Any of these totes works?

If you remember I had a bag revelation when I had to return a beautiful white satchel because it does not fit my life style? The result was a realization that I need a big tote for work. I often walk to work and I carry lunch with me every day and gym clothes 4 times a week. I hate carrying more than one bag so it all should fit into one - and look good in the process: no gym bags for me!
My Monty cousin tote (pic 8) was the one which filled this bill the most - and I end up carrying it almost every day. I am not a bag lady but I like to have some change in bags from time to time. Also while Monty cousin is big enough to fit my lunch and yoga clothes when I pack gym clothes with running shoes it is too overstuffed and cannot zip. I need at least one more tote which is bigger and can fit all my stuff comfortably. |It also should be a very versatile color so I can pair it with almost all outfits - until I get more of them :-)
I found 2 totes which work for me in size and which style I quite like. Now I would like your opinion: is any of them is fab enough and versatile enough for me?
pic 1-  -4 Danier silver tote 
IRL it is shinier than on the online picture but not as quite as in my pictures: I think the closest one is #4. I like that it has this pebble or fish scale texture (pic 1) but is it a lot of bag for me?  I know sci-fi is on trend now but I would plan to use this bag for years - can I?

pic 5-7 Charles & David tote from Winners.
I bought this one last Sunday and could not make up my mind. I was not sure I want a black bag, especially for summer. Today I decided to return it, came to Winners and tried it once more before the mirror - and suddenly was not sure if I should return it. I found another one like this but in purple and thought it would be better but then I realized that black and light snake skin contrast makes it better for me.
So here I am with two bags and cannot make up my mind which one should I keep if any. I hope for a collective YLF wisdom - what say you?

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • lyn* replied 7 years ago

    Whoa, the first Danier bag is a statement bag for sure - I don't think this will be a bag you will use for years based on what a statement it does make. 

    To be honest, I think neither of these bags is as fab as your Monty cousin (8) which is a beautiful elegant bag - is your need great right now, or do you think you can hold out for another alternative?

  • amiable replied 7 years ago

    Ooh -- I like the Danier very much!  I'll be watching to see what others say :)

  • Runcarla replied 7 years ago

    I'm a bag lady, with a black gym bag (into which I toss my lunch bag) and also carry a purse.

    I really do like your current bag #8 but the silver Danier bag is pretty fab, and would work year 'round, I think. That said, I'm in the market for a pewter bag myself!

    Not crazy about the darker bag.

  • Adelfa replied 7 years ago

    I agree with Lyn that the Danier bag is probably not something you'll want to wear for years. Something about the black bag seems not only unseasonable but un-Sveta-like.

    I think both are acceptable but neither is fab.

    I like how you're analyzing your bag needs. I just started going to the gym again and have turned into a bag lady.

  • bj1111 replied 7 years ago

    Omg silver bag...surprisingly versatile.

    The one with reptile details looks pleather-ish to my eye...not as fab as you deserve.

  • replied 7 years ago

    I prefer the silver one. There is something in the placement of the reptile on the second one that looks jarring or dated to my eye.

  • Deborah replied 7 years ago

    I like both of them.  My concern for the silver one is that it may not be a bag you will have a long term relationship with:(  The black one with the reptile trim looks more like what would work with your work wardrobe.  But to be completely honest I am not sure either of these is your bag.

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    I like the silver! I am not sure you would be using it for years as is....but you could always dye it if needed. 

    And may I just say that I am exceedingly jealous of your ability to carry a tote so well? With my small self a tote so quickly becomes overpowering. Yet this is exactly the kind of bag I most prefer. I like a bag that lets me carry my life around with it! 

  • sarah replied 7 years ago

    Exactly what Deborah said. If you're going to use it for years, I would be sure to get something you love. It doesn't sound like you love the black one (although it's perfectly nice) and the silver one may not be so versatile, even though it's a great bag.

  • Adelfa replied 7 years ago

    Speaking of who can and can't carry a big tote, today I saw a homeless man carrying a super huge green tote! (Sort of an alternative to a shopping cart or stroller.) It was like the totes that the contestants carry on the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders reality show (but I know no YLF person watches this). Of course they need it for electric curlers, curling irons, straighteners, blow dryers, straighteners, hair spray, brushes, makeup bags, outfit changes.  But I always wonder where they buy those huge totes because I've never seen them for sale. And I wonder where my homeless guy got his.

  • Beth Ann replied 7 years ago

    I love the looks of the Silver, Sveta.  I'm on the search for a bag that also allows me to carry it across my body.  My back and shoulders are still pain free, but I want to keep it that way!  I'm finding a lot of heavy leather bags, which are also quite expensive, and a lot of "cute" bags.  I'll PM you if I see anything Sveta-like!

  • Nicola replied 7 years ago

    I vote silver too. I like its unfussiness and it's texture. I agree about longevity, only because it's not a blend into the background bag. But the style is classic.

  • Caro in Oz replied 7 years ago

    I love the silver one & think that metallic works well all year round. 

  • Lantana replied 7 years ago

    I think the silver one is cute but not chic and might date quickly. I think the black and snakeskin is a good choice. It is not overwhelmingly black. It has interesting features that would lend it to pattern mixing, with colour blocked items, for example, or with a black and white floral. I think it would be versatile and cross seasons.

  • Transcona Shannon replied 7 years ago

    There's something about the pattern placement of the Winner's tote that just doesn't thrill me Sveta.

