Snob Essentials

Bag Snob Five Essentials: Tote/Travel/Treasure/Trend/Clutch

My friend and lifestyle expert, Kimberly Schlegel Whitman, suggested I come up with the Five Essentials (The Tote, Travel, Treasure, Trend and Clutch) years ago when I shared my ideas for developing a system for a bag wardrobe. This system of 5 bags is seriously all you need for any and every occasion.  Here are my picks for the season!


TOTE-  This is your daily bag for work and play– it is the bag you’ll use every day so it is very important to get one that you really love and that reflects your lifestyle and personality.  I’m a mother of an active 5 and half year old boy so I need a tote that can fit my life and his– Bottega Veneta‘s lightweight totes with multiple compartments are perfect for my busy days!  9.4″ X 14″ $2300.00


TRAVEL– A sturdy travel bag is a must, even if your travels are merely to your parents’ house on the weekends!  I love this large organic canvas travel hobo with snap closure, short leather handle, and buffalo leather trim.  Whether you’re toting shampoo and wine or magazines and sippy cups, the linen lined interior is easy to clean in case of spillage!  It also has leather-trimmed zipper pocket plus three organizational pockets for plane tickets, passports and ID.  20″ x 20.5″ Made in Italy. $650.00


TREND – All women, no matter how classic, like to update their style every so often.  Each season or year, this is the bag you can have fun with!  This season, it’s all about being pretty in pink from baby soft shades to bright hues.  I love YSL‘s Muse II bag updated in bold fuchsia and trimmed in soft neutral camel.  $1,654.00


TREASURE – We all need a bag for special occasions; a luxe exotic is great but if you’re not into animal skins, it can be a beaded or embroidered bag.  Price is also not indicative of this category– I have a bag made of shark teeth purchased in Langkawi Malaysia that cost less than the bowl of noodles I had afterwards but it’s a treasure bag for me because it carries with it memories of that amazing trip.  Whatever it is, the treasure bag is what we keep forever (or pass on to our daughters/granddaughters!)  For some snobs, this sophisticated crocodile bag from Nancy Gonzalez with wrapped straps and pleating fits the bill.  15″W X 11″H X 6″D



CLUTCH – We can not have enough clutches!  I wear them to luncheons, dinners, cocktails and everything in between.  Derek Lam makes the best clutches, he thinks of functionality so we don’t have to (I don’t want to worry about losing my cell or credit cards when I’m sipping my martinis!).   The urban chic Albertine clutch has a soft leather flap front, rear frame compartment with push lock closure (like a little coin purse attached to your clutch!).  The sleek satin lined interior also has two small organizational pockets for your ID and credit card.  5″ x 10″ Made in Italy. $690.00



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  1. I like the canvas travel hobo – it looks like a great choice for my travel needs – but unless I’m missing something, I don’t see the manufacturer.

  2. I love the purple canvas. A bit pricey but very sturdy and stylish. I’m designing my own bag; a kind of bag n’ bag for women who leave at 8 AM and don’t come home until 8 AM and how to fit one’s life into the pocketbook (old fashioned word I know) without damaging our spine neck and shoulders. So thank you for the solid advice. I love the Lena bag in the top right corner but it may not be your choice…Let me know if you would be interested in seeing our bag once its designed and being sold. Thank you again, Dvorah Telushkin, 212 222 7136