Style + Ask The Edit

Ask Belle: Versatile Leather Totes

Hi Belle,

I love this leather tote that I found on Club Monaco but the price point is too high. I do want something that is real leather and be something I will have for years. Would love if you could put a post together!

Best, Courtney

A leather tote is a great piece for the weekend, travel, or a relaxed work bag.  Leather is the best option.  Vegan leather (a fancier name for faux-leather) is a close second.

The important thing, after quality of materials, is to choose a color that you will use often.  Grey, cognac, and black are the most versatile choices.  I always prefer brown for casual wear, but grey is a close second.  For something a bit different, try navy or red.


Will Leather Goods Tote ($195) // Mark & Graham Everyday Tote ($199) // Kelsi Dagger Leather Commuter Bag ($95)

This white and black tote from Nordstrom is the closest thing to the photo you sent me.  It has a heavy canvas liner for durability.  The Mark & Graham tote is another good option in this price range.  It comes in a myriad of colors and can be monogrammed.  I also like this Neiman Marcus bag in a combination of black and chocolate brown.  Forever21 also makes an affordable black and white bag in faux leather.

The cognac Kelsi Dagger tote is similar to the one that I own.  I like the structure.  This Romona leather tote has a different shape, but a similar steadiness.  I also like this more affordable blush tote from Mango.

Many people speak lovingly about their Madewell totes.  Their Transport Tote is a good basic.  Their Zipper Transport Tote is a remake of Cuyana’s popular tote, in case you don’t want something with an open top.



  1. KMM says:

    I have the J.Crew Downing Tote and love it. Hoping it holds up…

    June 1, 2015/Reply
  2. PMD says:

    Check out the sales at J’Crew – I got a tote from there last season for $30. It was originally $150 or something ridiculous.

    June 1, 2015/Reply