It Bags

Winter ’14 handbag must-haves.


Whether you’re looking for boho chic or tongue in cheek, this season’s trends range in style, silhouette and function.

Bag by Anteprima, image courtesy of WGSN

SCHOOL GIRL: Backpacks are… well… back, and you don’t have to be a student to carry one. While silhouettes are smaller than your typical knapsack, it’s also not the mini backpack you remember from the ’90s. Backpacks can be found in various fabrications for wherever you want to carry them: try an active-influenced sling in a nylon fabric for a stylish way to hit the yoga studio, or high-fashion quilted leather for a more upscale look. And if you can’t commit, convertible backpacks (those that can be either worn on the back or converted into a satchel) are trending too.

FESTIVAL FRINGE: Music festivals like Coachella have been a big source of fashion inspiration as of late. New York-based forecasting firm The Doneger Group has coined the trend “Frontier,” calling out festival-influenced saddlebags, pouches and anything with fringe. Fashion Snoops’ Laura Miller describes the trend as bohemian mixed with tribal influences. “We saw it on the runways from brands like Ralph Lauren, Tory Burch and Etro,” she adds.

Street style image courtesy of WGSN

BUCKET LIST: The drawstring bucket bag is reemerging for fall, making an important impact on the runways. “This is a nod to the ’70s trend, which is in full swing with a cleaned-up ‘mom’ look,” explains Jacqui Ma of trend-forecasting firm WGSN. Size doesn’t matter here either: go for a big “black hole” bucket or a smaller drawstring style.

SHOW US WHAT YA GOT: “Transparent materials continue to be strong, as people like to expose the inner contents of their bags,” explains Ma. This style leaves nothing to the imagination, so make sure to put the items you might not want to show the world inside a cosmetic case!

Bag by Anya Hindmarch, image courtesy of WGSN

PATTERN & PRINT: “The trend toward print and pattern on luxury bags has been led by Chanel. Painterly effects and hand-drawn styles add a new artist-casual feel to bags,” says Ma. Fashion Snoops’ Miller echoes this sentiment, noting that “billboard” bags featuring iconic graphics or even Fortune 500 company logos are trending on portfolio bags and totes.