Carry On: The Best Crossbody Bags for Under $200
Supermodels: they’re just like us. They need their hands free for their adorable babies and they love their bags. Alessandra Ambrosio was spotted wearing the MICHAEL Michael Kors Selma mini and her fellow model Miranda Kerr happens to have one, too. But fear not, mere mortals, because you can have one, too. The popular purse is one of our picks for the upcoming season and surprise, it won’t empty your wallet. Neither will a the other bags we’ve found, which all ring in at under $200. And let’s get it straight, we’re talking real leather bags, real big-name designers and designs you’ll be proud to carry. So consolidate your tote and slim down what you’re carrying in your satchel. Start 2014 off right with a new bag and a lighter load.
If you’re about classics and timeless design, you can still give your bag rotation a jolt of fresh energy. Maybe you’re saving up with something from a big name brand or maybe you just want to get the look of something from a big name brand. The Rebecca Minkoff Affair Mini Convertible Crossbody Bag ($195) is reminiscent of a certain Parisian label that’s coveted all over the world, but with a price tag that’s much more manageable than something in the quadruple-digit range. Just like that brand, the Affair Mini features a convertible chain that you can wear short or long and rich, pebbled leather that’ll take a beating and look all the better for it. It’s not a huge bag, but it does make a huge difference when you need two hands for bargain hunting and seasonal coffee beverages. And while those coffee drinks might be seasonal, you’ll be able to wear this classic bag no matter the season.
A neon yellow crossbody looks cute on Alessandra Ambrosio — but let’s face it, what wouldn’t look cute on her? But we think that a more neutral take would be a little more versatile and give you a bag you can wear all year long. While basic black and rich brown are always great choices, a more unexpected neutral would be blush, and the MICHAEL Michael Kors Crossbody Mini Selma ($178) is available in a darling blush hue that’ll pair with anything in your winter wardrobe and your spring and summer staples, too. The Mini Selma leaves your hands free for fedora-wearing babies (or whatever else you happen to be carrying) and unlike some other crossbody bags, it still maintains its tailored shape and sharp structure thanks to hardy saffiano leather. It’s deceptively roomy, too, so toss in your wallet, phone and keys along with a few extras, because like a modern day Mary Poppins, you never know what you’ll need at a moment’s notice.
Available at Bloomingdale’s.
2014 marks the 40th anniversary of Diane von Furstenberg’s famed wrap dress (though it doesn’t look a day over 20, right?).
If you’re in the market for a bigger, bolder bag, grab for the Marc by Marc Jacobs Satchel – Too Hot To Handle Small Top Handle ($179.76). It’s got a bold, bright color as well as a bigger size than any of the other bags we’ve featured. The gleaming gold hardware is perfect to play against the berry hue and it’s roomy enough for an iPad mini and your phone, wallet and lipstick. Carry it by the top handle if you’re feeling particularly grown up — ladies who lunch don’t ever use crossbody straps — or sling it across your body if you’re rushing to catch the train or wrangling kids, puppies or just your everyday necessities. It’s also available in a deep green hue that’s the perfect color to pair with winter’s chunky knits and statement coats, but no matter what you choose, you’ll be set with this satchel.
Available at Bloomingdale’s.
Model behavior dictates that we see the bag before we notice the rest of the outfit, a la Alessandra, Cara and their ilk, but if you need something to fade into the background so that your shoes, your digital photo-print dress or your statement necklace take center stage, carry the Kate Spade New York Cobble Hill Little Curtis Leather Crossbody Bag ($186.26). We’re not saying it’s a dull decision, but it is just a little more sedate than the bright pops of color we’ve chosen above. This soft leather bag is comfortable to carry, holds a ton of stuff and has the perfect combo of structure and slouch whether you carry it in the crook of your elbow or across your body. Practical doesn’t have to be plain, because the Little Curtis is full of organizational pockets so you’ll be able to find everything inside in no time at all, making it the perfect partner for ladies on the go.