in the past. If you too have been distracted by the stunning dress and knitwear collections, let me introduce you to the raffia and leather styles worthy of your wish list.

Shop the brand:

5. RSVP Paris


(Image credit: @leasy_inparis)

RSVP pays close attention to form and materials when designing its simple handbags, ensuring whichever you choose will be a long-term fixture of your wardrobe. Next time you're in Paris, make sure you stop by the label's light-filled showroom in Le Marais.

Shop the brand:

Next Up: Women in Paris Wear These 6 Elegant Basics More Than Anything Else

Freelance Fashion Editor

Bébhinn Campbell is an Edinburgh-based fashion and lifestyle writer and editor. She started her first blog at age 14 and went on to intern at print and digital publications in Berlin and London, including Dazed & Confused and Indie magazine.

A job at a fashion startup took Bébhinn from Ireland to Scotland in 2019, where she now works as a freelance journalist and copywriter covering everything from travel and interiors to styling advice. As a contributor to Who What Wear, Bébhinn always keeps her eyes peeled for emerging trends and looks worth writing about. She prides herself on her ability to cut through the noise and identify solid investment buys, exciting new brands and fresh takes on classic design.

In her spare time, Bébhinn enjoys perusing Edinburgh’s best vintage shops, working through her out-of-control book collection and watching dog reels on Instagram.