Choosing a Handbag You’ll Love Forever

Instead of picking up a fab little handbag featuring the season’s hottest trends (ruffles and studs, anyone?), why not invest that cash into something spectacular you’ll love forever? Use these five quick tips to help you shop for a classic bag that’s anything but boring:

Consider scale. If you’re a petite woman, you may get lost behind a behemoth of a handbag (a la the Olsen twins) – and conversely, if you’re a tall, curvy woman, like the beautiful Beyonce, a tiny clutch may not make quite the statement you’d like. So, choose a handbag that works with the size and shape of your frame, without over (or under)whelming it.  
Examine the shape. To get a handbag you’ll love forever, it should boast a shape that complements yours – so shop with this mantra in mind: The rounder the figure, the more structured the bag. » Shop handbags by style and shape  
Check the seams. Look for strong, consistent seams that travel in straight lines and have no loose threads.
Put hardware to the test. Open and close the bag several times. Does the zipper stick? Do the snaps feel overly tight? Are the buckles hard to work? If so, keep shopping – because those little problems will only get worse over time.
Avoid ornamentation. Uber-trendy elements might look great now, but what about next season? Instead, think classic, but not boring, and go for high-quality leather handbags, instead. You can always accessorize your look with funky jewelry, colorful shoes or a stand-out scarf. 

Need a few faves to think about? Our top handbag picks for this season (and any season) include this amazing American Glamour Badgley Mischka Leather Flap Satchel and this too-chic-to-be-true Chi by Falchi Italian Lambskin Wallet with Snakeskin Trim, which doubles gorgeously as a clutch.

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