Structured bags fall 2012 edition: these bags are sleek, angular, innovative, and simply gorgeous. If you want to build your outfit around a fantastic accent piece, you really need a structured bag. Some of them are edgy, some are all angles, some strategically mix shapes and patterns, but they're all incredibly elegant. If you want a marvelously modern accessory, something new and fresh and clean, take a look at these stunning geometric handbags and get some stellar style inspiration!
1 Cool Contemporary Bags
One of the most important things to learn about structured bags fall 2012 style is simply this: contemporary is always cool. The perfect blend of classic and modern, contemporary bags such as the 3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli tote are ideal choices. Even if you don't want an animal print, it's a good idea to look for a bag that mixes colors, whether it's black and grey, black and white, or even, say, pink and cream. A mixed palette softens the structural lines and shapes beautifully. Feel free to carry your bag when you wear a likewise subtle, subdued ensemble or make it an anchor of a vibrant, bright outfit.
2 Practical but Pretty Purses
A key element in most structured bags for fall 2012 is practicality. These bags are absolutely fashionable but they're also functional, so you won't be buying a handbag you can only use during formal occasions, club nights, or at the office. This Malavoglia tote from Jil Sander is an exquisite example, so use it as a reference point for inspiration. Find something with an architectural shape, plenty of room, and lots of style. It can be black, chocolate brown, or even navy, which once again is being touted as the new black. A practical but fabulous piece lends itself well to leather jeans, fitted but feminine suits, or fun and full skirted frocks.
3 Versatile Reversible Handbags
The great thing about really structured purses is that they're so versatile. The best part is that a lot of the bags in this hot new style take versatility to a new level, because they're reversible, so you essentially get two bags in one. I love the Newbark Anita reversible tote, which mixes leather and wool, and there are tons of similar handbags on the market from a variety of other designers. Keep in mind that tote bags are your best bet if you're looking for something reversible, but because of the dueling sides, you'll easily be able to wear it with all sorts of different styles, from casual weekend wear to elegant dates and dinners.
4 Timeless Two-Tone Bags
Similarly, two-tone bags are popular for much the same reason. The mix of different colors (or textures, in some cases) increases versatility, so that's something to think about when you're looking for a structured bag. Take a look at the Reed Krakoff Atlantique two-tone tote, for example: in addition to featuring different shades in a neutral palette, the colors accent the overall architecture of the shape and silhouette. Definitely go with a purse where the color adds to the overall design, because then you have an eye-catching piece.
5 Gorgeous Geometric Pieces
How, if you're into really extreme shapes, lines, and angles, then you need something like this. This is a leather tote from Sophie Hulme and, again, there are plenty of similar handbags floating around out there. From boxy clutch bags to rectangular shoulder bags to square totes, you'll be able to find lots of sharp, sharp pieces. Style-wise, it's an excellent choice. You can continue the look with really angled clothing options, like sharp shoulder pads and flared coats, or you can soften it up with lots of layering.
6 Sharply Lined Handbags
In keeping with the idea of geometric bags, it stands to reason that sharp line are in as well. The Victoria leather tote from Victoria Beckham says it all, and thanks to our super posh trendsetter, lots of other (and more affordable) designers are following suit with this look. When you choose a bag that exhibits lots of clean lines and sharp angles, simple is best. Stay away from too much hardware and instead go for something sleek and elegant. That being said, you can and should go for handbags in brighter, more unexpected colors; just make sure they'll look fabulous in fall and winter.
7 Inside-out Structured Bags
As with two-tone pieces, structured bags that uphold their structure with their design as well as their shape are absolutely gorgeous. If that sounds a little confusing, just use this YSL Cabas Chyc tote as inspiration. The black trim adds to the overall structure by following the lines of the silhouette and creating new shapes. Black on white or cream really pops, but any color combination will do as long as you choose hues that provide a pleasing contrast. You'll have the opportunity to look really chic, whether you pair your bag with a Chanel-inspired suit or a fabulous, winter-ready caped coat, a sweater, closely fitting leggings, and gorgeous boots.
Ah, structured handbags fall 2012 style: aren't they great? You'll find bags like these in all of your favorite stores and boutiques, whether you frequent Net-a-Porter, love Macy's, or can't get enough of Etsy. Remember, just look for sharp lines and lots of angles; from there, choose between neutral color palettes or bright, bold shades. Would geometric handbags work with your wardrobe?