Evening Bags

evening bags

I’m fascinated by evening bags…

I even have a few. Well, I have some small(ish) bags that I use as evening bags. I don’t have a proper evening bag, though. Maybe that’s why I love looking at them…

An evening bag is the ultimate luxury item, isn’t it? So pretty, yet completely useless.

For starters it’s difficult to carry, as it often has no shoulder strap. What exactly are you supposed to do with it? Carry it in your hand? Tucked under your arm? Not very practical, trying to sip a cocktail while balancing a plate of hors d’oeuvres…

And then there’s the size. Most evening bags are way too small to be of any use: nothing fits in. OK, maybe you don’t need much when you go out, but still… There should be enough room for keys, a credit card, the bus pass, a phone and a lipstick. That’s the minimum I carry with me. Just try stuffing all that into one of those envelope clutches…

Clearly, I have minimum requirements when it comes to size. And I don’t like my clothing or accessories complicating my life. Then why am I so fascinated by these useless, pretty little evening bags?

Well, I’m convinced that it is possible to find a bag that would meet my number one requirement, being practical, while making a statement in the way only a proper evening bag can: adding a bit of luxury and embellishment to an outfit.


An evening bag is a luxury item

and it should look, and feel, like one. I admit that I’m a bit of a snob, and can’t stand fast fashion. But isn’t an evening bag a prime example of something expendable? As in something we use once or twice  a year at most, or something we get for a particular purpose or outfit? And as such, what’s wrong with something cheap and cheerful that we won’t mind tossing when we get tired of it?

Well, nothing, really. Except that it’s a complete waste of money, bad for the environment and bad for the soul.

Yeah, that last bit may need some explaining…

We live in a throwaway culture: everything has a built-in expiration date, be it clothes, gadgets or relationships. As a result we don’t appreciate what we have anymore: when we get tired of something, we just replace it with the latest upgrade. Not too bad, maybe even necessary, when it comes to technology, but as for anything else…

So, as a luxury item, an evening bag could be a one-off piece: something to cherish, the same way we would cherish a family heirloom or a piece of art.

What’s the price of luxury, then?

Lets say there is an evening bag out there that can fit  my keys, phone, bus pass, lipsticks etc. As a one of a kind, special piece it should also be breathtakingly beautiful, made of quality material, a true paragon of craftmanship. Sure, if only we could afford to pay the equivalent of the price of a car…

Let’s be realistic: money’s tight. And while we don’t want to waste our hard-earned cash on some crap that probably breaks before we get it home, we don’t want to spend a fortune, either. If we had a fortune to spend, we’d be spending it on something a bit more useful, anyway, like a holiday home or stock portfolio or an everyday bag…

Sorry, digressing here. A reasonably priced, good quality evening bag (or two), that’s what we need. An evening bag that is expensive enough so that we’ll want to take care of it and make the most of it, i.e. make it part of each and every festive outfit we have, for the rest of our lives. Because let’s be practical here: who really needs a dozen different bags? And who in their right mind needs a dozen different evening bags? And, most importantly, who has the space to store all those bags??? Well, I’m used to living out of a suitcase, so I’m a bit obsessed with having less rather than more…

clutch bag

One style fits all?

But we have many different outfits, it’s impossible to find one bag to suit them all. Unless it’s a really boring bag… You know, beige, no embellishment, no details, nothing to keep it from fading into the background. Doesn’t that defeat the whole point of having an evening bag?

My fantasy evening bag would be understated and classic, so that it would transcend trends. And it would be a neutral colour (not beige, maybe grey or silver) so that it would not clash with outfits in pink or fuchsia (my go-to colours when I want to make a statement). And it would be made of luxurious material: soft leather, lace or metal. But there would be no bells and whistles, no dangly bits (they just drive me crazy), no embellishment that requires constant replacing (which also drives me crazy).

What’s your fantasy evening bag like?


PS: Have you seen the latest DILETTANTE ARTIST post?

Linking up with: 

Not Dead Yet StyleElegantly Dressed and StylishGaray TreasuresHigh Latitude StyleSydney Fashion HunterThe Pleated PoppyStyle ElixirGet Your Pretty OnHappiness at Mid-LifeA Labour of LifeDoused in PinkCurly Crafty MomFashion Should Be FunRachel the HatSincerely Jenna MarieMore Pieces of MeColor and GraceNot Dressed As LambStyle Nudge


  1. Grace Liang
    10 December 2015 / 5:56 pm

    I like reading this post! I have a few evening bags too and I found I only use two very good ones all the time. Somehow they just never let me down. ;)Thank you so much for your nice comments on my blog. Really appreciate it! Please join us today for Color and Grace Fashion link up!Keep in touch and take care!Gracehttp://colorandgrace.com/

    • Tiina L
      12 December 2015 / 5:51 pm

      That's the way it is with most of our clothes and accessories: we wear the best / our favourites all the time. Makes you winder why we keep buying more…

  2. Alice Warren
    11 December 2015 / 3:47 am

    I love the look of clutches but try not buy too many since I don't get to use them much. Great selection here! Thank you for joining TBT Fashion link up and hope to see you next week. Have a great weekend!Alicewww.happinessatmidlife.com

    • Tiina L
      12 December 2015 / 5:54 pm

      Clutches are often so incredibly beautiful, aren't they? And so impractical. But I prefer a small crossbody bag, as it is so much more practical.

  3. Suzanne Carillo
    12 December 2015 / 12:06 am

    I'm a HUGE fan of vintage evening bags. I'm sure that comes as no surprise at all. Ha! I often find that they have a chain option inside the bag which is wonderful for when you need to go hands free (for me that is all the time). I will admit to having maybe…eeek…6 or 7 vintage evening bags. Gold, red, black and silver. They are each unique and I can always find one that'll work with my gown or dress. Vintage baby…for me it is the only way to go.bisousSuzanne

    • Tiina L
      12 December 2015 / 5:57 pm

      Oh, vintage evening bags! I have one, it's really pretty, but tiny. I used to have beautiful 1950's clutch but it must have got lost when I moved (I used to move quite often), I still miss it. And yes, going hands free is a must, even with evening bags.

  4. Nicole Mölders
    12 December 2015 / 5:30 pm

    Thanks for linking up to Top of the World Style. My fav is the one with ostrich

    • Tiina L
      12 December 2015 / 5:59 pm

      The 'ostrich' (not real ostrich but leather) is by Minna Parikka, a Finnish shoe designer. I have a couple of her evening bags, they're a bit bigger and fit everything I want to carry, and can be used as a clutch or as a shoulder bag, very practical.

  5. Petite Silver Vixen
    13 December 2015 / 9:25 pm

    I'm sooo with you about teeny weeny clutches. They drive me mad! Apart from WAGs using them, they are completely useless for the rest of the general population. I don't need a suitcase of a bag but I do need it to be big enough to fit the basics in!http://petitesilvervixen.blogspot.co.uk/

  6. The Wardrobe Stylist
    14 December 2015 / 6:35 am

    I agree with you.I don't have that many evening bags and in most cases I end up using a purse instead because I can hardly fit lipstick in it. Thanks for linking up with Grace and I 🙂

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