Ask any trusted woman in your life and she’ll confirm this universal style truth: It’s all about the bag.
Whether it’s a briefcase or backpack, don’t think of your bag as merely a functional carryall that totes your essentials around town.
Consider it a powerful accessory that has the ability to elevate the rest of your look. Or instantly detract from it.
“A rich leather duffel can make those ancient jeans look like they’re heading to a five-star destination; just as your perfectly tailored suit paired with a canvas messenger will look like you’re headed to your temp job,” says Jacqui Stafford, style expert and author of The Wow Factor.
So how do you choose the best one? Master the bag trifecta: Simple design, timeless color, high-quality hardware. One go-to: classic brown leather. It’s durable, extremely versatile and it never goes out of style. We like this classic brief from Frye ($1,264.40, frye.com).
And don’t be afraid to be rough with it. The already rich color will eventually create a unique patina that will remind you of your many adventures.
Brands like Coach, Bally, and Cole Haan also make excellent leather styles.
If leather isn’t your taste or budget, look for durable materials, such as nylon, canvas and coated canvas. This worn-in Filson briefcase is a solid choice (US$345, filson.com).
Brands like Jack Spade and L.L. Bean Signature also have timeless styles that balance rugged materials with urban sophistication.
By: Sandra Nygaard; images: Jay Reed/Flickr, Fyre, Filson