Best In Class: Spring Bags

Continuing with our look at fresh handbag ideas for spring, I’d like to highlight the monogrammed clutch. I have been seeing initials everywhere recently, in typefaces that are modern, elegant and architectural. A simple leather pouch is the perfect canvas for personalization. It has a utilitarian feel which nicely offsets the patrician practice of monogramming. They’re multi-purpose too: carry it as a chic clutch for an evening out; for your phone and other necessities in a business meeting; or pop into your carry-on to house valuables when you travel.

I personally always steered clear of monogramming because it belonged to an east-coast-prep aesthetic that wasn’t my style: belts with whales, Lily Pulitzer and calligraphic initials embroidered on Vera Bradley bags. Much to my delight, the urbanites have reclaimed the monogram, and proven its modern potential. I’m ready to embrace my initials. The only question is – which one to buy? There are too many good options. I did not list prices below because they tend to vary based on customization (size of bag and style of print), but browse-assured, most price tags for the below styles are very reasonable. And then there’s the $1,945 Valentino.

Here, my faves:


{the monogrammed clutch}


Etsy shop: Mimic Design



gigi new yorkimage from House of Harper

Gigi New York




Toss Designs




image from

Rebecca Minkoff 



J.Crew (from the monogram shop)




image from A Piece of Toast

Clare Vivier




Mark and Graham (both images)




Olivia Palermo

Olivia Palermo

Whistles London (UK stores only)



image from





Screen Shot 2014-02-27 at 6.09.25 PM

C. Wonder




West Elm



 image from the handbag concept

 Valentino “My Own Code” clutch




And, if you are the thrifty and/or crafty type, here’s an excellent guide from Lucky magazine online for how to monogram an accessory yourself. It’s a great way to make a basic pouch like this one from the Gap or this one from American Apparel, look like an upscale, one-of-a-kind clutch.


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