Of the three things in my Trifecta, bags are the thing I love most. The very most. Nothing pulls together an outfit like a nice handbag, especially one that's appropriate to the outfit and suits your personality.
Buy the best quality you can afford.
While I'm the first to admit I have a bag problem, I've always gone for quality over quantity. I almost never buy a cute cheap bag from Target because I know it's not going to make me happy long term. I will gladly buy second hand high-end bags on eBay because the quality, details and look are so much more appealing and satisfying. If it means I own one or two second hand expensive bags instead of five cheaper new bags, so be it.
If you are not a handbag person and tend to carry one until it dies, this especially applies to you. This is something you carry EVERY DAY. And everyone can see it! You really want to pick something of good quality that's going to look nice for a long time. It drives me insane to see a nicely dressed woman carrying a ratty bag with weird strings hanging off it. Please don't. If you're thinking, "Damn bitch, I can't afford Marc Jacobs even on eBay" I have you covered. Please go directly to Marshalls or TJ Maxx and look for nice leather bags with Italian brand names you've never heard of. Those are some nice bags for not a lot of money.
Don't be boring.
A black bag is fine and you should probably have one but don't feel like it's your only choice. It's the safe choice but cognac, eggplant, cobalt and red can be really versatile and a lot more interesting. Prints are fun too but not as your main choice.
Okay, so how many is too many? How many do you really need? This would be my bare minimum:
For fun I'd add:
And, since I like talking about bags I'll tell you about my two favorites. First, my Marc by Marc Jacobs Hillier Hobo. I bought this with a gift card I won from a blog contest but even if I'd paid full price for it I'd say its worth every penny. It's my everyday workhorse - the perfect size, indestructible, easy to carry and, well, look at it:
Beautiful. I never get tired of carrying it and will probably buy a replacement when it dies. If I could only have one bag, it would be this one. But! I do not have to limit myself to one bag, so my second favorite is a bag that is slightly impractical but such an object of beauty that I don't even care:
My LV epi leather Speedy. It's a classic shape, a beautiful color and also very hardy. I bought it secondhand on eBay and it was the most I'd ever spent on a bag. I LOVE carrying it and it always gets comments. A handheld satchel is not that practical, but it fills me with joy every time I use it. That is a successful purchase right there.
So, your turn. Are you a handbag person? Tell me everything.