Handbag Basics


Reasonably speaking, when finding a designer handbag there are some basics you should be mindful of, however be aware that a majority of these things are tied to your own personal preference.  That does not mean that one is better than the other.

Fashion always starts with the accessory you wear and the biggest accessory is the Bag (also referred as a handbag, purse or tote). For men, it is the shoes and belt. But in addition to looking good, you need the bag to be an attractive addition to your outfit. Below are some details and basic ideas will guide you in finding the bag that is perfect for your lifestyle and budget.

Handbag Types

Three primary handbag types are: tote, clutch and satchel.

A Satchel is a larger sized purse that transport everything in your hearts desire. Most have a lot of space for books, a notebook pc, telephone, set of clothes and small everyday accessories. A Satchel normally has long straps that you can put over your shoulders. Satchels are also called Hobos and are great travel bags.  Balenciaga has a line of oversized handbags called the Le Dix Motorcycle Bag that falls into this category.

A Clutch is a small purse that you can hold in the palm your hand and has just enough space to only hold your important essentials that you carry everyday – it is also called a coin purse, depending on its size, also an evening purse. Some clutches are designed with straps, but most have pockets arranged for effectively holding your cell phone, credit cards and change. Clutch purses are great evening and going out on the town type bags.

A Tote are are medium sized handbag.  This is what the majority of women carry because of the basic features and compact stature. They have room for most of your goods plus a few extras. They are not bulky and it is the best type of bag to get if you want an everyday bag.

Handbag Bits and Pieces

There are two main types of materials used in producing handbags - leathers and fabrics. Its always good to have one leather and one cloth or fabric bag because one may look better with one outfit than the other. And what you want depends on your preference of style. Just remember that leather handbags more durable, but may need extra care and cost more than fabric handbags. Genuine leather will preserve its original texture and will get softer over time with wear. Top grain leather is from the top layer of a hide, which can be just as good as full grain leather. Suede is a lower quality of leather, mainly because it is treated, that is why it has a rough texture compared to genuine leather or top grain. No matter if it is ‘genuine leather’, top grain or - - suede- - these styles are still some of the best to consider - it is a matter of ‘taste’ when choosing your style. The bag pictured has leather trim accents and made of fabric - Coach Signature Stripe. There are a combination of styles.

Purpose of the Handbag

When it comes to purpose, it is all about how you will use your handbag - other than defense, but what event. Now a days most handbags have a cell phone pocket, although you may not have that feature in a clutch handbag. If you do not have a wallet, consider a handbag that has dividers for your knick knacks, credit cards, pictures and other essentials like a calculator. Another feature to consider is the length of the straps and handles. There are adjustable and detachable straps or handles - if you live in a cold climate, this is something to consider because once you put a coat on, you will need a longer strap to make up for the bulk of the coat.  Also depends on how you want to wear the bag - from the hip or as a shoulder bag.

Designer Handbag Basics
If you want the latest trendy styles, then you might want to consider the brand or designer name of handbag. Although you pay more for some designers than others, depending on the style, you may have a longer lasting impression. Designer handbags are made by world renowned clothing designers. Some focus on just clothes, but some design specific accessories, like shoes or handbags. They are not just trendsetters, but stylish accessories made from quality materials.  A lot of these top designers are famous and because of their popularity, there are many replica handbag makers.  Ensure your bag comes with a record of authenticity and a serial number so that you know it is the real deal.  You will want to register the product once you have purchased your famous handbag.  Handbags such as Dooney-Bourke and Coach have serial numbers imprinted on them. These handbags when purchased from their respective stores come with a dust bag and optional cleaner.
Handbag Cleaning
Ensuring that your handbag last a long time depends on the care and maintenance that you give it. Most handbags can be cleaned with a wet cloth. But, If your cleaning a leather bag, use leather cleaner from the appropriate brand of handbag.  Some shoe - suede - and leather cleaners can also clean the handbag of deeper stains.  If you are unsure on how to clean your handbag, some handbag manufacturers have recommended cleaning solutions and products - you should use those only as designated. They most always guarantee that the handbag will not tarnish or fade when using their cleaners. If you decide to take your handbag to the cleaners, make sure they will guarantee that it will not get damaged or discolored. If it is under a warranty and it is cleaned at a dry cleaners, the designer may not replace it for you. A well cared for handbag will last a life time and become a great addition to any vintage handbag collection.