Keep Calm and Carry On: The Handbags We Love This Season

From micro minis to belt bags, these are our top picks straight out of Fashion Week.

By Paola Kustra September 30, 2019

When Simon Porte Jacquemus sent models down the runway last Paris Fashion Week with the smallest—and cutest—handbags ever made, the whole world watched in astonishment. Article after article appeared about what anyone could possibly fit in those tiny bags; suggestions proffered ranged from four Tic Tacs to a pair of AirPods to a person’s innocence.

While the topic was still hot off the press, other brands started producing smaller handbags of their own—like the croc-embossed mini flap top handle Kate Spade seen above. Shoppers ate it up, and Jacquemus became a sensation seemingly overnight. It’s rare to see such strong marketing plays go so right, but when they do, we're here to enjoy the show—and carry the bags, of course. And, as New York Fashion Week indicated, there are no signs of this trend slowing anytime soon.

We also saw plenty of pouches during NYFW, and Bottega Veneta struck gold among the fashionable set with influencers galore carrying the pouch clutch—in various hues, from earth tones to pastels to bright, shiny metallics—under their arms. It's also worth noting that the brand set the pace in the shoe department, too, with their square-toe or padded sandals and mesh stretch pumps. Kudos to Daniel Lee, who came to Bottega Veneta from Celine in 2018 and is already making waves with his designs.

Don't have the budget for a Bottega? Fret not—you might even find one from another brand in your own closet, like this take by Coach pictured above.

After Fendi reintroduced the original "It" bag this year to much success, the iconic double F logo made a huge comeback—with a little tailwind from the Kardashian krew—and designers are embracing the baguette once again. Pictured above is a version by Wandler, the brand known for the Hortensia and half-moon-shaped bags. The shape is certainly picking up steam for fall, especially in animal print—the pattern that's still going strong for bags, shoes, and clothes alike this season.

Chain links and revamped buckets are trending for fall, too. In an era of Instagram-induced stardom, brands like Danse Lente (see The Coco, a conceptual minimal cage bucket bag, pictured above), Staud, and Simon Miller have claimed their place at the podium.

Their geometric shapes can be simple yet modern and come in a variety of materials including leather. A chain link strap, like that of Simon Miller's Bend Bag pictured above, adds a touch of sophistication.

If you thought the belt bag would be over by now, you're not alone. Ever since Gucci introduced it with the GG Marmont line, part of the label's pre-fall 2017 collection, it's continued to thrive, albeit morphing into different sizes, prints, and styles. Brands have since developed convertible shoulder-to-belt bags in an effort to stay attractive.

Whether you sling it over your shoulder or strap it around your waist, the goal is the same: the never-ending pursuit of style happiness.

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