In every category, from clothes to hair to makeup, we have spotted the hottest 2017 runway trends, but I gotta admit – the spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends have me wishing for an endless paycheck. For fashion week, designers went above and beyond, designing truly innovative bags that really caught our attention – at times, much more so than the rest of the collection.
A lot of designers showed their incredible variety, with a ton of different styles of bags that fit into a few different spring/ summer 2017 bag trends. We saw a ton of gorgeous print, innovative shapes, as well as some timeless classics – and we have gathered all of them for you here: the best spring/ summer 2017 handbags!
#1. Teeny Tiny Thumbelina Purses
I guess some girls just like it small? At the very least, this is true when it comes to one of the spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends. What could fit in these tiny bags? A lipstick and a few coins, but little else.
We saw a lot of these tiny bags paired with larger ones, perhaps to be used as a separate coin purse (or if you’re in California, Massachusetts, or Nevada, they are the perfect size to carry your newly legalized stash.) We saw a few miniature, leather matchbox purses at Hermes, perhaps in the hope that they would inspire a more minimalist lifestyle.
At Valentino, we also saw some tiny purses, but with an edge thanks to a chain strap, and a more heavy-duty material. The cutest teeny purse for summer 2017 was at Fendi, in a baby pink shade with a tiny flower print, and the most adorable little metal handle.
A few other collections that played with tiny bag designs included Dries Van Noten, Coach, Chloe, and Louis Vuitton.
#2. Larger Than Life Duffle Bags
The designers at fashion week know their audience. For some women – especially fashion conscious women – style is often more important than practicality. However, even when practicality is necessary, it’d certainly better be stylish.
That is why large travel & duffle bags are one of the spring/ summer 2017 bag trends. After all, when chic women go on summer vacation, they better have the space in their bags for all of their beauty and fashion must haves!
At Balenciaga, we saw a large variety of exceptional travel bags for summer 2017. Some were quite beautiful and loud, featuring a gorgeous floral print (another of the season’s print trends), while others were a solid one color.
At Gucci, we saw large, exotic flowers, in a striking symmetrical print. At Michael Kors, we saw some right proper purses, but made of a material that looked like woven straw.
#3. Metallic & Shiny Bags
A metallic finish is a dangerous choice, because it is so iconic as an ‘80s style. However, when blended with other fabrics and unique shapes, it suddenly becomes modern and unique, so it is no surprise that we saw quite a few shiny bags as part of the spring 2017 bag trends.
At Marc Jacobs, we saw some gorgeous metallic bucket bags in shades of blue and gold. The fabric looked as though it had been folded, and the unique texture worked very well with the sheen.
At Delpozo, we saw a bag design reminiscent of a jellyfish – semi transparent, shiny, with an opalescent sheen. We also saw some gorgeous metallic magenta, red, teal, and red saddle bags for summer 2017 at Trussardi.
#4. Add on the Attachments
This is the first of the adorable spring 2017 handbag trends. We saw little attachments and adornments all over the purses on the runway, and we really did love them – who cares if they are kind of useless?
Both at the Fendi and Rebecca Minkoff shows, there were big balls of fur attached to the leather bags. In Fendi’s case it was very playful, with the balls of fuzz taking on different shapes.
At Moschino, the tassel attachments were especially creative, and went really well with the “paper doll” theme of the show. What seemed like tassel attachments on the purses at first turned out to be 2D prints.
Never a brand to blend into the crowd, the attachments at Maison Margiela were large and bedazzled. At Altuzarra, the attachments kept to the fruit theme, with little cherry attachments, as well as tassels.
We also saw cool handbag attachments at Coach and Versus Versace.
#5. Drawstring Topped Bag
Some of the designers chose to showcase summer 2017 handbag trends that were more on the casual side. This is certainly welcome, since the summer season is when bags are often meant to carry daytime essentials without looking too expensive or formal. The drawstring design is certainly on the casual side, but it has a certain world traveller charm.
On the Derek Lam runway, the warm toned suede drawstring bags fit in seamlessly with the simple, warm, and clean design of the rest of the collection. At Marni, we saw a few clean, drapey leather bags with drawstrings on top, and even one white leather bag with drawstring both on the top and the bottom.
We saw cinch topped bags of this sort on the Altuzarra runway, where they were paired with a few other trends: tassels, as well as cute prints and snake skin.
At Attico, the bags were ultra simple, made of delicate fabrics and a magnificent print, and the drawstrings were extra long so they could be wrapped around the wrist or attached to a belt.
