Mariella Vilar Bags

I can't remember where I first spotted Mariella Vilar's preppy, practical straw baskets, purses, and clutches, but they certainly caught my eye.  Maybe it is the idea of a straw basket -- carrying one must mean I'm on my way to a pool or the ocean, right?  Plus, these have bright colors, monograms, and even pom-poms if you'd like.  You can customize the color of the stripes and the monogram, choose from three different types of leather handles, and add images.  I'd keep mine simple with two colors for the stripes, a monogram, and long handles so I could carry the bag over my shoulder.  You can view a gallery here, which is full of examples.  Now I haven't seen one of these in person, but I'm smitten.  

All images credit to Mariella Vilar.

Sword & Plough

Last week, I spied the cutest tote on the arm of someone and had to follow up with them to get the details.  The tote was made by Sword & Plough, a company headquartered in Colorado and started by two sisters.  While in college, one of the sisters (who was an active-duty officer) realized that the armed forces generates a massive amount of waste from used gear and clothing.  She created these high-end bags from this "waste" and  the company relies on a veteran work force and donates ten percent of their profits to initiatives that benefit veterans and their families.  Inc. did a neat profile of the company that you can read here.  The Signature Tote is my favorite item, but if I hadn't found a solid Weekender Bag earlier this year, I'd have my eye on one of those, too.

Crab & Cleek Totes

I love a designer bag as much as the next woman, but the classic canvas boat tote from L.L. Bean will always have a special place in my heart - and my closet.  They are functional, durable, preppy and always in style and I find that I reach for those totes much more often than any other bags we own.  Even Blythe is the proud owner of a L.L. Bean tote bearing her name!  I recently stumbled upon a fun version of the tote that is emblazoned with preppy logos from Crab & Cleek.  For summer, the French sailor shirt and the lobster caught my eye, and I adore the thermos and the Woody tote for fall and winter.  With Mother's Day just around the corner, you could order one for your Mom and fill it with some of her favorite goodies and a bottle of wine?

The totes are 22" wide, 14" tall and 10" deep. 

All images credit to Crab & Cleek.

The Bermuda Bag

I've been lucky to receive a number of stylish items that were passed down from both of my grandmothers.  One of the most-used items is a classic Bermuda bag that I've taken to almost every wedding we've attended (and there have been a LOT of those).  In the most recent Mark and Graham catalog (which I always love perusing), these bags were featured.  They are incredibly preppy and I think I love the preppiest of them all most - the blue seersucker.  What do you think?  Too preppy?

All images credit to Mark & Graham.

Metaphore Totes

I own quite a few totes.  Most aren't particularly pricey, but they are usually patterned and colorful and practical (I really like being able to wash a bag - things spill, right?).  I have a few nice bags in my rotation for work, but you are just as likely to catch me carrying a reusable tote (my favorite of which is from an industrial waste conference Rob went to - thanks bud).  A few years ago, I fell in love with this tote, but it just seemed a little pricey for what it is (mostly canvas).  So, I was psyched to find these totes from Metaphore out of Istanbul in an assortment of patterns and at a much more reasonable price (under $100).  Which one is your favorite?  I love both of the polka dot bags... maybe the red?  

Metaphore Red Canvas Tote Bag.jpg
Metaphore Herringbone Tote.jpg
Metaphore Dotted Leather and Canvas Shoulder Bag.jpg
Metaphore Striped Canvas Tote.jpg
Metaphore Brown Leather Tote Bag.jpg

All images credit to Metaphore.

Kiel James Patrick Cape Codder Bags

K alerted me to the arrival of these extremely cute totes at Kiel James Patrick!  The uber-preppy company based in Rhode Island has taken the classic Bermuda Bag wood-framed canvas tote, added a long leather strap and a nautical rope embellishment, and used fabulous fabric.  I have two of my Grandmother's Bermuda Bags and find they are appropriate for most any occasion.  One of these would be perfect for summer!  

All images credit to Kiel James Patrick.