While even some of the best designer handbag trends can go in and out of style, there are a handful of silhouettes that stand the test of time.
Think of these styles as the ultimate handbag essentials. Similar to a black blazer, white tee, or pair of blue jeans, a good handbag is just as important a staple in the wardrobe—and there’s a version for every occasion, season, and personal style.
From elevated carryalls to cult crossbodies, from the fun-sized to the functional (pretty doesn’t have to mean impractical!), here’s our guide to all of the essential handbag silhouettes and styles.
The Elevated Totes
Basic rectangle totes be gone! It’s time to invest in something just as roomy, practical, and versatile, but way less expected.
The Functional Sport
When your agenda requires something a little more casual, leave the leather behind and sling on something nylon or patent.
The Small But Mighty
Despite their small appearance, miniature bags make a big impression. After returning for multiple seasons, they’ve proven themselves to be a style with staying power rather than a fleeting trend.
The New Evening Bags
Take a break from those hard clunky box clutches, and opt for something softer and more comfortable to carry. Plus, these styles will actually fit all your night-out necessities.
The Minimalist Shoulder Bags
Elegantly designed, neutral in hue, and timeless in silhouette, the classic shoulder bag gets a chic update that you’ll want to wear every day.
The Summertime Touch
It’s always nice to have something seasonal to carry come summertime—be it woven, canvas, or colorful.
The Prim Purses
These polished day bags are for the modern woman—and will certainly make a good first impression.
The Cult Crossbodies
One of the best designer handbags to invest in is the classic crossbody; styles by Loewe, Gucci, JW Anderson, or Coach are an excellent place to start.