Lady Dior Handbag Cocoa Butter Diaries San Francisco Fashion Blog Bay Area Fashion Blogger SF Style Blog Bay Area Style Blogger

Questions and Answers: Handbag Edition

Fendi mini peekaboo with defender cover handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Fendi Mini Peekaboo bag (Retail Price: $3390) with Defender Cover (Retail Price: $550)

Happy Tuesday lovelies!

Last week, I asked y’all on this Instagram post to submit all of your handbag-related questions. Here’s all of your answers!

Question: Okay, I’m turning 35 this year and I think I’m ready to purchase my first grown woman bag. I’m not a bag lover so I need to know what’s a good designer bag to introduce me to being grown grown

Answer: Congrats in advance on the milestone birthday! Any bag can be a “grown woman” bag because it’s the woman who carries it that makes the bag. Can I get an amen?! You’re not a bag gal BUT you’re a chic mama on the go soooo I’m keeping my suggestions stylish yet low maintenance. Here’s what I would recommend:

Mansur Gavriel bucket bag in saffiano leather handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Mansur Gavriel Bucket Bag in Saffiano Leather (Retail Price: $625)

The Mansur Gavriel bucket bag in Saffiano leather is perfect! It holds all of the everyday essentials without getting too heavy when you load her up. She can be worn as a shoulder bag or cross body, can still be easily accessed even when tied, and she’s durable! Saffiano leather doesn’t scratch easily. And at under $700, she won’t set you back too much coin.

Celine Sangle bucket bag in grained calfskin handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Splurge: Celine Sangle bucket bag (Retail Price: $2400)

I may be a little biased but this bag is just so good! The Céline Sangle bucket bag in grained leather is perfect for an every day bag because she can take a beating and you don’t have to worry about bumps and bruises. She also holds a LOT for her size. It holds all my things…and then some! The most I’ve put in her is my 13-inch MacBook Air, a hardcover book, my planner, a S’well bottle, and all my daily essentials (wallet, card case, phone, keys, and cosmetic bag). Still had room too!

Question: Do you ever buy pre-loved?

Answer: YES! When I first dipped my toe into the luxury handbag market, I couldn’t justify spending that much money on a bag. Shoes, yes. Handbag, no. I would constantly say to myself, “2000 DOLLARS? FOR A HANDBAG?? THAT’S THREE PAIRS OF LOUBOUTINS!!” So I started exploring other options. I can’t remember exactly how I found out about Fashionphile but I’m so glad that I did. They have a great selection of pre-loved designer handbags but what truly sets them apart from other luxury consignments boutiques is this: LAYAWAY.

Yaaas girl! Layaway! Fashionistas on a budget can put 25 percent down and then have up to 60 days to pay the remaining balance. For someone like me, “putting a little bit on it here and there” to have the bag I wanted instead of charging it or saving up to only have the bag be sold out sounded like a great idea. Plus, if I put down the deposit, I was committed. We’re buying it. And here’s the bag I bought from them way back in 2016: My vintage YSL Cabas Small Tote

YSL Saint Laurent Cabas Tote  handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: YSL Cabas Tote (purchased in excellent pre-loved condition)
Retail Price: $2650
Purchase Price: $1395

All their bags are authenticated and I personally swear by them. Oh, and if you live in San Francisco (oooh that’s me) or Los Angeles they have a showroom where you can buy bags too. Happy Shopping (and you’re welcome).

Question: What’s your favorite bag, not regarding to any trends?

Answer: Don’t make me choose! Okay, that’s a cop out. If I had to pick ONE, my favorite bag would be my Fendi mini peekaboo. I carry this bag the most. She’s super lightweight, holds all my essentials, I can go hands-free easily, and I can change up her look by swapping out straps and covers (see beginning photo). THAT’S why she’s my favorite. But don’t tell my other bags this…they get jealous haha.

Fendi mini peekaboo with handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Fendi Mini Peekaboo bag (Retail Price: $3390)

Question: Is the Celine Luggage Tote worth it?

Celine nano luggage bag in Black handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Celine Nano luggage bag (Retail Price: $2700)
celine micro luggage kohl handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Celine Micro luggage bag in Kohl (Retail Price: $2900)
Lipstick: The Lip Bar liquid matte in “Bawse Lady”

Answer: 100 percent YES! I own both a nano and a micro (both pictured above) and they’re fantastic. They hold more than you think and the drummed leather is durable AF. Plus, given the quality of the bag, they’re not as expensive as you think they would be.

Question: What are your thoughts on the Givenchy Antigona? I’m looking for a “work bag” but I want something cute and big enough for a laptop.

Givenchy Antigona bag in black handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Givenchy Medium Antigona in Black Grained Leather (Retail Price: $2450)

Answer: I really like the Givenchy Antigona. The medium size is HUGE and it holds its shape very well. I personally passed on it because the small was too small and the medium was too big for my tiny frame. It’ll definitely fit your 13-inch laptop…along with your everyday essentials. Plus, it has a shoulder strap that’ll make it easier to carry if you need free hands or it gets a bit heavy to carry in hand or on the crook of your arm. Finally, since it’s going to be a work bag I also recommend getting it in the grained leather so you don’t have to worry about it scratching easily!

Question: Are Chanel bags really worth the investment?

Chanel jumbo classic flap with GHW handbag cocoa butter diaries San Francisco fashion blog Bay Area fashion blogger SF style blog Bay Area style blogger
Pictured: Chanel Jumbo with GHW (Retail Price: $6200)

Answer: Yes they are! However, the price increases are getting out of control for the new Chanel bags. To get the best bang for your buck, I’d go with a vintage one. They’re in excellent condition and are often half the price of a new bag. And to be honest, they don’t make them like they used to. My favorite place to shop for vintage Chanel handbags is Opulent Habits.

Pictured: Dior Saddle bag (Retail Price: $3300)

On a final note, what’s the point of having nice bags if you’re not going to take care of them?? Here’s how I take care of mine:

Storage: All of my bags are kept in their dust bags when not in use. Also, if you still have the stuffing from when you bought the bag, put that back in the bag too. It helps the bag maintain its shape.

Cleaning: Life happens so every now and then your bags will need to be cleaned. Your bags come with a care booklet inside for every day spills. Usually, wiping with a cloth will do it. For suede bags, I spray them with Scotchguard every 2-3 months. However, if your bag needs a deep clean, I would consult with a shoe/handbag repair shop first or ask your sales associate for a recommendation. I personally send my bags to Purse Rehab (except my Céline bags as their boutiques will clean your purchases every two years free of charge for the life of the bag).

This Q&A handbag post was really fun! What other question and answer posts should I do?? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo, CCB

P.S. To get your designer handbag collection started, I decided to do a little giveaway! Here’s how you enter:

  1. Subscribe to the blog newsletter
  2. Follow Cocoa Butter Diaries on Instagram AND Pinterest
  3. (Bonus entry) Tag 3 friends on the Instagram post with the first photo (the gold Dior bag)
  4. Das it!

Open to US Residents only. All entries must be received by 11:59 PST on 3/26. May the odds be ever in your favor!

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Shauniece

    Amber, I love your recommendations for virgin bag ladies like myself. The bucket bag is beautiful! The tip about the layaway option is a game changer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *