The perfect purse is one that leaves your hands free, doesn’t slip off your shoulder and has all the room you need to schlep your essentials wherever you go. Here are our picks.
Light and Compact
Classic ‘school-girl’ design made of thick, durable polyester fabric. Great for travel. JanSport
If you’re planning on using your bag for travel and adventures, you’ll want to look for something made of a thick and extremely durable fabric such as canvas or polyester. Bonus points if it has a slightly slippery finish—such as nylon or polymide—that you can wipe clean.
Products by this legacy brand are an investment: You’ll have this forever. Kipling
Most backpack purses have at least one smaller pocket for easy access to your phone, keys or wallet. But if you are a real stickler for organization, make sure you check the inside layout. Some are one big sack, while others have tinier pockets for things like lip gloss or a pen, padded areas for your laptop or tablet, bonus RFID wristlets for your credit cards and key tethers to keep yours from getting lost.
Classy, understated monogram design with a fully lined interior and plenty of zippered storage. Calvin Klein
If you want a bag that can go straight from the office to a picnic or casual dinner date, look for something with a simple silhouette (no over-the-top zippers or hardware) in leather or vegan leather. Choose something in a classic color like brown, black or tan so it’ll go with anything—and never go out of style.
Buttery leather pick with an innovative teardrop shape, bold zipper details and five pockets. Rebecca Minkoff
Looking for a heritage piece that will last forever and hold its value when you decide to re-sell or hand it down? You can’t go wrong with a designer-made, 100 percent leather bag. To keep yours in great shape, store it in a protective tote when not in use, or hang it on a hook.
Surprisingly roomy bucket style leather bag with four pockets. Frye and Co.
A purse is a fabulous—and oh-so-easy—way to add a pop of color to your tunic and leggings or business-casual pants and cardigan.