handbag reviews


Boutique Mexico Stella tote review

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Pictured: pink and orange tote c/o Boutique Mexico, this is the Stella tote in medium.

If you are wondering where the next big thing in fashion will come from, it will come from Mexico. Mexico is starting to gain recognition in the fashion industry through their hand-made brands, and couture designers. One of the hot brands from Mexico to watch, and shop from, is Boutique Mexico.

Boutique Mexico not only combines traditional Mexican craftsmanship with fashion, they enable artists to rise above poverty and help their communities achieve economic stability. Isn’t that amazing! You can read abut their entire story online here. Love!

The Stella tote by Boutique Mexico is hand-made by artisans in Oaxaca, Mexico. It is hand-woven with plastic, making it a great tote for all-around use. I love wearing mine as a handbag, as seen here, or as a beach tote. It can be worn for any occasion where a tote is needed! I love the addition of the hand-made tassels; they add a fashion-forward and fun element to the bag itself.

This spring, I have been carrying my denim jacket, a book, wallet, sunglasses, lipstick, iPhone, and keys around in my Stella tote. Even with all of these items I still have plenty of room inside the tote bag in case my kids want me to carry something for them. It is really roomy!

Tassels are a huge trend right now in fashion. The tassels on the Stella tote make it on-trend; plus they are so cute and fun! Love them! The tote comes in a variety of colors, but the orange and pink version is my favorite.

Boutique Mexico has amazing products in addition to handbags. They offer hand-made jewelry, accessories and more! Each product is made in a different village or town in Mexico. It really is a one-stop-shop for Mexican fashion and gifts. Love it!

The medium size tote is shown in this post; which is extremely roomy. There is also a large version which is great for travel, poolside, or the beach. In addition to the Stella tote, Boutique Mexico has a large selection of handbags to choose from, all of which are hand-made!

You can find the Boutique Mexico Stella tote online here, or visit the whole shop at BoutiqueMexico.com.


Cult Gaia Ark handbag review

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Pictured: Cult Gaia Ark bag natural size large

Wondering what the new IT bag of 2017 is? Look no further, it is the Cult Gaia Ark bag; and it does not cost an arm and a leg to obtain. Love that!

Normally IT bags are priced well into the four figures. Well, this cute little wooden half circle of a bag is priced well under $200. Can you believe it! I was a bit shocked myself.

cult gaia ark bag review

The Cult Gaia Ark bag started to emerge as a hot handbag last year. I remember seeing it and thinking it was cute, but it didn’t click until the fall season. Since the bag is basket-like, it did not seem like something I needed in cooler weather. There is something about the Cult Gaia Ark bag which evokes a vacation vibe. It feels tropical; taking you from the busy city streets to a calm beach where you don’t have a care in the world. Yes! I need this now!

Since spring has sprung, and the Cult Gaia Ark bag is in stock, for the moment, I decided it was time to pull the trigger and bring a vacation vibe to my spring wardrobe. There are several colors to choose from, and the Cult Gaia Ark bag comes in two sizes; small and large. Since I have kids, I decided large was the size for me. I also chose the natural hue since it is the IT color for this bag. Natural is perfect since it is a neutral hue which works well with any outfit or color palette. Love!

how to get your hands on a cult gaia ark bag

As you can see, the interior of the Cult Gaia Ark bag is roomy in the large size. I can even fit a book inside! Since it is also a great bag for the beach, this size will come in handy since I can fit a book, a few snacks, and more. Relaxation, here I come!

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My biggest concern about the Cult Gaia Ark bag was the sturdiness of the weave. So far, I haven’t heard any snaps or creaks. It seems to be quite sturdy as it can handle the large book I am currently reading, as well as my sunglasses; two bulky items with a bit of weight. Whew!

The bag has two handles and easily sits upright, making it easy to set down without having to worry about the bag tipping over and spilling; since there isn’t a clasp. The handle is comfortable to carry, but if you need to hold it for a long period of time, I would recommend wrapping it in a scarf. Which leads me to my next thought. . .

