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While the fashion set definitely has a knack for going all-out with their outfits, even the trendiest person can’t deny the appeal of a good neutral, minimalist handbag. They go with everything and feel timeless season after season, so having one in your rotation is a must.
Here’s how to find your perfect pick. Start by deciding which color would best suit the most items in your wardrobe. Do you wear a lot of black? If so, try going for a bag that comes in a shade of white, cream or tan. Do you love wearing a ton of bright colors? Try nabbing a little black bag this season.
Then, figure out if you’re a fan of hardware on your handbags—and what color hardware you like best! It wouldn’t make sense to get a bag that’s decked out in gold chains if you almost exclusively wear silver jewelry on a daily basis. These bags are meant to fit seamlessly into your wardrobe, not compete with what you’ve already got.
And while you definitely don’t need to spend a ton of money on a new accessory, these handbags are certainly worth the splurge if you find The One. Brands like Coach and STAUD both sell options that come in buttery-smooth leather guaranteed to last you a lifetime. But if you’re not looking to ball out this season, old faithfuls like Mango and House of Want both have chic options that retail for under $100 bucks.
Ahead, I rounded up a bunch of the best minimalist handbags on the market for easy seasonal styling. Don’t be surprised if you want to pick up more than one!
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Swinger Convertible Leather Crossbody Bag
Found: The perfect little black bag. This mini bag from Coach holds all your essentials and features a secure turnlock closure, so it’s ideal for a night out with your friends.
Carly Shoulder Bag
If you want to play with silhouette, keep the color of your bag simple. This Carly Shoulder Bag from celeb-adored brand J.W Pei features a rounded shape and a faux croc print that works for day or night.
I tend to love anything that comes in this chestnut shade of brown and this bag is no exception. Buy it now and carry it forever.
Gabine Saddle Bag
Just because a bag has a minimalist design doesn’t mean it can’t come in a fun color! This mustard-hued Gabine Saddle Bag from Charles & Keith works for summer or fall, but there are five other hues to consider, too.
We Are Chic Vegan Leather Top Handle Crossbody
Forget what you’ve heard, because I say that white bags are a year-round essential. This purse from House of Want will make way more of a statement when it’s paired with an all-black outfit.
Vintage Minimalist Tote
When the color you choose is understated, feel free to play with the shape of your handbag. This option from Hoxis has a modern handle silhouette that’s minimalist, but far from basic.
Mini Cloud Clutch
This Mini Cloud Clutch from Mansur Gavriel comes with a delicate crossbody strap, so it works for almost any occasion. And this color is so versatile!
Liza Crossbody Handbag
This mini Liza Crossbody Handbag from Olivia Miller is so petite and cute. For just $28 bucks, it’s worth adding to our minimalist handbag collection.
Liza Crossbody Handbag
Essentials Coated Canvas Clutch
Olive green is basically a neutral at this point, right? This canvas clutch bag from Dagne Dover has a sleek, hardware-free silhouette that won’t break up your look.
Mini Shirley Leather Bag
STAUD makes some of the coolest bags on the market, so they’re 100 percent worth the splurge. This Mini Shirley Leather Bag comes in a few colors, but this oxblood hue feels very appropriate for the fall.
Quilted Chain Bag
Leave it to Mango to design the bag that I want to carry everywhere right now. From the plush puffy silhouette to the thin gold chain, this minimalist option has it all.
A version of this article was originally published in February 2016.