3 Savvy Tips for Buying a Luxury Handbag

Buying a designer bag can be an emotional experience, from the thrill and excitement of the purchase to the stress of the price. Let these three tips help guide you in your search for a high-end handbag that you'll love and use for a lifetime.

Luxury cross body designer handbag.

The time has come. Perhaps, you have been carefully saving any extra cash for the past year. Or maybe a loved one has surprised you this holiday with a generous gift card. Regardless of the scenario, you finally have the funds to purchase a new luxury handbag. So … now what do you do?!

Choosing a luxury handbag can be one of the most exciting and memorable experiences – a big first for many of us! Investing in a piece that you will have for the rest of your life (and can hand down to your little girl) can make you feel like a queen, inside and out. But, when the time comes to walk into your store of choice and make this both fashionable and financial decision, it can be scary, nerve-wracking, and overwhelming. With so many amazing brands, styles, materials, and colors, it can feel like you are being set up to make the wrong decision. And, let’s be honest – there is nothing worse than getting home, opening your shopping bag, and feeling like you made a panicked choice (especially when most high-end designers don’t accept returns). So, as a means to lessen your shopping jitters, I have compiled a few essential tips to keep in mind before you hand over your AMEX. After reading through these pointers, developed from my personal experiences, you’ll learn how to choose the one essential piece every handbag collection needs: the clutch.

Blonde woman on bench with luxury bag.
Designer bags, ysl
ysl high-end handbag

Buy for YOUR Brand

In so many of the pieces I have written, I have emphasized the importance of knowing your individual style. And in the circumstance of choosing a luxury designer bag, you must stay true to your distinct style soul. That’s why going shopping with friends can be dangerous, as its inevitable your tastes will have some sort of variance. So, choose a designer that aligns with your “brand.” Classic and Conservative? Try Chanel, Celine, and Dior. A little dark and edgy? I love Givenchy, Saint Laurent, and Balenciaga. A little bit of both? Have a look in Louis Vuitton, Prada, and Gucci. Know who you are before you start this process. Even if it’s the designer of the moment or the bag all your friends have, eliminate the brands that don’t fit with your everyday style.

Alexander McQueen luxury bag.
While designer bags may stand out on a shelf because they are distinctive, it doesn't mean they are practical.

Fun, but Functional

I remember I came home with this super eclectic, bright, and bold Prada bag one day. I was so excited about it; it was my first piece from that brand, and it was a head-turning, show-stopping knockout. But, when I proudly showed my husband, he sweetly looked at me as if not to crush my heart and said: “where are you going to wear that?” Ugh. He was right. I had purchased an “exotic” – an original, one-time release bag that I would probably wear … one time. The lesson I learned here was that while designer bags may stand out on a shelf because they are distinctive, it doesn’t mean they are practical. Choose a bag that you can wear at any point in the day – to your child’s school play AND your charity’s luncheon AND on a date night with your man. That may mean staying with a solid color or smart shape, but it doesn’t mean it’s not special. It means you will use it!

Bright handbags winter fashion tips and tricks
Blue, luxury handbag
Yellow Mark Jacobs designer bag.

Rise to Your Location

Where you live can have an impact on so many parts of your wardrobe, and your new bag will be one of them. Cold-weathered locations will bring on darker, neutral colors, particularly in fall and winter. If you’re continually dealing with snow and sleet, a white or light-colored bag just doesn’t make sense. And while black or brown may feel like a seasonal (cold weather) pick, they are both colors that can totally be worn throughout every season. The same goes for a Floridian. With shorts and sandals basically being year-round attire, they can get away with creams, beige, even soft pastels. So, when choosing, work with where you live and keep in mind that may place some limitations on an all-season bag.

I hope these tips give you some courage and confidence. Whether it’s for your first or one of many designer handbags, choose wisely and independently, and you will enjoy a functional and fashionable outcome! 

Use this as a guide when buying any handbag. Or maybe you’re looking for a fun luxury piece that stands out for a special occasion. Ever had that moment when you’re about to finish your outfit, and you just can’t find the right bag? A cross body looks frumpy, a tote is too casual, and a belt bag is just out of the question. Find out how to choose this one indispensable item to be the secret weapon in your handbag collection.

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