We also some cinch-topped bags for summer 2017 at Givenchy, J.W. Anderson, Alexander Wang, Trussardi, and others.
#6. Handbags with Springtime Floral Prints and Appliqués
A floral print done the wrong way can really age an outfit, but when it’s well planned, the effect is perfectly fresh and springy. That is why floral prints made it into our spring/ summer 2017 handbags list. Listing all of the designers that made use of gorgeous floral prints would be tough, but here are a few of the floral highlights.
In the Tory Burch collection, we saw box bags with pastel floral print that had a clean ‘60s mod vibe. Michael Kors chose to run the gamut of various floral options, including leather appliqués in the same shade as the bag itself, floral appliqués of a different material, floral prints all over the bag.
On the Monique Lhuillier runway, the take on the floral spring 2017 bag trends was soft, with white 3D flowers attached to a small and delicate cream colored bag.
#7. Channel the Jungle with Animal Prints and Furs
While many designers had their summer 2017 handbags feature various types of animals, others chose to only stick to the animal’s fur. PETA is usually not a fan of leather bags, but they like the fur ones even less. Despite that, animal print and fur bags still make it unto this list of spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends.
The first is a solid leopard print number at Celine. The wild fur contrasted with the sleek rectangular shape of the briefcase style bag.
At Lanvin, we saw quite a few zebra print bags, as well as at Sportmax. However, at Sportmax, we know no zebras were harmed, seeing as the stripes were in loud shades of blue and red.
At Prada, we saw plush fur blended with pop-printed leather, in a really bright and attention-grabbing contrast.
#8. Handbags with Hippie Dippy Trippy Prints
A few designers this season wanted to create bags that would channel more than just the style of an older time, but would totally channel the experience. That is why we saw a few bag designs that remind us of either a great LSD trip, or the last time we saw an Alejandro Jodorowsky film.
At Marc Jacobs, quite a few of the bags featured trippy, Picasso-esque designs with floaty eyes, spaceships, and stars, in really bright, clashing primary and secondary colors.
The Oscar de la Renta collection featured ‘60s style paisley printed bags for 2017 and clutches, in shades that matched the outfits in the rest of the collection. Lastly, some of the prints at Versace looked like a real drug trip.
#9. Bags with Fringe and Tassels
Harken back to the Wild West, with tasseled spring 2017 bags. We saw many variations on tassels, also as attachments separate from the bags, but where they really stood out was when they hung all along the bag, giving everything an edgy, devil-may-care feel.
At Coach, the tassels all along the sides of the bags blended perfectly with the suede material from which the bags were made. In some cases the tassels were even studded with a bit of metal, for a more punk look.
At Elie Saab, the fringe trend was combined with metallic materials, for a gorgeous effect. The silver and gold tassels hung from the bags, in a shimmery, near fluid effect that was fun and classy.
We also saw 2017 handbags with tassels at Giorgio Armani, and quite a few attachments previous mentioned took the form of tassels.
#10. Snakeskin Isn’t Poisonous
Snakeskin bags for summer 2017 were all over the runway this season. In fact, listing all of the designers that opted for snakeskin as part of their collection of spring/ summer 2017 handbags would be arduous, and perhaps not even interesting. However, a few of the bags featuring this classic type of handbag material did stand out more than others.
At Altuzarra, for example, the snakeskin was topped with fruit pattern embroidery, and on a few of the bags it was actually combined with a few areas of just regular leather.
At Carven, the snakeskin bags were a beautiful mixture of gray, black, and baby blue, for a strangely soft effect. Snakeskin handbags for 2017 also appeared at Chanel, Fendi, Givenchy, Miu Miu, and Celine.
#11. Bags with Chain Straps
At Valentino, the chain straps we saw came in brass and gunmetal shades, and contrasted interestingly with the more classy leather and suede styles of the body of the bags.
On the Bottega Veneta runway, the chain handles we saw were less industrial, and classier, fitting very synergistically with the warm-tone leather bags.
At John Galliano, the use of chains was quite excessive, and they punked up the wearer’s outfits quite a bit, since the bags were slung across the shoulder and hung from the front.
We also saw some summer 2017 bags with chain straps at Mulberry and Versace.
#12. Bags with Rounded Handles
It is always interesting when a few designers seem to land on the same brand new summer makeup trends 2017 design choice independently of each other, which was the case with the round, firm handle spring 2017 handbag trends.
At Chloe, the circular bag handle was the predominant style. What we saw was a large, golden circle attached to the bag by a little clasp.
