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Save or Splurge: The Best Designer and High Street Bags Of The Summer

Image: Selfridges

Which one of these 2019 trending women’s bag styles is worth the investment? Take a look at our high street alternatives, and decide for yourself…

If there’s one item that can always make an outfit feel instantly elevated, it’s a designer handbag. Honestly, even a simple multi-pack white tee and your favourite high street jeans could be utterly transformed with the addition of an eye-catching and instantly-recognisable luxury bag! But let’s not kid ourselves, a designer bag of any kind is a BIG purchase. But, if statistics are anything to go by, it’s an investment worth making. The evidence? Brands like Chanel have been proven to be a better financial investment than gold, whilst the value of a classic Birkin bag increases on average by almost 15% a year. A tempting and pretty convincing argument if you’ve got the cash, but what about those (most!) of us on a sensible budget, eh?

Often the high street can fall short in the handbag department, but with brilliant brands like Monsoon, Topshop and River Island offering more high quality catwalk-inspired styles than ever before, not only can you now assemble an elegant accessories wardrobe on a budget, but there are even certain summer bag trends that will look expensive no matter how much or little you spend. 

So which bags are currently on our wish list, and which are worth spending the big bucks for? The best high end arm candy for SS19 includes super-sized totes, dinky little mini bags in every imaginable colour, animal prints, perfect summer straw and, of course, some flashy designer logos. However, some of the high street imitators are SO sensational that you can tap into the trend for well under £100.

Will you opt for the original (and therefore, arguably the best) Chloe C bag that you’ve been dreaming about for months? Or will you snap up something similar for a fraction of the cost? We’ve pulled together some of our favourite bag designs of the summer, alongside their affordable counterparts, so you can make an informed decision for yourself. Discover the edit below!

Now You C Me

Chloé's new initial bag might just be our favourite of the Parisian's brands It bags to date - featuring a ginormous "C" on the front, it’s an instant hit! Particularly if your name is Chloe, Caroline, Claire, Catherine…! If you’re obsessed but can’t quite stretch, you can save a whopping £1000 by opting for Coach’s substitute. But it’s not just the C bag making its mark, as Chloe’s signature Faye satchel is still high on the hot list. Luckily for us, it’s spawned some seriously chic imitations too, including the Topshop Ocean bag.

Brilliant Basket 

Basket bags, whether hard wicker or soft straw, are no longer just for the beach—this year, they’ve become an absolute essential for the city too. The fashion crowd may favour Loewe’s Ibiza-inspired crochet basket bag, but we think this Debenham raffia style is a more than worthy match for under £60.

Buy now from Selfridges

Out of stock

Animal Magic

Animal print bags - particularly snake - have been one of the runaway trends of the season with luxury names leading the pack. Feel free to treat yourself to something instantly iconic rom Bulgari, but no-one will judge if you opt for the more affordable (but no less impactful!) Topshop alternative.

Buy now from Selfridges

Out of stock

I Love PU

Transparent accessories are sticking around for summer, with Staud’s Instagrammable style reaching cult status. But don’t worry if you haven’t got the money this month, there’s plenty of trendy see-through styles to rival.