Wardrobe Essentials: 5 Types of Designer Bags Every Woman Needs

Is yesterday’s It bag still sitting in your bag closet in pristine yet untouched condition? If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Knowing how to build your capsule wardrobe of designer handbags can be tricky, especially since it’s a question of accessories. But a great bag – when chosen wisely – can last through the seasons as a wardrobe staple. The right investment can save time and money while helping you to make more sustainable choices.

But how do you decide which bag you should invest in? To help lighten your load, we’ve picked out 5 types of designer bags that will carry you through every season.

The Roomy Tote

Nothing beats the tote when it comes to the ultimate work carry-all and everyday bag. For those of us who need to cart around our entire beauty drawer, a spare cardigan, water bottle, and other essentials – you know, just in case you’ll need them – a spacious yet sturdy tote can be a real lifesaver.

Prada Medium Saffiano Lux Galleria Double Zip Tote Black

Prada’s solidly built yet roomy tote bag has been crafted in the house’s textured saffiano leather, which is known to last for a long time. Its classic black hue makes it ideal for any work occasion, while gold-plated hardware lends the bag a touch of luxe.

Louis Vuitton Damier Ebene Hampstead MM

Now discontinued, this roomy Louis Vuitton tote continues to be a firm classic – thanks to its iconic Damier checkered leather canvas. If you need extra space, the sides of the bag are expandable with snap buttons, and its compartment comes with three side pockets for your keys and lipstick.

Balenciaga Bazar Tokyo Shopper S

This vibrant graphic tote is a luxe step-up from your market shopping bag while retaining all of the latter’s functionality and practicality. Crafted in crinkled lambskin leather, its interior contains three pockets to keep your smaller items in place.

The Shoulder Bag

More petite than a tote, a shoulder bag is essential for day-to-day wear and is lighter and less cumbersome to lug around. Ideally, the best shoulder bags should carry you from workday to party night. Plus, they’re hands-free without disrupting your outfit like the strap of a crossbody bag. Simply put, the shoulder bag is practical yet sexy.

Chanel Medium Gabrielle Hobo Bag Black

If we’re talking about sexy, look no further than this slightly slouchy silhouette in calfskin leather. The style of the Chanel Medium Gabrielle bag transcends fashion trends with its timeless appeal.

Gucci Small Sylvie Bag

Instantly recognisable, the boxy signature Gucci shape has been revived from the house’s ’60s archives in a modern iteration. With its military-inspired hardware, the Gucci Sylvie bag is feminine yet refined, perfect for on-the-go meetings and dinner dates after that.

Prada Nappa Stripes Hobo Bag

Ideal for work and play, this slouchy Prada bag often comes in rainbow patchwork stripes, but we love this soft pink hue that’s subtle and chic – yet still fun! Tuck this bag under your shoulder for long work lunches on weekdays and casual brunch on the weekend.

The Hands-Free Crossbody Bag

Arguably the most versatile bag for our daily on-the-go lives, the crossbody bag is fit for every occasion. Whether you’re returning to your work commute or travelling again, it’s easy to sling your crossbody bag over your shoulder as a hands-free way to store all your essentials. 

Our hot tip? Look out for crossbody bags with detachable straps and top handles so you can style the bag differently for every outfit.

Saint Laurent Small Loulou Puffer Bag

Beautifully crafted in lambskin leather, you can’t go wrong with this versatile shade of nude, which would easily pair the Saint Laurent Loulou bag with any outfit. Meanwhile, its signature quilted pattern adds just the right amount of eye-catching detail.

Gucci GG Supreme Small Padlock Bag

This flashy leather Gucci bag is the perfect combination of style and hands-free convenience – proof that you don’t have to sacrifice one for the other. The gold accents would add a chic yet surprising touch to any outfit – whether it’s a monochrome work outfit or a breezy floral dress on your off days.

Burberry Haymarket Check Crossbody Rust Red

No matter the season, structured crossbody bags are always in style, like this equestrian-inspired bag in Burberry’s trademark check canvas. Chic and compact, its interior has five card slots – ideal for securing all your daily staples. 

The Chic Top Handle Bag

Whether you’re in a tailored work blazer or jeans and a white T-shirt, there’s nothing like a modern top handle bag to pull your look together. Unlike the tote or the shoulder bag, a sleek top handle bag adds instant polish to any outfit. Over the years, this structured silhouette has never gone out of style as countless designers continue to return to it, with modern iterations putting a twist on the ladylike top handle.

Celine Trapeze Small Tricolour Navy Orange

In the past decade, Céline by Phoebe Philo has dominated the modern woman’s wardrobe. The stylish yet minimalistic Trapeze bag, for one, was seen dangling from every other wrist at fashion week. Featured here in a limited edition colourway, the Trapeze bag would make for the perfect everyday bag or travel companion.

Balenciaga Classic City S Dark Grey

For those initiated into the beloved cult of the designer handbag in the 2000s, the Balenciaga City bag is often their first love. Unlike the other It bags of the era, the chameleonic appeal of this bag has endured. It’s tough yet chic and designed to be schlepped around town for all purposes.

Gucci GG Marmont Mini Top Handle Bag

Nothing beats a simple yet chic top handle bag for your everyday activities. This mini GG Marmont top handle bag has a softly structured shape with quilting details all over. And not to mention the recognisable double G hardware on its oversized flap closure – making this an impressive statement on any arm.

The Evening Clutch

An evening bag is always a good investment to have in your closet, especially when your calendar is packed with formal dinners and weddings galore. But an evening clutch or bag doesn’t have to be restricted to the festive season too. As the lines between day and evening wear continue to blur on and off the runway, a sequinned clutch can also instantly elevate your outfit. More bang for your buck, we say.

Saint Laurent Classic Monogram Lipstick Red

It’s all in the name. This simple Saint Laurent clutch oozes classic appeal in a bold shade of lipstick red. Compact enough to fit in your grasp, you could easily hit the town on a weekday with this as part of the micro-bag trend or opt to glam it up on a fancy dinner date.

Bottega Veneta Intrecciato Stretch Knot Clutch

The Pouch bag by Bottega Veneta’s innovative Daniel Lee is proof that It bags are not dead. With its weaving details, this Pouch bag is definitely no slouch in the clutch department. Tuck it under your arm while you’re on the move, or wear it as an understated evening accessory.

Saint Laurent Clutch Chyc Black Glitter

If you’ve got a wedding or two to attend but aren’t sure what the dress code might be, this black Saint Laurent clutch will do the trick. Its delicate lambskin leather is the definition of luxury, while its timeless simplicity will take you from day to night.

Got your eye on one of the timeless pieces above? Try before you buy from our Infinite Wardrobe with over 2,000+ designer bags, with plans starting at SGD $99/mth. Our wide variety of styles lets you test out the bag you’re crushing on so you can be sure it’s worth the investment before committing to it. This way, you can explore if your dream bag fits in with your wardrobe and lifestyle so you can make smarter and more sustainable choices.

About Author

As an overly ambitious Slytherin, Nabila is very much obsessed with being immortal, or more so being remembered when she’s... you know… On rare sightings, you can catch her lounging in her PJs binge-watching Netflix, but more often than not, she’s running around in heels trying to cross off whatever is on her to-dos that day. Her fashion philosophy? You are what you wear, so wear something nice!

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