Bag of holding, only real and stylish?
June 2, 2013 11:46 AM   Subscribe

My current purse (this in Extra Large) has finally bit the dust after nearly 3 years of service. It held a lot, and was ergonomic, but not particularly stylish. Help me find a purse that holds a lot, is ergonomic, and stylish. Oh, and preferably under $100.

I regularly carry an iPad 2 (has its own cover, and goes in a padded netbook case) which takes up the most room. I loved the Ameribag because it was comfortable to carry when full, had a cross-body strap, and lots of little pockets for storage. It easily held the iPad, complete with case. It was not, however, stylish.

I've thought about another Ameribag, since they do come in some patterns and colors, but I'm wondering what other options are out there. I would be willing to ditch the netbook case for the iPad if the purse had some sort of padded pocket specifically for an iPad+case. A messenger bag would probably be a better fit for all my stuff, but I'd really prefer a purse. Even a stylish purse/messenger bag hybrid would probably be okay. I just don't want to have to switch back and forth between a bag and a purse. Whatever I get needs to be my every day bag.

My budget is a little flexible, but not a lot. I'm in the US on the east coast. If I can see it in a store, even better, but not vital.
posted by booksherpa to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
LL Bean has the same bag in leather. It's over your budget, but looks a lot better than the canvas or microfiber. I think it's stylish.
posted by raisingsand at 12:11 PM on June 2, 2013

I like this type of bag and I think it's stylish, but I go more for bags than purses.
posted by loveyallaround at 12:22 PM on June 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

I have had several Zaum bags (I like the Citta series) and they are amazing. I get compliments all the time.
You can even design your own. The owner is very nice and helpful. They are a bit spendy (for me anyway) but she usually has a 30% off Cyber Monday sale....
posted by exceptinsects at 12:27 PM on June 2, 2013 [3 favorites]

If you're going to get a Baggallini, as lovelyallaround suggests, be sure to check TJ Maxx/Ross/Marshals-type places -- I saw some there just this weekend for way cheap.
posted by itsamermaid at 12:38 PM on June 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

The Kavu Rope bag is a styled-up version of what you have now, and you can afford two colors!
posted by apparently at 1:03 PM on June 2, 2013

I really like Big Buddha bags. There are many different styles and the bags are pretty big so I don't think you should have a problem with throwing in your iPad and then some. You can get the bags from Macy's, etc. but if want to buy it online, I'd suggest Zappos because they have great customer service.
posted by satine at 2:11 PM on June 2, 2013

Tom bag
posted by mani at 3:24 PM on June 2, 2013

Chrome bags. Little bit more than your budget but they're indestructible. Also awesome.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 4:16 PM on June 2, 2013

Definitely look at Maruca (here are their mid-size slings, for example). Extremely well-made and beautiful. (They're in a lot of east coast stores; their site has a good store locator.) Note that some of their large bags go up to $110-ish on their site but are cheaper on
posted by kalapierson at 5:52 PM on June 2, 2013

Response by poster: Many of these are beautiful, but seem on the small side for me. The dimensions of my current purse are 21" x 13" x 8". I may have to rethink my requirements...

The LL Bean is nice, but definitely too small. I've had Baggallinis before, and they don't quite do it for me, generally, though I may give them a second look. Kavu and Maruca are too small (though I really like the fabric on the Marucas, might get a smaller one of those), Tom aren't US based. The Zaums are smaller than my current bag, but definitely worth looking at if I downsize a little.

If I stick with the current size I carry, I really like the Chrome bags. Indestructible is good. :) It seems like my trifecta of large, ergonomic, stylish might have to be fulfilled with a messenger bag.

More suggestions always appreciated! Thanks for all the ones so far.
posted by booksherpa at 7:14 PM on June 2, 2013

The Ogio Brooklyn is my everyday bag, and it has an iPad pocket. It's casual, but nicely structured with pockets, so it holds a lot before it starts to bulge. $40. They also sell a larger messenger bag.
posted by limeswirltart at 7:19 PM on June 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

I've been shlepping around Europe for the past couple of weeks with a Kinies bag from Etsy. It's pretty cheap, comes in a bunch of colors, and I think it's cute for a casual everyday bag. It doesn't have a dedicated tablet pocket, but it does have a ton of room and sectioned spaces to tuck things. I managed to stuff an iPad, an umbrella, and a knitting project in mine today, but it still looks very much like a purse and not a messenger bag. It also comes in two sizes, although I confess, I don't actually know which mine is; probably the larger one, but I'm told the smaller one is still pretty big.
posted by Diagonalize at 7:47 AM on June 3, 2013 [2 favorites]

(bigger Maruca)
posted by kalapierson at 9:56 AM on June 3, 2013

Response by poster: Diagonalize, how comfortable is the Kinies when it's stuffed? One thing I really like about my Ameribag is how comfortable it is to carry, even when full. I found that the design really helped a lot.
posted by booksherpa at 10:07 AM on June 3, 2013

I find it quite comfortable. The cross body strap is adjustable and fairly wide, so it's easy to make the bag hit where you want it without feeling like you're being garroted. The strap is attached with metal clasps that swivel, so that also helps the bag adjust appropriately while you move around.
posted by Diagonalize at 1:17 PM on June 3, 2013

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