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I Can’t Stop Wearing These $27 Baguette Bags

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

You may have noticed some posts from our friends at the Strategist on the Cut. They’ll be dropping in every now and again, sharing their expertise on the basics you don’t have time to research and the weird and wonderful things you don’t yet know you need.

Over the last few years, a ’90s staple — the baguette bag — has made its way back into our hearts and closets. The sleek, rectangular, short-strap purse has been on the arms of some of Hollywood’s most fashionable, including (but certainly not limited to) the Hadid sisters, Zoë Kravitz, Kendall Jenner, and Zendaya. Their petite, minimalist silhouette makes baguette bags low-fuss and easy to pair with just about any outfit, but they’re also not too small — they can easily fit your phone, keys, wallet, and an extra mask.

But these celebrity-approved bags are often sold at extortionate prices: The Fendi version (which actually started the whole baguette bag trend back in the day) costs thousands — as do the simpler, more understated options from Balenciaga and the Row. Needless to say, none of these designer options have ever made it past the casual, late-night “window” shopping phase.

But a few weeks ago, I bumped into a stylist friend of mine on a neighborhood walk. She had accessorized her big, knee-length white faux-shearling coat and brown boots with a yellow crocodile baguette bag. The small, bright, structured bag brought her whole outfit together, and I couldn’t stop staring at it. I complimented the purse and asked her where it was from, assuming it would be expensive and/or designer. She whispered, “You won’t believe this, but I got it on Amazon for 25 bucks.” I was floored. But I knew from my past experiences with the all-flattering Wrangler pants that finding unexpected wardrobe gems on Amazon is (bizarrely) possible. She texted me the link and I ordered two — a faux-crocodile white and patent black — before I even made it home.

Considering the absurdly cheap price, the quality of the purses are not half bad. They’re a lot shinier and sturdier than I expected them to be. So much so that I’m not sure the average person would clock just how cheap they really are. They’re also the perfect size — not too big, not too small — so they can hold all of your necessities without having to play an exhausting game of bag Tetris. Of the two I purchased, the patent black definitely looks higher quality — the faux leather is super glossy and the tortoise-shell chain is a nice touch. But I still find myself reaching for my white “crocodile” often — it’s a bright, stark white that pairs well with almost all my fuzzy winter coats and is particularly reminiscent of the baguette bags I’d coveted as a tween in the early 2000s.

As far as longevity goes, these bags hold up pretty well. Sure, I’ve noticed the tortoise-shell handle on my black purse unhooks from time to time, and the zipper on my white one has gotten caught on the sides more than once. But hey, for $27, I’d definitely say you’re getting your money’s worth!

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

I Can’t Stop Wearing These $27 Baguette Bags