November 2013


10 Reasons Everyone Should Own a Celine Handbag

1. The Celine Luggage Tote changed the handbag game
So many bags at virtually every price point mirror the Luggage Tote’s shape, proportion and flared gussets that we’ve done not one but two roundups to demonstrate the enduring trend. The Luggage’s success also set the stage for the Trapeze and Trio bags to proliferate their details out across the industry, so much so that it’s rare to find a designer bag that’s been produced in the past year that hasn’t been influenced in some small (or not-so-small) way by Celine’s ultra-covetable collections. Personally, we like the idea of owning the original if you choose to own anything.

2. Phoebe Philo is an accessories genius
Phoebe Philo, Celine’s creative director, also oversaw the creation of the Chloe Paddington and Silverado Bags in her time at Chloe. Having that much success in bags is not just a happy accident; Philo’s prowess took Celine from an nearly moribund afterthought to a perennial industry frontrunner almost overnight. If you’re going to entrust thousands of your dollars to someone’s good taste, she’s about as solid a choice as you’ll find.

3. Celine bags are like a fashion Bat Signal
Celine bags have been an industry favorite since more or less the moment that LVMH brought on Phoebe Philo. Although the incredibly wide popularity of the Luggage Tote has diluted its fashionable message a bit (as happens when any bag reaches such an enormous audience, even the Birkin), a carefully chosen Celine accessory can say on your behalf what never sounds convincing when said aloud: that you’ve got razor-sharp taste and know exactly where the fashion conversation is headed. Game recognize game.

4. A Celine bag’s details are always interesting
I remember the first time I spotted the matte grey Celine Phantom Luggage tote with neon orange edging. I was walking down Madison Avenue in the Upper East Side and did a double-take at the woman walking past me with it on her arm. I had seen the Phantom a million times, of course, but leave it to Phoebe Philo to use something as overlooked as edge-painting to make sure the bag continues to turn heads.

5. Not all Celine bags are super ubiquitous
I can totally understand not wanting to carry a bag that you feel like everyone else already has, but Celine’s line goes so far beyond the Luggage and Trapeze bags. Even the Classic Box Bag, which has been around for as long as the Luggage, is still devastatingly elegant and somewhat under-appreciated, not to mention bags like the Edge, the All Soft and Celine’s various clutches and pouches.

6. No logo print, no logo hardware, ever
As LVMH, Celine’s parent company, has recently realized, obvious logos have become something of a fashion liability. The most sophisticated (read: high-spending) consumers are tired of them and they no longer feel fresh. Celine doesn’t currently produce any kind of logo or monogram fabric, and its minimalist, full-name logo doesn’t lend itself to logo-shaped hardware. You find “Celine” in a tiny, metallic heat stamp on most of the brand’s bags and stamped into the Trapeze’s front clasp, but that’s it. Especially in the less-popular styles, Celine bags are about as discreet as they can be.

7. Celine’s industry leadership shows no signs of slowing
Celine is in high favor with fashion tastemakers, from editors to VIP customers. Despite the runway bags being a tad weird and conceptual, Celine’s Spring 2014 show left critics salivating and sales continue briskly. The industry’s most influential people are in love with Celine, and they know what they’re talking about. The love affair shall continue apace for the foreseeable future.

8. Even the Luggage Tote is still a total stunner
I thought I had seen and processed my thoughts on every Luggage Tote imaginable in the years since its debut, but this past weekend, I walked past a woman in my neighborhood carrying the Luggage Tote in box calf leather, the same as is used for the Classic Box Bags. The leather is glossy and extremely fine-grained because of the particular tanning process that’s used for the material, and it is gorgeous. Those Luggage Totes aren’t common and are much more expensive than their regular drummed leather counterparts, but the box leather gave the Luggage Tote a whole new life in my eyes.

9. Celine bags are wardrobe-elevators
Because of the status and taste-level that a wisely chosen Celine bag can telegraph to those around you, the bag can often have the effect of making everything that’s worn with it look more purposeful, more considered and almost infinitely more tasteful. A slouchy tank and a pair of tapered sweatpants look like a full-on outfit when a Celine bag is present, and that is nothing short of magic.

10. Seriously, have you seen the interior of a Celine Classic Box Bag?
The mark of an impressive fashion brand isn’t in its exteriors. Instead, the brand’s attention to quality and detail are the most apparently once you open up a bag and inspect what’s going on inside. That’s where corners are cut, expensive materials are preserved and flaws are at their most apparent. When I first opened up a Celine Classic Box Bag, I couldn’t believe what was going on inside – it was nicer than the exterior. The leather, and there was a ton of it, was totally soft and luxurious. The heavily partition interior was split up with a lot of attention to detail. The bag’s $4,000+ price tag suddenly made a lot of sense. If that’s not a reason to buy, I don’t know what is.

