I know the saying goes "diamonds are forever," but forget diamonds. In my mind, handbags are forever. All you have to do is know when to hang some styles up for a few seasons in favor of other, fresher-feeling alternatives. (To keep their shape, stuff them with newspaper before sending them to storage for the time being.)
Ahead of spring, I've begun noticing a larger-than-normal shift in terms of bag trends, with many of the tried-and-true favorites from the last few seasons starting to feel stale when compared to the flashy new ones that designers promoted on recent runways. The candy-colored and neon handbags that were once ubiquitous among the street style set have largely been replaced with an almost chili-like shade of red, with brands like Ferragamo, Prada, and Gucci all embracing the hue with open arms, while shockingly micro purses have been swapped out for shockingly large ones (that is, except in the case of evening occasions, where minaudières are having a moment).
While it's sad to say goodbye (for now) to the bags that have carried our most prized possessions every day for the last few years, the time has come for a changing of the guard. Ahead, see which styles are best to store away this season and the ones worth replacing them with.
After months of whispers around the fashion set, it's official: Mini bags aren't all that anymore. At last, we've come to our senses and realized that we do, indeed, have a lot of stuff, and unless we're going out for an occasion that calls for very little—I'm thinking dinner, the ballet, or a formal party—we need our handbags to tote around our junk, from lipstick to five-minute journals to Caudalíe facial elixir, and so much more. Luckily, brands like Chanel, Saint Laurent, and Khaite understand our need for pure volume that still provides the stylish touch that our old favorite mini bags inherently had.
If spring's arrival always feels a bit too cheery and bright, let this season's studded trend be your edgy touch, especially in the handbag department. As opposed to dainty, beaded details covering our bags like they once did this time of year, studded alternatives by Prada, Alaïa, Khaite, and Gucci have the power to toughen up just about any look to just the right level, leaving you looking chic and in the know no matter what.
Photo:The Style Stalker; Stella McCartney; @erinoffduty; Ferragamo/ImaxTree; Ester Manas/ImaxTree
Goodbye, neon. Hello, hello all things red. If you've been paying attention to the runways for spring and fall of 2023, you're probably all too aware of the ubiquitous nature of chili-pepper red. And while shoes, belts, tights, and ready-to-wear have all been afflicted, handbags are the genre with the biggest impact.
Don't get me wrong; crossbody bags are great for traveling abroad, when you want to keep your important documents and more as close to you as possible. But to me, the handbag style has always been more for utility that looks, which is why I've made the decision to store all of my crossbodies away until my next vacation and prioritize quiet-luxury clutches like the ones currently in production at Toteme and Aquazzura.
Photo:Miu Miu/ImaxTree; @carodour; Source Unknown
As opposed to the decorative fanny packs that not too long ago dominated fashion month, the utility-belt bags that are currently blowing up are all about practicality. A result of Miu Miu's S/S 23 trend, these belts, which are wide and feature large pockets for all your bits and bobs, have reached everywhere status, with similar styles already showing up at Source Unknown and Mango.
If you like pretty things, the current return to fame of minaudières will make you and your bag collection extremely happy. Lately, oblong versions of the formal clutch style by Elsa Peretti, Simkhai, and Cult Gaia have been popping up allover my Instagram feed, seemingly replacing the satin drawstring bags that were once featured any time someone I followed attended a glamorous event.
Next: Coming up: 9 Major Trends That Will Define Fall 2023 Fashion
This post was previously published and has since been updated.