Style

What to Wear to Designer Preview, Part II: The Handbag

With just over two weeks to go before Designer Preview on July 28 in Seattle, we’re all getting pretty serious about that question hanging in the air: “What should we wear?” After visiting with SPACE ambassador Shawn Serven last week at our Seattle flagship, the ready-to-wear part of the equation is likely shaping up quite nicely.

But what to do about the crucial handbag element?

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All about the embroidery embellishment: Gucci on-point

We recently revisited Shawn for a trip through the designer handbag offerings, where it became clear that there are three major trends to consider: color, size and embellishment.

COLOR

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For a certain fashion follower, the proverbial pop of color is just too delicious to resist. If you’re the type who feels most chic in a little black dress, you might consider a bright beauty like this Gucci clutch as a way of kicking up the wow factor. But bold colors aren’t just for neutrals; we’d love to see this neoclassic compact carryall paired with a modern floral print, or really any contrasting shade.

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Then again, fall’s got some real biker-babe/goth-chick moments in store, making an all-black everything situation feel like a very cool move.

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This ultra-refined tone-on-tone Chloé bag (above) is a Nordstrom exclusive, and the Saint Laurent fringe number (below) is a little bit country, a little bit rock ‘n’ roll. Pair it with some exaggerated wide-leg trousers and a sumptuous hippie blouse, maybe?

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SIZE

Designers have been making a really big deal out of minis lately, and so have all the street-style favorites. Fendi‘s all about the bag-on-bag look, and their collection of smalls and really smalls (below) make a very good case (ha!) for paring down your essentials.

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A bag needn’t be overtly miniature to qualify as a perfect evening-out companion, though. What we love about Designer Preview is that it’s a chance to wear your very best without conforming to strict “black tie” guidelines, or the somewhat confusing “cocktail attire.”

In other words (if we haven’t made it obvious yet), you can feel free to disregard previous notions about evening bags and embrace a crossbody—like this pint-sized textured one from Saint Laurent (below).

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EMBELLISHMENTS

The very word—embellish—just sounds special. And as designers pile on embroidery patchwork, colorful hardware, and collage-like groupings of pins and patches, what emerges is pretty spectacular.

From (top to bottom, below) Gucci‘s retro-prep brillance and Fendi‘s futuristic rainbow to Chloé‘s artisan patchwork and Saint Laurent‘s cool-girl mini bucket (with tassel!), it’s a more-is-more world.

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DISCOVER: All designer collections