7 Handbags That Look Really Expensive Pt. 2

Style Blogger Stephanie Hill features 7 Handbags That Look Really Expensive Pt. 2 on The Style Bungalow

Fashion Blogger Stephanie Hill features 7 Handbags That Look Really Expensive Pt. 2 on The Style Bungalow

Stephanie Hill features 7 Handbags That Look Really Expensive Pt. 2 on The Style Bungalow

When someone asks me what I did between landing my dream ballet career (unexpectedly ended after two years), working in PR and starting my blog, I usually answer with: “I juggled a bunch of freelance jobs to make ends meet and learned quickly…” It’s a little vague, but it sums up the fact that my 5-10-year plan had been uprooted and I was forced to figure out what I wanted to do with my life… now that I no longer had ballet as a career path. It was as if I was handed a blank page I didn’t anticipate — but a blank page is also a door. Though, I wasn’t quite sure then, I had an inkling of what the next step could be.

By default, I had to reset my priorities — discovered what it is I was passionate about and started my blog. My budget was tight, I didn’t have a lot of money to spend on clothing and accessories, so I challenged myself to become an expert at making my outfits look more expensive than they were…a lesson I still apply today because as my fiance says, “Money doesn’t grow in our backyard on trees.”

It’s all about investing wisely, cliche I know. But the more you focus less on trends and more on seasonless, classic pieces (accessories included) the easier it becomes to use what you have and make it look expensive – every time you open your closet. 

Lifestyle Blogger Stephanie Hill features 7 Handbags That Look Really Expensive Pt. 2 on The Style Bungalow

Lifestyle Blogger Stephanie Hill features 7 Handbags That Look Really Expensive Pt. 2 on The Style Bungalow

I could talk about this for days, but your attention is short (#same). So, let’s start with handbags. Today I’m rounding up seven bags from Brahmin that look more expensive than they actually are (including some I already own and have styled in the past). 

1. Mod Lorelei Ombre Melbourne

I welcomed the Mod Lorelei in Ombre Melbourne (I also have it in this color!) back in August. I love this one because of its size, luxe texture and modern design. The colors transition from beige to burnt orange, allowing me to pair it with so many looks. The hardware is heavy (love) and looks like jewelry which means you don’t need a lot of accessories. Though petite, it still fits my mask, phone, keys, lipstick. Did I mention it comes in red?

2. Annabeth in Praline Plaza

Hello classic beauty! Just add slingbacks and a midi skirt with the Annabeth bag and you’ll immediately transport back to old Hollywood a la the 1950s. There’s nothing more feminine than this one. Occasionally I tie a silk scarf in a pretty bow to give it more personality…it’s the perfect ivory hue and the texture makes it feel so expensive. When people ask, “is that a vintage bag?” I wink and say, “yes…” 

3. Meloney in Tobacco Douglas

Remember when I used to bring my little white market tote with me everywhere I went? (Think: old school fruit bag turned purse) I loved how the natural rope added a pop of texture, but hated that I couldn’t put anything inside (because it would fall out). The Meloney Douglas is the perfect solution and looks way better than my (now) dingy vintage market bag. The heavy duty canvas is nestled inside a leather weave giving you the same look as a market bag but much more practical. It’s a bit of a splurge, but 100% timeless and you’ll get a lot of use so the cost isn’t so bad when you think about it that way. 

4. Marcella II Daydream Aldridge

Full disclosure: I don’t own this one but I’ve been eyeing it all year because I need a new laptop bag, especially since I travel back and forth from West Palm Beach to Miami so often. Plus, anything with bamboo immediately catches my attention. Something about the sleek white leather with those pretty navy and brown stripes screams classic to me. This style will definitely remain “in style” for years to come. 

5. Mod Camille in Black Palmetto 

Just read the reviews and you’ll understand. 

You’ve probably seen me wear this style a handful of times; I adore the shape, black texture and handles on this one! Just imagine wearing it with an all-white ensemble. The black and white handles are crafted from tortoise resin, adding the perfect pop. (And yes, they’re heavy! That’s how you know it’s good…)

6. Evie in Whiskey Topsail

The Evie makes me smile. I feel like I’m carrying a piece of luggage and have been stopped on many occasions wearing it (I also have it in white). It’s crafted from smooth, vegetable tanned leather that (literally) gets me everytime because it’s the perfect shade of brown. Not too dark; not too light. The kind of brown leather that works with navy and black, making it ultra versatile. Just add a monogrammed luggage tag to make it yours and I promise you won’t have an “Emily in Paris” reaction from others… 

7. Pipp Whiskey Topsail

Last but not least, remember Pipp? Yep, she’s still a hit. I’m all for micro-bags because I’m petite (and large bags look massive on me), but let’s also be practical – it needs to be functional too and roomy enough for credit cards and an iPhone. Pipp continues to have a special place in my closet; happily perked up next to my other luxe crossbodies from Chane…. excuse, me who again? I forgot.

Remember, “If it’s not 100% classic, don’t buy it!” Sticking to this rule through life’s twists and turns like #2020 will not only save you money in the long run, but keep you looking “tres chic,” as Emily’s posh friend Camile would say. 

Oh, and in case you’re looking for more options, I’ve linked more below. Just keep it between you and I, k? 

Xo, Stephanie

BLOUSE: old, Ulla Johnson – similar here, here and here

JEANS: Ksubi (similar style here)


EARRINGS: (c/o) Sezane

BAG: (c/o) Brahmin

[Thank you Brahmin for sponsoring today’s post!]
Photography by Chelsae Anne

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