Sale alert! 9 bargains to bag in the summer sales

Posted on July 15, 2014 by Rachel Kwei | 0 comments

It feels like the sales have been on forever. You'd assume that all the interesting things would surely be snapped up by now. Not so. A quick look around and you'll see there's plenty of bargains to be had. This list of ten bargain buys includes many that can be worn right into the colder months. Be quick, I'm sure they won't last long!

1. Ally Capellino, Viviene frame bag £329 was £655

Ally Capellino Viviene frame bag

Ally Capellino Viviene frame tote
2. Ally Capellino, Molly tote in tan £220 was £320

Ally Capellino Molly tote in tan
Ally Capellino Molly tote

3. Milli Millu, The Montreal in black £295 was £525

Milli Millu Montreal bag front
Milli Millu Montreal bag back

4. TL-180, Cabas large tote in black & brown €380 from €475

TL-180 cabas large tote

5. TL-180 Secchiello bucket bag €380 from €475

TL-180 Secchiello bucket bag

6. Tila March Christy Postier €290 was €580

Tila March Christy Postier

7. Tila March Martha Messenger €245 was €490

Tila March Martha Messenger

8. Zatchels Bronze metallic saddle bag from £33 was from £75

Zatchels bronze saddle bag

9. Leather duffle bag from Plumo £109 was £145

Leather duffle bag from Plumo

Posted in Ally Capellino, Milli Millu, Plumo, TL-180, Zatchels

Looking for a... leather backpack

Posted on August 15, 2013 by Rachel Kwei | 0 comments

A few people have asked me about leather backpacks recently (or rucksacks, if you are a Pom ;-)) So, this post is dedicated to the top five from independent designers I've come across lately... Hope you see something you like and don't forget to let me know if you are on the hunt for a particular type of bag - I might have seen something  that suits.

PB 0110 - CA7
This is the first collection from PB 0110 and I love the sleek, minimalistic designs. The colours used in their range are really beautiful and their backpacks come in two sizes - the
CA7 at 24.5x35x11cm is the smaller of the two (€349) and CA6 is the larger backpack at 31x42x14cm (€449)

PB 0110 CA7 backpack white, navy, peach
PB 0110 CA7 available in white, navy, peach €349 

Ally Capellino - Billy backpack
From the Ally Capellino range of Zippy bags comes the Billy backpack. One of the things I love about the Billy is the squarer shape which makes it very functional for putting a lot in (if you are like me and a bit of a bag-stuffer). Internally, it has a padded pocket that can fit up to a 13" Macbook and a zipped pocket for things you don't want floating around. Available in black, mint and white, I'm loving the mint with the brown straps which are, by the way, padded.

Ally Capellino Billy backpack mint, black, white
Ally Capellino, Billy backpack £644 available in black, white and mint (above)

Kara Handbags - black backpack
I recently came across this US brand Kara, launched in 2012, and like this modern backpack which comes in black and maroon. It's got two zipped pockets - one interior and one exterior.

KARA black backpack
Kara, black backpack also available in maroon US$480

Grafea - popcorn yellow backpack
This bright yellow backpack from English brand Grafea will be a nice pop of colour especially for those heading into autumn and not ready for the usual muted tones of the cooler seasons. It's got several exterior pockets, including a zipped pocket on the back for things you might need to quick access to but need a bit of extra security for. 

Grafea popcorn backpack yellow, blue, red
Grafea, popcorn yellow backpack £160 also available in blue & red

Hayden-Harnett - Thierry backpack
Hayden-Harnett is a US-based bag and accessories brand. With a broad range of accessories and pieces, including a great range of mens bags, the Thierry is described as a 'sling' bag rather than a backpack as it has a single, adjustable strap. The overall style is the same minus the traditional top-flap pocket of a backpack and has a zipped, exterior front pocket, and interior slip and zipped pockets large enough to fit an iPad.

    Hayden-Harnett Thierry backpack stone black
    Hayden-Harnett, Thierry US$398 available in stone and black
    Have you come across any interesting designers or backpacks lately?

