Quick handbag style glossary

Women's stuffI make a weekly blog post contribution on behalf of an online handbag retailer, and one of the things that often confuse women (or the men who shop for them – lucky girls!) are the meanings of the different kinds of bags.

Hobo: As one of the most common bags, the hobo is a great day-to-day option. It comes in many different sizes, but it is never considered bulky or oversized. It is often made of soft material (fabric or leather), and has a “slouchy” appearance. A hobo handbag can easily accommodate a wallet, cell phone and other personal items with room to spare.

Satchel: Remember the bags mailmen used to carry, with a strap across their chests leaving their hands free, and partitions to keep the mail neatly separated? Those are satchel bags, but no longer relegated to mail duty. With the convenient compartments and pockets, fashionable satchels are a crossover between the briefcase and the handbag, allowing you to carry documents, gadgets (most modern bags will accommodate an iPad with ease), your purse and everything else you need.

Tote: A tote has a large capacity that allows you to carry paperwork, a laptop or lunch. Modern mothers often use the tote as a purse-diaper bag combo. It has long straps to make it easy to throw the bag over your shoulder and go. For those who carry their whole life with them (or if you plan to be stranded on a deserted island), the tote is the perfect choice.

Shoulder bag: The shoulder bag is the most versatile bag a bagonista can have in her collection. This handbag commonly has two shoulder strap lengths for carrying ease; a short option that allows the bag to fit snugly under your armpit, and a longer strap that lets the bag rest against your hip. These bags also come in a variety of sizes, and can have extra pouches and pockets to hold everything you need.

Clutch: Also referred to as a coin purse, this small, hand-held bag is just large enough to hold your daily essentials: a little cash, identification, a credit card or two, cell phone and a tube of lipstick. This bag is perfect for short trips to the store or a special evening out, often embellished with gems or crystals to add that little bit of extra sparkle to your outfit.

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