We saw it on one of the summer 2017 bags at Giorgio Armani – a black, circular handle, and a square bag printed with a cool-toned pattern. Even at Givenchy, we saw a rounded plastic handle in a retro print attached to a black, snakeskin leather bag.
#13. Green Is In with Reusable Shopping Bags
Single-use items are out, and reusable is in, and the summer 2017 bags are certainly no different. As grocery stores all across the world start banning plastic bags, the need for stylish reusable grocery bags become all the more pressing. That is why it is no surprise that we are seeing tote bags as one of the summer 2017 bag trends.
On the Celine runway, we saw a massive crisp-white tote bag that could contain all of the best fresh products you could find at the farmer’s market.
The choice for crisp, fresh colors was also apparent on the Sonia Rykiel and Sacai catwalks. Both collections featured large, white totes with black accents.
The classiest tote was at Armani – it was solid black, with a leather orange handle, and it could probably work both as a day purse and as a shopping bag. We also saw tote-style bags at Miu Miu and Paul Smith.
#14. Sideways Bags
It takes a clever designer to create a bag that will be comfortable to hold sideways, without throwing your items all over the place, or causing a spill once the bag is finally opened. However, it certainly stands out as one of the more off-kilter spring/ summer 2017 bag trends, and we pray that these beautiful bags that are meant to be carried sideways were well planned enough to be convenient.
At Salvatore Ferragamo, these sideways bags were actually somewhere between a bag and a clutch, with a wrist strap, made of brightly colored leather.
#15. Say It with Bags
Some of the summer 2017 bags had a message to share – for the most part the messages were not profound, but we can’t deny that a bag is a more intriguing place to share insights than a T-shirt. For some designers, it was strictly a clever way of adding some branding, while others opted for real words and phrases.
At Dolce & Gabbana, some of the bags represented different kinds of restaurant signs, including “Pizzeria,” “Bar,” and “Gelateria.”
At Loewe, the cryptic “see u later” bag was especially graphic, and reminded of a sassy T-shirt. Many of the other bags prominently displayed the name of the brand.
At Dior, we saw an almost Louis Vuitton-esque dedication to showcasing their brand on their bags, especially along the straps. We also saw a new contraction of their logo: “J’Dior”.
Many of the summer 2017 purses on the Gucci catwalk displayed the phrases “Future” or “Modern Future.”
#16. Think Outside the Box with Box Purses
Solid box handbags always seemed like the height of avant-garde ingenuity to me, even if they are not necessarily a new thing. They have a way of portraying just how unique and forward-thinking the people who carry them are, so it does not surprise me that they are another of the spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends.
At Hermes, we saw gorgeous box purses – both tiny ones, to fit into the Thumbelina bag trend, as well as medium sized ones that reminded us of high fashion lunch boxes.
At Dior, we saw box bags that were made of a solid metal, were quite thin, and were printed with designs that reminded us of tarot cards. At Thom Browne, alternating with dog bags, there were box bags that were medium-sized, and covered in a square pattern print.
There were also some box purses at Louis Vuitton, Mulberry, and Dolce & Gabbana.
Personally, this is one of those spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends we would rather avoid. Not because we don’t like how it looks – this is probably the most glamorous of the summer 2017 bags, after all.
Unfortunately, the kinds of events, where clutches tend to make an appearance (fancy dress, with lots of dancing and drinking), are exactly the kinds of events where if our bag is not attached to us by a strap, we’ll probably leave it behind.
At Louis Vuitton, we saw a lot of classy black clutches, with gold details, as well as many small purses that were held by hand despite having some decorative straps. At Oscar de la Renta, some of the clutches were longer, and covered in bohemian prints, while others were quite tiny and delicate.
At Stella McCartney, clutches took the form of squared little pouches, while at Prada, they were edgy thanks to visible zippers and large flowers.
There is nothing better than an awesome backpack – it’s like instant youth, in the form of a bag. Designers opted for all kinds of backpacks for their spring/ summer 2017 collections, whether sporty and casual or glammed up.
At Versace, the backpacks had a rock climbing chic, thanks to a mixture of plastic straps and silver attachments. At Maison Margiela, we saw backpacks made of a plush material in shades of white and orange that were definitely perfect for a casual day, but without the sporty vibe of other bags.
At Fendi, we saw some two-in-ones that were styled like subtle backpacks, but also sported large straps, so they could be worn both ways.
#19. Fanny Packs
A lot of people like to express surprise when fanny packs make it unto trends lists, but you know what? Brave designers this season did such an excellent job resurrecting the reputation of this practical invention that they certainly deserve to be on this list of spring/ summer 2017 bag trends.
