Let's introduce each other to brands we may not know (or love yet! ) What is your favorite designer, but not luxury, bag?

  • Which brand of leather goods to choose from?

I got my first premium designer bag when I was in college. It was something I wished for, desired, dreamed about, and worked hard for. As soon as I acquired my mini Saddle Dior bag, all bets were off.

  • Presentation of Telfar Shopping bags

I was addicted to bags for life. At the time, I was still rotating the use of my beloved Dior with other bags, including a Coach bag and a bunch of nylon LeSportsac bags - who remembers? Then, in high school, Rebecca Minkoff became popular and I bought two of her bags, which I incorporated into my rotation. Eventually, I got a second high-end designer bag, a Louis Vuitton Speedy, and my collection kind of took off from there.

I found that the more luxury bags I bought, the less attention I paid to my contemporary bags, even though many of them were large bags that I and others found highly desirable at the time. I guess the luxury of owning luxury bags ended in my early twenties, and even though my collection was much smaller at the time, I just alternated between the few high-end designer bags I owned and put the others aside.

Over the past four or five years, my need to carry only certain bags has dissipated and I've enjoyed diversifying my collection a bit more. I've added several contemporary bags to my collection (full disclosure: some were gifts and some were purchases), and I no longer favor high-end designer bags over everything else.

Currently, I live in a small apartment in Lyon and my bags are stored in every corner of my room. Some are under my bed in a box, some are in my closet in a plastic garbage can, and the ones I grab most often are on the shelves built into my closet.

With most of my collection in storage and out of sight, I sometimes forget how much I have and a recent closet cleanout reminded me how grateful I am to have all the bags I own. Now more than ever, like many others, I am doing my shopping and rediscovering many of my bags.

I thought it would be fun to talk about some of our lesser-known and less expensive bags, since we so often forget about them, both here on Tendance-Sac and in our everyday lives. Some of my favorite contemporary bags are from Mansur Gavriel, Senreve, Little Liffner, and Manu Atelier, but the non-high-end designer bag I use the most is my Nunoo Gina mini bag.

This little Nunoo lady was gifted to me last fall, and as soon as she arrived, I transferred my stuff into the bag. I don't carry much and was able to easily fit my small YSL card wallet, cosmetic case, keys, and iPhone in there and off I went. I received my first compliment on the bag the same day I walked into Reformation, which is a small store, in my neighborhood.

It was love at first and I used it as much, if not more, than some of my branded bags over the next seven months. My particular bag is no longer available, but you can check out more on the brand's website.