Earlier this summer, the sight of a British royal carrying a particularly smashing bag caused such a spike in online traffic to its manufacturer's website that it crashed. Since then, sales of the brand's bags have increased 58%. Who is this trend-setting royal, you ask? Kate? Pippa?
The Queen has been carrying Launer London bags for decades, but the rest of the world is only now feeling the love. Why the sudden infatuation with the top-handled structured bag (a.k.a. the pocketbook, a.k.a the church purse)? Try one on. Go ahead, we'll wait. Notice the chic-ifying effect. Your newly improved posture (Mom would be proud). The take-no-prisoners look on your face.
Yes, nothing says, "I am perfectly capable of running an entire empire, thank you very much," quite like a structured bag. You may not want to drop $1,057 on a bag just like Lizzy's, or (Lord help us) several times that on the Grand Mammy of them all, the Kelly bag, but fortunately you don't have to. You can find one at every price point.
My personal favorite bag in this category is Louis Vuitton's (sadly) discontinued rendition, the Malesherbes.
This bag was produced in several great colors (this bag looks particularly great in blue and yellow). I picked up this one (below) a few weeks back for a song from a consignment shop.
These bags look fantastic with Fall clothes, so stash your slouchy oversized hobos for a few months and embrace the lady-like look!