Versatile and Stylish Belt Bags for Everyday Convenience

Versatile and Stylish Belt Bags for Everyday Convenience

Image: Shopbop

OK first thing’s first, I know, I went MIA again, and I apologize…but be rest assured that if I was ever going to quit this blog (which aint gonna happen), I’d make a statement. Sometimes life gets in the way and that’s exactly what went down—I basically had three weekends of DJ gigs, work picked up, and I took a little vacation to Lucidity Festival (which yes, involved one of those gigs)! It was nice to take a break, but was also looking forward to picking it up again. Whether I post three times a week or once or not at all, I’m always looking for new things to write about! I thought today’s post should somehow tie into the music festival spirit, so I decided to write about a staple in that community which I’ve noticed gaining traction in the contemporary fashion world: utility belts. You might know them as belt bags, or most commonly, fanny packs. However, this notably tacky piece from the ’80s has totally been reinvented!

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Stylish New Activewear for your 2018 Resolutions

Stylish New Activewear for your 2018 Resolutions

Image: Revolve

Hello again! I hope everyone had a nice holiday season and some great time with family and friends. I am quite blessed during this time of the year to receive paid time off from my 9-5, and although I could spend that time writing more posts for all of you, I always choose it to relax and take a break from everything. It truly is needed as soon as it comes around! It’s also a great time to reflect on the past year and think about how to start fresh after New Years Day. Many people come up with resolutions, whereas I prefer to keep good habits year round. However, I do like to think about what goals and fun events I plan to reach and attend throughout the next twelve months.

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The Beyond Yoga x Kate Spade New York Collection

Kate Spade is one of those brands that I’ve had my eyes on for a long time now. I never owned anything from them until just recently, when I grabbed one of their Charlotte Street Alek crossbody bags at a special online secret sale! Although I’m not partial to girly items or a lot of pink, the brand has kept my attention with their sleek, clean and classy handbags. I’ve only glanced at Kate Spade apparel here and there, but this new collaboration with Beyond Yoga caught my eye. Beyond Yoga is a luxury athleisure brand designed to take wearers of all body types and sizes from studio to street. They also don’t photoshop their models to ensure you will find your new favorite, best-fitting piece. Another thing I like about the brand is that they take classic silhouettes and enhance them with their own unique details! I always have a fondness for taking items people normally see as simple (like jeans, for example), and making them extraordinary. Beyond Yoga’s philosophy of clean but bold makes them a perfect pair with Kate Spade to create a one of a kind athleisure collection!

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Kate Spade Rocks Polka Dots

Kate Spade Rocks Polka Dots

Cedar Street Dot Margot by Kate Spade

Kate Spade Rocks Polka Dots

Kate Spade can do no wrong. At least that’s how I feel…just about everything that Kate Spade releases I covet. It’s tough in the design world (whether you’re talking interior design, fashion, graphic design…you name it) to go by the moniker of “less is more” without losing your unique touch. This brand is one of the few that managed to nail it, and every piece is so perfectly polished from the realm of refined and grown up to cute and a kid at heart. I actually do not own any Kate Spade items yet, but this brand has been on my radar for way too long! As I’ve mentioned before, when it comes to patterns, I like large, blocky ones. I don’t really like a lot of noise. So when I discovered these cute playful polka dotted items from Kate Spade, I took notice. How beautiful yet cute are these items? When it comes to bags, I usually like just plain, basic colors, but the Cedar Street Dot Margot bag above and the Cedar Street Dot Small Harmony as well as the wallets I have displayed here are so tastefully done and I could see them going with almost anything!

Crisp color, graphic prints and playful sophistication are hallmarks of kate spade new york. as our world expands, our exuberant approach to the everyday is evident in each category we enter, from handbags and clothing to jewelry, shoes, stationery, eyewear, baby, fragrance, tabletop, bedding and gifts.”

Not only does this “Spot On” collection cover bags and wallets, but we have watches, laptop covers, tops, scarves, skirts, footwear, and even some home decor items like clocks, candles and even stationery. When I think “Kate Spade,” I think of those gorgeous black shoulder bags I’ve been seeing everywhere that are currently mentally competing with my much-loved black Coach Large Zoe bag that’s currently sitting in my closet, waiting to come out this fall. But now I’m seeing spots!

Here’s a few of the gifts offered in this fun polka dot print…

Check out the full Spot On collection here, or shop items below!

Basic and Functional Leather Bags

Basic and Functional Leather Bags - Madewell Berkeley Bag

Madewell Berkeley Bag, in Burnished Caramel and Deep Navy

Basic and Functional Leather Bags

I don’t know about you, but when I get in my mind a simple idea for a bag (or anything for that matter)…something that will function the way I need it to, last awhile, and maybe look at least a little visually appealing in a basic way, it takes me FOREVER to find it. I cannot believe sometimes how long it takes to find such basic items nowadays, in such a drastically over-saturated market where everyone is constantly trying to outdo each other with the most extravagant eye-popping show-off styles—oh yeah. I guess I can believe it. But still. Sometimes, I just…can’t…even. If only I had the resources at the tips of my fingers to start my own store and just magically produce everything I have ever spent more than an hour or more than $5 in gas just trying to locate. I think it would be quite profitable. It’s a common complaint I’ve heard from both style conscious and not so style conscious people. Fortunately, it seems there are a handful of companies that already have the power of popularity who decided to actually get back to basics and ditch the superficial side of things. The bags above are from a huge fashion industry favorite, Madewell, who actually branched off of basics brand J. Crew in 2006. Madewell has a huge selection of basic leather bags and wallets that might be pricy, but for a good reason: they will fit any outfit, last you for a long time (seriously, would you rather buy 34534 cheap bags that fall apart and only work with one or two outfits or pay about the same price as you would on those for one versatile, durable bag? I’ll take the latter) and get your toting jobs done.