    Posted in Ally Capellino, backpack, Grafea, Hayden-Harnett, Kara Handbags, PB 0110, rucksack

    New Season: Ally Capellino Autumn Winter 2013

    Posted on August 08, 2013 by Rachel Kwei | 0 comments

    The new season from Ally Capellino is in store now. Their website has also had an overhaul making it easier to find exactly the style of bag you are looking for so head over there to have a look. There are lots of frames - bags, purses and clutches - which I'm loving at the moment. Here are a few of my favourites from the new collection.

    Ally Capellino Lana handbag red, tan
    'Lana' shown in red, also comes in tan £630
    Ally Capellino Loretta clutch handbag red, tan
    'Loretta' clutch also comes in red £325
    Ally Capellino Kelly handbag black, red, grey
    'Kelly' shown in black, also comes in dark red and grey £445

    Ally Capellino Jessica purse grey, black, red
    'Jessica' purse also comes in black and dark red £132

    Ally Capellino Jerry handbag mint, white, black
    'Jerry' shown in mint, also comes in white and black £588

    Posted in Ally Capellino, Autumn Winter 2013, frame bag

    Feature: shoulder bags

    Posted on July 15, 2013 by Rachel Kwei | 0 comments

    A friend of mine is in the market for a shoulder bag and asked me for some recommendations. I've been a little bit obsessed with totes of late and that's definitely been reflected in my posts. So I've had a bit of fun pulling together a shortlist of five different shoulder bags, each style a little different from each other but all from interesting independent designers.

    Ally Capellino Donna bag from SS13 Powder range
    A modern take on a classic frame style, the Donna bag is typical of Ally Capellino design. It comes in two beautiful colours, softly hues of brown and yellow. And even better, it's currently on sale on the Ally Capellino site.

    Stella and Lori, Brown Leather bag  
    Coming out of Tel Aviv, the Stella and Lori brand is all about unique, individual products crafted from high quality raw materials with great attention to detail. The Brown Leather bag has a short, over-arm handle and a longer over shoulder or cross body strap and can found on the Stella and Lori Etsy store

    Shana Luther, Louie Satchel  
    The Louie Satchel from Shana Luther is a great looking shoulder bag with the option of double shoulder straps or a removable long shoulder or cross body strap. It's big enough to fit a 13" laptop which I like as I'm a bit partial to a big bag! I really like the grey which is a colour that's versatile enough to work as well in summer as it does in winter. It's also on sale on the Shana Luther website.

    Hawke and Carry, handmade bag  
    Hawke and Carry was founded by Paula Collins, an ex-designer for many well-known American brands. Her inspiration is derived from "people producing things on a smaller scale" and she hand makes all the products from the Hawke and Carry brand so if you order a bag from Hawke and Carry it will be made especially for you! Contact Hawke and Carry here.

    1 Per Diem, Pebbled Lambskin bag  

    1 Per Diem is an accessories brand that takes inspiration from the streets of New York where it's based and their range of products are made. While this bag also comes in black, I am loving grey at the moment and this is another example of a trans-seasonal bag plus has the flexibility of being taken from day into the evening as it's on the smaller side of all the shoulder bags in this post.

    Posted in 1 Per Diem, Ally Capellino, Feature, frame bag, Hawke and Carry, Shana Luther, shoulder bag, Stella and Lori

    Feature: weekenders

    Posted on April 09, 2013 by Rachel Kwei | 0 comments

    Who doesn't love the idea of a weekend away or a mini-break where you can throw a few things into a bag and jet off somewhere fabulous? It's the romantic notion of being able to drop everything and go, life's necessities carried over your shoulder. As people are getting desperate at this time of year and heading off in search of sun, here are a few bags that will pass for carry on luggage, just don't forget about your liquid allowance if you are travelling by plane.
    The Jimmy, Ally Cappellino
    If you've got a bit of cash to splash, this would be one weekender worth splashing it on. It's got two interior canvas pockets and one handy external pocket. It only comes in one colour but the tan is so gorgeous it would be hard to go past it.
    The Jimmy by Ally Capellino £630

    Weekender, Clare Vivier
    This navy blue leather weekender from Claire Vivier is another stand out item for me. In addition to the two handles, it also has a longer, detachable shoulder strap and zippered interior pocket. Personally, I like the navy as it's classic and the celery for something a bit different but it comes in four other colours - black, camel brown, green and sanguine. 

