The #1 Feature That Makes Handbags Look Cheap


(Image credit: The Style Stalker)

We've covered how to spot cheap shoes and skinny jeans from a mile away, but next up is perhaps the most cringeworthy when cheap-looking: handbags. There's something about a blatantly cheap handbag that instantly ruins an outfit. Your bag is one of the first things that people notice, so you want to put your best foot forward, right?

Per usual, to get to the bottom of exactly what it is that makes handbags look cheap, we reached out to an expert on the subject. This time, we consulted Paulina Liffner von Sydow of Little Liffner. The Stockholm-based brand launched in 2012 and has since risen in popularity. It can now be found among the Gucci and Chloé bags on Net-a-Porter. The brand prides itself in designing refined, wallet-friendly bags with a playful twist. We're pretty much obsessed with every gorgeous style.

On the subject of exactly what it is that makes a handbag look cheap, Liffner von Sydow divulged, "Too much shiny hardware and chains that don't have the right weight in the hand definitely make a bag look and feel cheaper to me." We completely agree that excessive hardware cheapens a bag in one fell swoop; minimal hardware is the way to go.

Liffner von Sydow also filled us in on what to look for when shopping for an expensive-looking bag. "Materials are key when it comes to creating a luxurious look and feel," she notes. "If the leather is beautiful, you're halfway there!" So now that you know what type of handbag to steer clear of, go on to shop expensive-looking handbags in a range of price points.

Allyson Payer
Senior Editor

Allyson is a senior editor for Who What Wear. She joined the company in 2014 as co-founder Katherine Power's executive assistant and over the years has written hundreds of stories for Who What Wear. Prior to her career in fashion, Allyson worked in the entertainment industry at companies such as Sony Pictures Television. Allyson is now based in Raleigh, North Carolina, and is originally from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She holds a BFA in theater. Her path to fashion may not have been linear, but based on the number of fashion magazines she collected as a child and young adult, it was meant to be.