Basic and Functional Leather Bags - Kate Spade Inside Out Pocket Tote

Kate Spade Inside Out Pocket Tote in Vachetta and Black

Kate Spade Saturday is another great brand, which probably doesn’t need much of an introduction. We all know Kate Spade, and Kate Spade Saturday was created to bring “weekend spirit to every day of the week with good, easygoing style and a sense of spontaneity.” They also have a beautiful collection of basic bags (some that look very Coach-ish to me). Shown above are two great examples, the Inside Out Pocket Tote in Vachetta and Black. Now this one is a first to me…I am more of a fan of simple exteriors, but I found this pretty neat…pockets for any small essentials on the outside, without looking bulky! I do love convertible bags (bags with a strap to hold as a handbag and a longer one for shoulder or crossbody), so this one caught my eye immediately. It features everything on the outside, with just one little side pocket on the inside.

Basic and Functional Leather Bags - Kate Spade Inside Out Pocket Satchel

Kate Spade Inside Out Pocket Satchel in Vachetta and Cherry

Above is another variation of the Inside Out Pocket Tote, but smaller, in satchel form! This one also comes in a Peacock color, or a dark turquoise.

Basic and Functional Leather Bags - Need Supply Co.

Images: Need Supply Co. – Lizzy Disney Envelope Clutch in Cognac and Matte Black

I’ve been subscribed to Need Supply Co. newsletters for awhile, and I’m always kind of drawn into the minimalist designs they carry, both in apparel and accessories. Need Supply is a brick & mortar store in Richmond, Virginia. They started off carrying vintage Levis in 1996 but branched out to a general men’s and women’s accessories and clothing store, and in 2008 they went online! They mix both popular brands and up-and-coming ones to keep the mix fresh. These Lizzy Disney Envelope Clutch bags are just one selection out of their huge bag collection…seriously I could have posted more but I need to keep this brief! How cute are these? They are a bit pricier at about $500, but they are handcrafted in England with brass hardware, a cute stud closure and suede lining. With an 8″ height, 11″ width, 1″ depth and a 19.5″ shoulder drop, it’s a perfect bag to carry your essentials out on the town while running errands or just getting the heck out of the house for a few hours.

Basic and Functional Leather Bags - BAGGU® Drawstring Purse

Image: Need Supply Co. – BAGGU® Drawstring Purse in Caramel

Another find from Need Supply Co., BAGGU® has been on the market for quite some time and is available through several major retailers. The brand is just about as basic as you can get. Even their self-proclaimed biography is simple: “BAGGU® makes simple, high quality bags in many bright colors. They’re durable and fill many uses so you can own less stuff.” I only knew about their canvas totes and backpacks, but apparently they have a lot of leather goods as well! This cute, simple little leather drawstring purse looks like something straight out of a Renaissance faire. It might not be as functional as some of the above Kate Spade Saturday bags, but if you are a fan of minimalism, this one is a great bet…basically the photo illustrates the entire product.

There are obviously a ton of great bags out there…my two favorites Coach and Foley & Corinna always have some simple, well-made basics and even Louis Vuitton has branched out a bit and ditched the often-tacky logo patterns for some of their new, more classic collections (as has Coach). It’s nice to see some of the higher brands answering the call, but not everyone is interested in name-brand items or showing off in any sense, so it’s good to know there are other options out there. Oh yeah, I almost forgot Fossil…check them out too, they are also a great bet 🙂 Happy shopping!

Breaking Out of the Rain Boot Rut

Rain Boots

Breaking Out of the Rain Boot Rut

Every year I’m tempted to get a stylish pair of rain boots…but they seriously are few and far between. Why? I have no idea. At least, it’s tough to find them in stores. Although, being in California, we rarely get seasons so bad that really warrant a rubber pair of boots to keep our feet dry (unless maybe you live in San Francisco), I always like the idea, because they are so cute…and perhaps because they trigger a slight case of nostalgia — the last time I truly remember making the most of a pair of wellies was when my sandbox would flood when I was a kid, and I’d march around in it in my boots, fascinated by the feeling of being submerged, and yet dry (simple pleasures, you are truly missed).

When looking for cute rainboots, I always run across the same “wellie” style, just with different prints, and maybe an embellishment here and there. They aren’t exactly stylish and only seem to be meant to wear from point A to B, where you’d swap them for something more outfit-friendly if you were meeting someone for dinner or heading to work. So I decided to peruse the net for a bit and find some different styles, because I really think the style world needs to think about breaking out of the rain boot rut a little more. Granted, I think we’re probably done here in California this year, but I figured this might be helpful for some other style-savvy people in areas not so dry…and we still have the spring…come on weather, April showers bring May flowers, right?

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