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2013 New Wave of Status Bags

Handbags in a store in Florence, Italy. Since the middle ages, Florence has been known for its fine leatherwork.

The past couple of years was indeed the era of status shoes, I’ve seen so many style innovation on shoes than ever before but this year –I think– 2013 was the return of Status Bags (or “it bags” as they were known in those heady, pre-recession days). Although more understated and sedate than their blinged-out early aught’s counterparts, they share the same marks of exclusivity —i.e. a celebrity fan base, a waiting list, and a price tag that rivals that of a used Toyota Tercel. Curious to meet these new kings of the retail jungle? Below is the round up of the new wave of status bags.

rihanna with chloe baylee bag

The Bag: Chloe Baylee ($2250)

The Scoop: Any bag that includes a detachable chain you can wear as a bracelet is aces in our book. Although Creative Director Clare Waight Keller describes the tote as “simple” and “chic”, there’s still plenty details to catch the eye, including the two-tone body and sturdy gold hardware.

Celebrity Fans: Rihanna (pictured), Kate Bosworth, January Jones.

Available In: Sizes medium and small; smooth calfskin, perforated leather, ostrich. For full range of color options, see website.

gwen steffani with stella mccartney beckett

The Bag: Stella McCartney Beckett ($1230)

The Scoop: At last, global-warming activists have a designer handbag in step with their politics. McCartney developed a new material, Eco Faux Leather, which uses vegetable oil instead of petroleum oil for the new design, which bowed this season. And, as with all Stella McCartney designs, the bag is free of animal products (i.e. leather) so it’s a win for vegans and PETA supporters, too.

Celebrity Fans: Gwen Stefani (pictured), Gwyneth Paltrow, Anne Hathaway, Selma Hayek.

Available In: Sizes large and small; envelope clutch, shoulder bag, and shopper bag versions. See website for range of color options.

jessica alba in kenzo kalifornia

The Bag: Kenzo Kalifornia ($1190)

rosie huntington-whitely with Givenchy Antigona

The Bag: Givenchy Antigona ($2125)

The Scoop: Unlike the other bags on this list, the Antigona didn’t make its debut this year and it is actually part of my “Fashion Bloggers It Bags” last year. Still, as a constant on the wrists of every A-lister from Beyonce to Madonna, we’d be remiss not to include the sleek and structured tote.

Celebrity Fans: Rosie Huntington-Whitely (pictured), Charlize Theron, Sharon Stone.

Available In: Sizes medium and small; satchel and large shopper. See website for full range of colors and materials.

miranda kerr with Louis Vuitton Vivienne

The Bag: Louis Vuitton Vivienne Bag ($4150)

The Scoop: Louis Vuitton’s newest bag is a versatile little number that’s consists of several organizational compartments and can be worn over the shoulder or on the arm. It also comes in a logo-free version for those who’d prefer to fly under the designer radar. Unfortunately, just like any other “status bags” it is already sold out online and probably you’re already in it’s waiting list.

Celebrity Fans: Miranda Kerr (pictured), Alexa Chung, Emma Watson.

Available In: Satchel, long wallet, compact wallet, and with charm handle. For full range of colors, see website.

kate moss with Saint Laurent Sac de Jour

The Bag: Saint Laurent Sac de Jour ($2550)

The Scoop: Though it bears a faint resemblance to a certain Hermes classic, Saint Laurent’s Sac de Jour (or “bag of the day”) is the anti-It bag with its discreet logo and minimalist details. Designed by Hedi Slimane, the bag debuted this fall but will be part of Saint Laurent’s permanent collection. (Good news for those who need some time to save up.)

Celebrity Fans: Kate Moss (pictured), Cameron Diaz, Angelina Jolie, Nicole Richie, Jessica Biel, Reese Witherspoon.

Available In: Sizes small and large; red, black, navy blue, royal blue, and powder.

sarah jessica parker with Coach Borough

The Bag: Coach Borough ($548)

The Scoop: Inspired by New York’s five boroughs, the bag was a hit practically as soon as it hit shelves this fall thanks to its sleek design and accessible price tag.

Celebrity Fans: Sarah Jessica Parker (pictured), Lea Michele, Freida Pinto, Karlie Kloss, Drew Barrymore, Poppy Delevingne.

Available In: Sizes large, medium, and mini; retro, polished calfskin, and pebbled leather finishes. For full range of color options, see website.

alexa chung with Chanel No.5 Plexiglass Evening Bag

The Bag: Chanel No.5 Plexiglass Evening Bag ($9500)

The Scoop: Introduced with the label’s the Resort 14 collection, the clear, plexiglass bag takes its design cues from the label’s most iconic fragrance bottle. “I never thought to use the No.5 bottle for handbags,” explained designer Karl Lagerfeld to “I think it’s cute.” If you have almost 10 grand to spare, you could have this bag but it is only available in-store… for now.

Celebrity Fans: Alexa Chung (pictured), Miroslava Duma.

Available In: Clear and black.

Do you like the new wave of status bags?

  • I like the Coach bag out of the ones featured. I still crave the old-school bags like the Birkin, Lady Dior, Gucci Bardot or Jackie bag. Someday……….