    But I love the silver Danier tote (I think I have a serious Danier addiction!). I think it will look brilliant with your summer wardrobe of white, cream, yellow and blue. I guess it all depends on whether or not you think you will be sick of silver quickly. I think it's gorgeous!

  • Lisa replied 7 years ago

    I vote for the silver bag out of these two, I think it will be more versatile.  Metallics always work well for warmer months.  If you are looking to build a bag wardrobe this works for me. 

    If you want just one more bag though I'd hold off on this and get something slightly more classic.  Since the first bag you have is a print, I would make the second bag a solid. 

  • Glory replied 7 years ago

    Both are very nice - and I have been there too - planning a return and getting there only to change my mind. Especially at Winners where is seems someone is just waiting in the wings to grab your item :)
    I think the Danier bag is lovely but agree with many of the others that it won't have the staying power you are hoping for. Also, wondering if it is heavy unloaded, or perhaps that doesn't factor in?
    The black bag is nice but I would recommend a return and hold out for something that suits your style and function needs a bit more.

  • Zapotee replied 7 years ago

    Ah, bags are so personal. Out of the two of them, I like #1 better but I don't think either one is it.

  • Thistle replied 7 years ago

    Bags - such a big investment and a piece you carry with you all the time . . .

    So, I am going to vote keep looking.  I like the Danier bag, but I don't feel it has longevity. Year round appeal, yes. I also worry how the silver will hold up to lots of regular wear and am concerned it will look worn too fast.

    I am not a fan of the Winners bag. Something about the pattern placement, which is odd as I love color blocked bags and I like patterns.

  • rae replied 7 years ago

    Hm, I just don't like the placement of the reptile. 

    But the silver! I had pinned that just the other day! If it is not as shiny as the photos, I do think that a metallic bag will be used for years. I guess I'm against the grain, but it is a classic shape and metallics are always around. 

  • texstyle replied 7 years ago

    If I were going to invest in a long term tote that I wanted to use for years, I'd have to know, without asking anyone, that I loved it. But that's just me.  So I guess I'd say to keep looking for a while first, then make a choice. The Danier one probably won't go away soon if it's truly a classic design. 

  • rachylou replied 7 years ago

    I like the second, but it reads casual. If you're looking for something more office polished, I'd vote for the last. The first I find kinda kiddie.

  • Mander replied 7 years ago

    I'm not usually a fan of metallics but I do like the silver bag.  Maybe because it has more plain styling than a lot of the options I have seen lately -- I don't really like bags with a lot of gathers and bows and suchlike.

    The black one I'm not so keen on.  I like the contrast but the placement seems somehow sci-fi costume like.

  • Sveta replied 7 years ago

    Thanks for the advice! You definitely helped me to realize that this black bag is not what I need so it goes back for sure.
    For silver it is more complicated. I really like the size and style - very simple and graphic in the same time - fits my 'simple and bold' style descriptor. I like the texture - it is more interesting than a smooth metallic  finish. It is also pretty lightweight leather - something I was really looking for.
    The only thing I have doubts about is the amount of shine. It is quite shiny, not a subtle metallic. I would say the finish has something of a "mirror"   quality to it  - like Angie's new oxfords :-) It is definitely not subtle but because the shape is so simple and unfussy I think it is not over the top.
    I guess for this price ($80 + 20% off) I can afford to have it for a season or two if I get tired of it. I also think that with my tending towards minimal style this bag can play a role of the only jewelry I  may need in the outfit. Also I think I may be OK if this would be my spring / summer bag only if it proves to be too bright for the winter.
     Can you tell this bag is growing on me? I would love to hear Angie's opinion as well before I cut the tags...
     Here is one more picture I took tonight without sun reflecting from the bag into the camera :-)
    Again, thanks for helping me out, you are the best!

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    I like your rationale, Sveta, and I personally think it works well. It could be one of those "wild horse" items that become unexpected "workhorse" items. 

  • replied 7 years ago

    If anyone could pull off a big sci-fi silver tote, if would be you Sveta. Part of it is your attitude and that you would carry it with confidence. I like the fact that the silver tote is from Danier, that way we know it's good quality leather and won't start looking cheap after a few wears. Also it will double as a traffic reflector and keep you safe while walking to and from work!

  • Sveta replied 7 years ago

    Thanks Suz and Claire. This bag is not cheap looking despite the mirrored finish. This really puts me off shiny things most of all - the cheap look. I think this pebble texture helps a lot, it is not really visible in the pictures....but it is a lot of bag!

  • Gaylene replied 7 years ago

    Practicality aside, how does that silver tote rate on the happiness scale? A distinctive piece like a silver metallic bag ought to make you feel good on the inside when you walk to work. One of my best purchases was a bright orange tote that makes me smile every time I use it because it reminds me of summers at the beach drinking Orange Crush soda.

  • Sveta replied 7 years ago

    Gaylene, I think it will brighten my day! :-)

    Woo-hoo, I have Angie's endorsement, tags are coming off and it is coming with me to work (and gym) tomorrow!
    Please brace yourselves because you are going to be blinded with this new acquisition in a lot of my WIW posts from now on! :-)

  • Joy replied 7 years ago

    Yay! I'll bet you love using this bag. I especially like it in the photo you added.

  • goldenpig replied 7 years ago

    Love the silver bag!

  • Gabrielle replied 7 years ago

    It takes my breath away.  I love everything about it.  

  • T-Rex replied 7 years ago

    I love the silver one. If you get tired of it, you can send it to me. :-)

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