Seams, hardware, lining, zippers, leather – it’s all equally important when it comes to a high quality handbag. Just like love and marriage, you can’t have one without the other(s). But just like a machine, if one piece breaks or is underperforming, the entire thing might as well be useless.
You might be thinking that the appearance of a bag is the only thing that really matters, but if the zipper on your handbag breaks or the seam splits open, your bag isn’t doing its job anymore. It doesn’t matter how on trend it is or how cute it looks with your outfit when your phone just went flying across the room and your tampons just landed on the hot guy next to you at the bar. Both scenarios will ruin a fun night in a matter of seconds and make you wish you hadn’t opted for that cheap bag.
“Fast fashion” is both a blessing and a curse. It is pretty cool to be able to dabble in the season’s hottest trends without breaking the bank just to look stylish, but it makes it tempting to pass on higher quality products because of their price tag, leaving you with a closet full of disposable clothes and accessories. When it comes to handbags, don’t let price deter you from purchasing a nicer, higher quality leather bag. The price may be higher up front but a well-made high quality leather bag in a timeless style will last for many years, not just one season (or one wild night out) and may even end up getting better with time as the leather wears and ages.
Here are some things to look for when you’re shopping for a high quality leather bag:
- Seams and stitching:A high quality bag will have smaller, even stitches. The seams should lay flat and not pucker. Beware of uneven, unraveling, or crooked stitching.
- Hardware and zippers:High quality zippers are made of metal, brass being the best choice. All hardware should be attached securely and any stress points should be reinforced with extra stitching. Test the zippers a few times before buying, they should be smooth and feel sturdy. Look out for plastic hardware and zippers – these are destined to fall apart and break on you.
- Lining:Lining should be made from durable material. This should go without saying, but make sure there are no holes or tears in the lining before purchasing. I once had a bag with a hole in the lining; it took losing two of my favorite lipsticks and my keys before I discovered the gateway to my bag’s personal lost and found.
- Leather:Quality leather is soft and buttery and will have that distinctive leather smell. Avoid anything that looks or feels plasticy or rubbery as it may be a synthetic material that will crack and fade with use.