Who will be gracing Elle’s June cover for her first major fashion mag spread? None other than Kerry Washington, who’s hit her bag groove just as perfectly as Christian Louboutin hit his with her nude accessory – the Sotto Sweet Charity! While the pale hue and bow are sugary sweet, its gunmetal hardware and black color blocked sides offer some necessary contrast. The edgy black panels are surprisingly sensible – I love nude bags, but they all seem to get scuffed at some point. This is truly intelligent design. And when it comes to shoes, of course Monsieur Louboutin has long known the right formula. Kerry’s leopard ponyhair Decolletes (at Barneys New York for $825) are sure to cause a scandal wherever they go. Good thing Olivia Pope is already on the scene! Pre-order at Neiman Marcus for $1,695.
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Gwyneth Paltrow visited the Apple Store in NYC recently to talk about her new app ‘Goop’ and carried Tom Ford Large Kidskin Natalia on her way in. The actress looked sleek, chic and smug in a Barbara Bui top and Daniele Michetti shoes. The Tom Ford Natalia bag has a large golden turnlock center with logo engraving and three inside compartments and is a smart little bag to carry you from day to night. Frequently, when I’m shopping, cooking, or just living in general, I ask myself, WWGD? Not be in 20 feet of carbs or sugar, that’s for sure, and maybe spend the afternoon picking avocados in the sun with Uncle J (Shawn Carter). Well, at least in the bag department, we have our answers. Get goopy like Gwyneth and pick up this bag at Neiman Marcus for $3980.
Each spring, a slew of bags pop up in every bright hue and print imaginable. In the midst of this madness, Valextra shows they don’t need an ounce of color to get your attention. The Tip Tap tote leaves all that behind, instead focusing on its freshly tiered and perfectly symmetrical style. Pull up the top flap to get into the belly of your bag or store small stuff in the bottom pocket. If the punk trend isn’t your cup of tea, then the horn hardware will give you a refreshing break from heavy metal. Take the bag by its half moon handle when you’re looking to add some structured sophistication to your look. I’ll admit it’s quite an investment for a white bag, but this is Valextra – it’ll last a lifetime plus if you treat the tote well. Available at Barneys New York for $4,860.
Just when I was complaining that everything out there is a big bore, a whole slew of exciting, inventive bags crop up. I’m glad someone out there was listening!
We have Reece Hudson – and their cool-luxe vision – to thank for helping me get inspired once again. Edgy and well-priced, the Siren Lady is a clear and easy addition to add some welcome spice to your mix. The definition of a not-so-basic staple, it reminds us it’s all in the details. Reminiscent of the lines in a spider web, the batwing touches at the flap are just enough for some dangerously slick panache. But they’re not so outrageous or wacky that the bag is going to feel outdated in a matter of months. Actually, that extra flap is a secondary compartment, so there’s full-on organization. Combine that with a detachable shoulder strap, and you have a perfect day-to-night companion that offers ultimate versatility. The fact that it looks like it’s worthy of a streetwise, modern-day femme fatale is just a bonus.
At Barneys New York for $825.
Pair with: A black pump with loads of swagger will round out your accessories. Manolo Blahnik’s Belta has a wraparound ankle strap that’s more like a punk-inspired belt than a dainty anklet.
At Bergdorf Goodman for $925.
If you had a hard time resisting the temptation to indulge yourself in a bag by Narciso Rodriguez before, it’s now going to be virtually impossible. The champion of timeless, minimal elegance has finally launched his e-commerce site. It’s all things Narciso, all the time! I had the pleasure of meeting one of my favorite designers last month in NYC and manhandled the sublime bag collection in person.
From the nappa-topped lizard shoulder bag ($2,195) to its seductive red variation ($1,895) to black chain-strapped top-handle ($2,395), the man shows us how it’s done. He knows when to inject a pop of color, when to leave well enough alone, and when to toy with a shape or seam. The overall effect: investments that are at once strong and subdued. Snobs who keep it polished day to night will be all over the Boomerang clutch ($795-$1,395), in dual textures (like leather and lizard) or blocked neutrals, but it’s going to be hard to narrow it down to just one bag in the basket. I can safely say my penchant for late-night shopping just got a little more frenzied!