    Weekender by Clare Vivier US$483

    Leather travel bag, Trakatan
    Made in Italy, this weekender only comes in black but is a great size if you need to fit a bit more in than a couple of days worth of stuff. It's got two handles and a long over the shoulder or cross body strap.
    Leather travel bag by Trakatan €510

    Soho travel bag, Elf
    From the Local collection, the Soho is the perfect carry-on bag (44cm x 30cm). It has two exterior zipped pockets on each side with two flap pockets on each end. Inside there's two compartments and a zipped pocket. Hand made to order in Bali, all Elf bags are produced by hand and delicately lined in your choice of traditionally hand dyed Batik cotton or in plain suede if you prefer.

    Soho travel bag by Elf US$299

    Florence Weekender Duffel, Knomo
    And for a non-leather option, this is a scotch-guarded durable nylon bag. It comes in terracotta with the option of two short handles or a long shoulder strap, and 'leather-like' trim. It comes with the "If lost" Knomo ID number to help your bag find you. I think it's priced at a very reasonably £145 for an weekend bag with a bit of personality.

    Florence Weekender Duffel by Knomo £145

    Posted in Ally Capellino, carry on bag, Clare Vivier, duffel, Elf, Feature, nylon, overnight bag, Trakatan, weekender

    Alternative to... Louis Vuitton Neverfull

    Posted on March 15, 2013 by Rachel Kwei | 0 comments

    A hugely practical bag, the Louis Vuitton Neverfull is lightweight and large allowing you to throw everything in and tote it around with out a care. Some people love them, some hate them but they clearly offer a lot of utility for their owners. This would have to be one of the most copied bags around, including being very popular with the counterfeiters so here are a few alternatives if you like the practical style of the Neverfull but want to be a bit different (and spend less money!)

    Edhopper Shopper, Essentiel Antwerp
    The Edhopper Shopper from Essentiel Antwerp has the same shape as the Neverfull but is a little bigger. It's got an exterior zip pocket and comes in two colours. Essential Antwerp doesn't ship outside of Belgium, France, Luxembourg or The Netherlands so if you are not planning trips to any of these places you can buy online from Zalando.

    Edhopper Shopper by Essential Antwerp £110

    Kennedy tote, Joie
    US based brand Joie, known for it's laid back California-luxe style, also has a good range of coated canvas bags in around the same size as the Neverfull. The Kennedy tote also comes in spicy orange and has an interior zip pocket.

    Kennedy tote by Joie US$158

    Mansur Gavriel tote
    These beautiful Italian leather tote bags from, another US-based brand, Mansur Gavriel, are my favourite leather alternative to a Neverfull. They come in a range of fantastic colours, some with an interior resin coating in vibrant contrasting colours which make for an interesting design twist.

    Mansur Gavriel totes from US$210

    IllBeCa Harrison Street Tote
    The Harrison Street tote is a good looking bag but what makes this tote unique is that it's got some great features - adjustable handles, an external pocket and a unique removable nylon drawstring pouch ideal for protecting the inside of your bag as much as keeping everything together inside. Not only is the bag really reasonably priced, as the whole IIIBeCa range is, they donate 3% of the wholesale price to three different charities. So you can justify your purchase by knowing you are doing some good! Comes in five great colours for summer.
     Harrison Street tote by IIIBeCa US$178

    Marjorie, Ally Capellino
    This bag is part of Ally Capellino's Conservative range of bags. Truly a classic investment piece that will withstand the test of time, it's made from Italian vegetable dyed leather and made in London. One of the great features of this bag is that it not only has the mandatory interior pocket, it also has double magnetic flaps on the inside covering the interior of the bag to keep your things that little bit more safe and secure. It comes in great colours too - the gorgeous and refreshingly different sea blue (definitely my pick), grey and, a more timeless, dark brown.

    Marjorie by Ally Capellino £448

    Posted in Ally Capellino, Alternative to, coated canvas, Essentiel Antwerp, IllBeCa, Joie, leather tote, Louis Vuitton Neverfull, tote