A Guide On Choosing Your First Designer Bag

Ooh-la-la! Designer bags here I come!
By: Cherelle Lim
November 19, 2021

We’ve all had that moment window shopping when you come across the most beautiful designer bag you’ve seen in your life. Every gut instinct is telling you to buy it now! But should you? If you’re a millionaire and it isn’t your first time making quite an expensive purchase, then go ahead! By all means, splurge on yourself! But, if it is your first time, you might want to hold back. Or, you’ve just been casually browsing online when all of a sudden, an idea hits you. You want a designer bag. 

Okay, you think to yourself, “I’ll get the cheapest designer brand I can find!” and that’s that. End of story. But, what happens when you do exactly that and end up not liking your purchase at all? We don’t think designer brands are too keen on refunds either. But what are you going to do? You don’t want to go through all the trouble of researching for days and end up not buying at all! Well, that’s why we are giving you all the glitz and glam on how to choose your first designer bag. 

How To Choose Your First Designer Bag

1. Define your Budget

The first step to choosing your first designer bag before you even start favouriting is to set a budget. How much are you willing to spend? That is the million-dollar question. A budget can really help you narrow down your choice of a designer bag, and help ensure that you don’t go overboard. Although it’s never too fun to limit your budget, it is the most important step. A budget can also help you start saving up for your designer bag. What’s more, you might also want to look into how much your designer bag will cost in the long run. If you want your first designer bag to be Chanel or Hermès, you better start saving up now!

2. Choose A Brand

Jeremy Moellergetty Images

Speaking of brands, that is what you have to determine next. Which designer brand are you looking to buy. There are so many out there in the fashion world and sometimes, it can be hard to choose. Other times, you feel conflicted because the designs look almost identical, but yet the value is always different. So, which should you pick? We’d recommend going with classic luxury brands that will stack up value in the long run. Vintage pieces are always a shoo-in for first-time designer bag buyers. A key tip to pay attention to when choosing your brand, is that quality always triumphs. Long-lasting materials and excellent craftsmanship are what you need to be looking for. Hence, luxury brands such as Hermès, Dior, Chanel and Bottega Veneta are excellent picks. 

3. Choose A Model 

Once a brand has won you over, here comes the tricky part. Choosing the model of the bag. As all luxury brands are, they have several different models for all of their bags. Some can be similar to each other, and come in variants of sizes. Choosing the right bag model to invest in, can secure the value of your bag in the long run too. So choose wisely and note that the three things you should be asking yourself are – What’s the occasion? Which bag size is right for ME? And how should I care for my designer bag? 

4. The Occasion

Before purchasing your designer bag, you should be asking yourself, what are the occasions I frequent? Depending on your answer, you’ll get a pretty clear picture of what kind of bag you need. If you need a bag to multitask, a spacious inside with shoulder straps should be your aim. You should also be thinking about what outfits you want to pair with your new designer bag. Do you want something timeless to match all your cocktail dresses and evening gowns? Then a clutch bag should do the trick. 

5. The Right Bag Size

Since you already know what kind of designer bag you want, here’s another question for you to answer. Which bag size suits me? Think about everything you’re already carrying in your current bag. Look at all the bags you’ve had so far. What size are they usually in? If you always need to carry power banks, keys, a large purse and makeup, a larger bag size is your pick. But, if you realised that you tend to leave the house with just your cards, keys and phone, then a mini or small bag will do nicely. A tip when choosing small designer bags, is to always double-check the measurements. Just in case it might not fit your phone, or purse. 

6. How To Care For Your Designer Bag

In owning a designer bag, you’ll also need to learn how to care for it. You can’t just throw it around and let it collect dust. There needs to be the time in your schedule and life for you to clean your new designer bag. If you are opting for a leather bag, you might want to read up on what type of leader the brand is using. Whether it requires high maintenance or not, will help you decide if this designer bag is worth spending. 

7. Sustainability Is Key, Buy Pre-Loved

Lastly, a great way to save on your budget, while not at the risk of being ripped off, is to shop through luxury second-hand stores. You can find many pre-loved designer bags online and in-stores. Not only is this a much more sustainable option to shopping for designer brands, but you’ll most likely be able to find unique models that are no longer on the official market. The best part about shopping pre-loved, is that you might just find a vintage gem.