Which brand's bags hold up the best?

valerievo

Member
Jan 14, 2017
12
1
hi everyone! :wave:

I'm a long time lurker of the forums but am now looking for advice.
(TLTR: which elegant black leather work-appropriate and 13" laptop-sized handbag designs can stand the test of time and held up at least five years? Because that's what I wanna buy!)

I've been on the market for a new work bag (ho hum), a discreet, black, big enough for a 13" laptop with zippered top, so I can keep my belongings safe. Not gigantic or heavy. I like structured satchel bags that stand up on their own, have a shoulder strap for hands free use. I dislike boring shopping-like tote bags, want some kind of minimalist style and a bag that can last a seriously long time. Something light so it isn't so heavy when I stuff it. A classic which isn't matronly. I carry my lunch separately so this is really just for work items and I don't want to carry a separate briefcase.

I don't baby my purses but I don't beat them either. My MO is to use a work bag Monday through Friday at the office (conservative and I'm the only female executive) and on weekends take out my more casual or pretty bags. I'm not a super high end bag user and a logo-y bag like Chanel wouldn't be well seen in my firm. I'd like to spend $1500 or less.

Reason being is that all these contemporary bags I've bought in recent past have broken, fallen apart and generally didn't hold up longer than two years. It's frustrating and I'm done wasting my money every 2-3 years on things that fall apart. Maybe I'm crazy but I think a $400 leather bag should last longer. So now I'm wondering if high end is the way to go.

Culprits:
- MK jet set tote in saffiano leather - fell apart in two years. Pockets came apart within a year, the straps tore and it didn't keep its structure within six months and everything would just fly out if it tipped over. No fun when traveling on a plane and you're awkwardly searching for your lipstick and wallet under someone else's seat. :facepalm:
- Auxiliary Bega bag (brilliant but now the strap broke and aritizia has no help on this issue). Finding a replacement strap that fits has proven challenging. It's too bad because they've discontinued this model and it's just gorgeous albeit too small for a laptop.
- Badgley mischka- I forget the name of the model but it was made of good, thick pebbled leather like Alexander wang uses. It was heavy, and got too slouchy. It was great for schlepping stuff like lunch and shoes but not refined enough. I gave it to my 20-year old niece.

My favourite bag style is the fendi peekaboo or YSL zippered Cabas. I tried a Mansur Gavriel lady bag and while I adored it, wasn't big enough for a laptop. I may just buy it in a mini size for weekend use instead.

Please help, bag experts!
 
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CharlotteE

Member
Feb 24, 2015
42
38
Colorado
I've been pondering your question and it definitely is a difficult one! Just needing the zipper/ closure and wanting something light but structured rules out a lot of my favorites. I don't personally own one but do you like / think the large MCM Milla would fit the laptop? The price point is right and from what I've seen here people are happy with the quality. I've been thinking about getting one as a replacement for the Prada double bag I just sold.

I too adore the Fendi Peekaboo ... :smile:
 

renee_nyc

Member
Dec 2, 2011
872
1,180
New York City
My Mulberry Alexa has held up well and is 7 years old but they don't make it anymore. I have a double zip that is even better that I bought because I wanted a grown up structured bag to hold a laptop but it's only 3 years old.
 

thedseer

her?
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Sep 27, 2009
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Check out the Massaccesi thread. They are newer, but the quality is excellent, the price is good (and there are fairly regular promotions), and everything is made to order in Italy and customizable. Several of the styles should fit a laptop - I know there has been somewhat recent discussion about which ones.
 

valerievo

Member
Jan 14, 2017
12
1
Thanks everyone will definitely check out your suggestions. I also fell upon Von Holzhausen bags and they look promising and not too expensive (eyeing the medium tote, even if it doesn't zip up, but it's a shoulder bag.) I also started to compromise my zipper requirement and thought of the Mansur Gavriel sun tote in large. I like the mcm milla very much but it appears the main complaint is that it's so heavy.

Will post again if I find something :smile:
 

valerievo

Member
Jan 14, 2017
12
1
My Mulberry Alexa has held up well and is 7 years old but they don't make it anymore. I have a double zip that is even better that I bought because I wanted a grown up structured bag to hold a laptop but it's only 3 years old.
Pardon my ignorance but who makes the double zip? Mulberry? Thank you :smile:
 

Easyeve

Member
Oct 19, 2014
51
47
It may require spending a bit more if you buy brand new or looking at the preloved market to find your price point, but everything you're looking for can be found with the Givenchy Antigona bag (medium). It's a beautifully constructed bag, that will fit your laptop and hold up for YEARS! It's a workhorse bag that won't look beat up in a year or two or three. It's saturated in the market place but you won't find overly negative feedback on its quality. The sucker is heavy though.
 

fashion16

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Apr 15, 2007
4,935
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It may require spending a bit more if you buy brand new or looking at the preloved market to find your price point, but everything you're looking for can be found with the Givenchy Antigona bag (medium). It's a beautifully constructed bag, that will fit your laptop and hold up for YEARS! It's a workhorse bag that won't look beat up in a year or two or three. It's saturated in the market place but you won't find overly negative feedback on its quality. The sucker is heavy though.
I have a Givenchy Antigona, the large size and it does not fit a 13 inch laptop. It won't even fit my 12 inch laptop due to the length of the Zippered opening
 
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Clarissa77

New Member
Jan 8, 2018
1
1
Hi! Curious to know which bag you ended up with. I'm looking for a minimalistic work bag (+ laptop) as well and debating between MG sun tote and Ampersand as Apostrophe tote. Thanks!
 
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Oct 24, 2006
1,536
8
I like my older Chloe bags and found that I didn't have to baby them but they wore really well. I think overall that the older designs of a lot of brands seem to be better workmanship or maybe the designs were more durable somehow. I've been wearing my Arayla Hepburn tote a ton lately for travel and work and am totally in love with it. It fits my MacBook and a bunch of other odds and ends plus I don't have to baby it at all but the leather is still super nice. They're having a sale right now too.
 

vixnkitten

Bag problem? Who me?
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Jun 18, 2007
1,125
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I am the wrong person to ask about durability because I tend to switch bags often so they do not get much wear. I have a few old trusted well-loved bags that I keep in the rotation that never fail me.

Glamourgirlpink - I also have an Arayla bag, but I have the Nightingale and I love it. I recently traveled with it and was amazed at how much I was able to stash in it. The crossbody strap is a lifesaver! I have been eyeing a tote so maybe I will take advantage of the sale!
 

TotinScience

Member
May 16, 2017
1,004
3,711
I am with you with the search for a perfect zipper tote!
Marco Massaccesi makes customizable totes with zippers (midi Selene or full Selene etc) or some models that come with (Modena, Venus, Sienna if you like satchel style).
Von Holzhausen recently released a zipper tote in their Technik Leather - while I am a fan of this brand, I personally found that tote a bit too bulky, but it could have been just me.
Shinola has some new zippered totes and hobos as well.