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Prada Mini Bags Collection

If you love your leather bags small, colourful and adorable, then you will most definitely love the new Prada Mini Bags collection which is quite literally being a kid in the candy store. Measuring around 20 cm by 15 cm depending on which specific style you finally decide on, each of them is also pretty functional in spite of its size; they all come with a zip pocket on the inside as well as a detachable shoulder sling that will come in useful whenever you need to be handsfree.


Like I said earlier, expect to be spoilt for choice with at least 6 different styles in all the same colours you’ll find in a rainbow, and then some. Then there are those that come embellished with studs and grommets to those that come colour blocked; I don’t envy those who have to decide on just one.


And no, we are not nearly done yet. For those wanting a Mini Bag that’s a tad more square, Prada has got you covered as well. Measuring 18 cm by 16 cm, it also comes in countless hues and colour combinations. You know the drill; head on down (you’ll find Prada at ION Orchard, Marina Bay Sands and Paragon in Singapore), pick one up and send me a snap.

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Coach Mini Borough

One of the stars of #CoachNewYorkStories and a bag you’ll be seeing a lot of in the coming weeks, the Coach Borough is a new addition to the family that’s big on sumptuous leather and understated silhouette. Available in 3 sizes in pebbled leather or polished calfskin in a variety of delicious Fall hues (think Alpine Moss, Black, Oxblood and Teal for starters), today’s post focuses on the tiniest of the trio, the Mini Borough.

Measuring 25 cm across by 18 cm, it might be small but it’s certainly well laid out on the inside, a trio of gold zips opening to reveal 3 separate compartments, one in front that comes with 2 card pockets, a middle compartment and a back compartment that comes with patch pockets, roomy enough for all manner of smart phones and other bits. Lined with silky soft satin on the interior, she’s no less smooth on the outside, with rolled leather handles, long leather zip pulls and a thin leather sling that can be used with the bag, or detached if it so pleases you.

Priced from SGD795 and up, the Borough family of bags should be hitting Coach stores in Singapore in mid-November, and for those looking for something a little larger for work, be sure to check out the Borough and the Large Borough which is big enough to fit a laptop and then some.

Stylish, well-made and still affordable. If this is what the new Coach is all about, then I’m all for it.

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The Bags of Celine Spring 2014

First, as with all posts covering Celine handbags lookbooks, a caveat: the brand refers to the season that most of fashion calls “resort” as “spring” and the season that most of fashion calls “spring” as “summer. So, what you see here are technically Celine Spring 2014 Handbags, but they’re from the brand’s resort collection, in the larger scheme of things. (Meaning that they’ll be available sooner, so – yay.) If you’ve been a Celine fan or handbag lover in general for the past few seasons, you probably know what to expect.

The collection includes tons of Celine’s hits in new color combinations and leathers, including new Luggage Totes, Trapeze Bags and Cabas Totes of both the bicolored and zipper-gusseted varieties. Also available are new versions of what Celine is calling the Celine Tie Tote, which was new for Winter 2013 and plays on the wide-gusseted structure of the Luggage Tote, but with (you guessed it) a knotted handle attachment. For winter, the bags where shown with their top flap closures exposed, but in these product images, they’re tucked in. The bag is much, much more attractive for that styling decision – what looked so overwrought last time we discussed it now looks substantially more refined.

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Get Spring 2014′s Biggest Bag Trend Right Now with These 15 Pale Bags

If you followed along with your Spring 2014 runway roundups, you already know what I’m about to say. Pale bags, ranging from ivory to blush, are the biggest trend going for spring by far. After what feels like season upon season of prints, neons, rococo embellishments and exotics, a simple swath of dove grey leather actually does feel pretty fresh, if perhaps a little tricky to keep clean under non-ideal circumstances. (Put away your denim, lest you turn the back side of your new bag entirely blue.)

Because fashion is slowly kicking and screaming its way into the instant-gratification machine we all wish it were, the bags that rode the runway aren’t going to be available for months, but we’ve found plenty of current options to keep you looking ladylike through the winter months. Speaking of which, the more traditional among you might feel like this isn’t a cold-weather trend, but au contraire – shades like ivory and blush are all over this season’s most covetable outwear, and as long as the tone of the color and the material are sufficiently autumnal, you should feel free to wear colors like pink and white year-round. White linen? No. White leather? Pile it on.

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