This bag is see through! I am sure you noticed that. ;- ) If you don’t want the world to see what is inside your Cult Gaia Ark bag, then this is great opportunity to personalize your Ark bag! You can easily slip a square scarf into the bag as a liner. This will cover your purse contents and add color, or even a fun print, to your bag. I plan on trying out different scarves with the bag as the season progresses.

how to style a cult gaia ark bag

If you are wondering how to get your hands on a Cult Gaia Ark handbag, now is the time! You have to act fast because the Cult Gaia Ark handbag sells out almost as quickly as it comes in stock. Remember the days of Mansur Gavriel selling out before you even knew it was there? This isn’t as bad as that, but the bags sell out in a few days, so move fast if you want one!

If the natural hue isn’t your thing, I recommend the Cult Gaia Ark bag in classic black. It is chic, and translates well into both city and beach dressing. If I grab another one, it will be a small black Ark bag. I think it would be the perfect alternative to a clutch this spring and summer season.

What do you think of the Cult Gaia Ark bag? Are you excited to see an affordable IT bag this year? I am super excited to see an IT bag which is unconventional, yet sleek enough to pair with almost anything. Plus, the price is amazing!

You can find the Cult Gaia Ark bag in stock online here.

Cult Gaia Ark in natural around the web:

In additional colors:

how to wear a cult gaia ark bag


Mansur Gavriel Sun tote review

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Pictured: Mansur Gavriel Sun tote in pink patent leather / iPhone 7 case / Lipstick / similar wallet / cat eyes beauty case / Chanel sunglasses

Leave it to Mansur Gavriel to design a simple, chic, and perfect handbag for the fall season! The new Mansur Gavriel Sun tote, or Sun bag, has been introduced for the fall 2016 season, and will be part of the iconic handbag designing team’s ongoing, classic collection. Love it!

The Sun handbag by Mansur Gavriel is offered in four sizes; mini mini, mini, Sun, and large. The Mansur Gavriel Sun tote I am reviewing, is the regular or “Sun” size in pink patent leather. I have not seen the Sun bag on the street yet; neither here in the San Francisco Bay Area, or in New York during fashion week, so the most popular size is still to be determined.

Although Mansur Gavriel’s Sun bag has not been a sell-out in under a hot minute, as the bucket bag was in its’ hey-day, this sweet little tote bag is proving to be a coveted handbag for the fall season and beyond. The Mansur Gavriel Sun tote is gaining traction on social media, and it is becoming a highly searched bag on the Internet. This handbag will gain IT status as we enter the new year, and the spring 2017 season; just watch it! That being said . .  if you love this feminine, sweet little tote, I highly recommend snapping one up now, before they become hard to find.

Mansur Gavriel’s Sun tote is a feminine contrast to the current crop of handbags which are popular on the streets right now. The Pierce bag is edgy yet chic, Chloe’s line of bags are boho and carefree, while Gucci is going for a street-meets-upper-east-side vibe. The Sun tote by Mansur Gavriel is not trying to fit into any “trend” mold, it is standing alone as a simple, easy to wear tote bag which is lightweight and comfortable. Isn’t that why we love Mansur Gavriel? They take the gimmicks out of handbags and offer simple, functional bags which are beautiful and easy to wear. Love that!

I originally pre-ordered my Sun bag by Mansur Gavriel back in February when Moda Operandi featured a trunk show of the designing duo’s fall 2016 collection. When the bag arrived a month earlier than I expected in early October, I was thrilled! The “Sun” size is a traditional medium handbag, and the bag’s simple construction, and sweet bow, have made it an instant favorite. I love the open top as well as the wide interior pocket which fits my iPhone 7, lipstick, and keys. There is also a detachable shoulder strap which adds to the versatility of the bag. Perfection!

This has become my go-to bag on the weekends when I need a little bit more in my handbag than I get from a shoulder bag. The extra space is perfect for carrying odds and ends my kids hand me, as well as for storing snacks to keep my kids from getting “hangry.” The patent leather is nice this time of year since it resists the occasional drizzle and rain we receive here in the Bay Area. It is also easy to keep clean if my kids touch it with dirty hands. The patent leather simply wipes clean. Love that!

The Mansur Gavriel Sun bag is a beautiful handbag which is easy to wear daily, and fits into a busy girl’s life. Since I love this bag so much, I am now eyeing one of the smaller sizes in cobalt blue. It would be fun to have a smaller bag for days when I don’t need so much room.

You can find the Mansur Gavriel Sun tote in stock for now, online here, here, and here.

Happy handbag shopping! Stay fabulous 😉

Mansur Gavriel Sun tote in stock

pink patent mansur gavriel sun bag