At Rag & Bone, sleek wallet-sized fanny packs made of black leather ruled the runway. At DKNY, the fanny packs were made especially for the futuristic android hunter – they were bold and big, in solid colors and black straps, and their look was extremely clean and sharp.
At the Kenzo show, fanny packs were made to match the outfits, in a variety of designs, but the most striking was a graphic, shimmery, black, silver and magenta one. At Stella McCartney, the fanny packs were maybe closer to belts with pockets, in earthy shades of leather.
#20. Woven Picnic Basket Bags
The spring season is the perfect time for picnics, which is why woven bags that remind us a little bit of baskets are one of the spring 2017 bag trends.
One of the loveliest purses at Dolce & Gabbana is a square, solid-looking bag covered in light straw. At Michael Kors, we saw a half-moon shaped picnic-style purse with a wooden handle.
On the Charlotte Olympia runway, the spring picnic motif ran strong with lots of woven baskets, including a classic lunch basket painted to look like a watermelon.
At Tory Burch, the timeless satchel bag style was paired with a woven straw style material, making for a lovely summery take on these spring/ summer 2017 handbags perfect for picnic.
#21. Bizarre Shapes
The spring/ summer 2017 bag trends really stretched our conceptions of what a bag is supposed to look like, and some of the creations were truly unexpected and extraordinary. Whether they were convenient, we are not so sure.
Balenciaga was about more than just oversized bags – they were also about featuring a brand new shape: a weird pouf that could double as a bag and as a pillow stool.
At Alexander Wang, the new bag shape was on the smaller side of things, but no less outstanding. The bags we saw were a fascinating take on the bucket bag shape – maybe barrel or flowerpot shape is the best way to describe them. The handles came together at the top, cinching the opening together.
On the Issey Miyake runway, bags reminded us of gourds, with their full round bodies, and tapered off tops. At Hermes, cylindrical bags covered in three layers of fur were what really caught everyone’s eyes.
#22. Is It a Toy? Is It Bird? No! It’s a Bag!
A bag is the perfect accessory for when you want to get really playful. It is totally external from the rest of the outfit, so you don’t have to worry too much about clashing. That is why designers choosing to get really silly with their summer 2017 handbags makes sense to me, and as far as silly goes, having bags look like characters is the best way.
Having a bag shaped like an animal or a creature is like a grownup way of carrying a doll – and if anyone judges? Well, we don’t see them carrying an original Chanel or Thom Browne.
The art of camouflage is as important as it is ancient. We can think of many situations when having a stealth bag is important… okay, maybe only one – to sneak our snacks into the movie theatre. What can I say? We’re pretty tame! However, these summer 2017 bags masquerading as other things during the fashion week were anything but subtle.
At Moschino, bags were camouflaged as pill containers, teddy bears, and even one purse shaped as a backpack. To match with the marching band theme at the Dolce & Gabbana show, many of the bags took the shape of drums, guitars, a tiny piano, and as a camouflage combo breaker, there was a Rubik’s cube.
On the Alice + Olivia runway, a glamorous cartoon lady with sunglasses featured heavily both on bags and in the rest of the collection, while cute dachshund dogs were spotted at Thom Browne, with a red and dark blue leaf print, or a plaid white and peach print.
At Chanel, we saw many different styles of purses, falling into a few of the spring 2017 bag trends including drawstring tops, metallics, and snakeskin, but the cute matchbox robot bag totally stole the show. The robot bag was black, smiley, and the perfect size for a cellphone and a bit of cash – in other words, your perfect techno sidekick for a night out on the town.
One of our favorite summer 2017 bags in the Charlotte Olympia collection was a heavily lipsticked, fruity lady. Lastly, at Gucci, we saw golden animal face appliques attached to the purses, in what is likely to be the most luxurious iteration of this trend. At J.W. Anderson, we saw a blue bucket bag with a fuzzy ape face frowning on its front.
#23. Hand Held Side-Strap Bags
The breakout innovation of the spring/ summer 2017 bags is these new semi-clutches that we saw pioneered both at Louis Vuitton and Dior. These bags were held the same way as clutches, but instead of being totally strapless, they had one thick handle across the slide. The wearer can simply slide their hand through the strap, and then know that their ultra classy party bag won’t be easily lost.
At Louis Vuitton, these bags came in snakeskin with the handles a different color from the rest of the bag. At Dior, the bags and straps were all made of the same leather material, and many even had longer shoulder straps that were left unused.
#24. The Most Glamorous Hobos Around
I think these spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends might be the only context where the word “hobo” is not just okay, but kind of awesome. We saw a ton of different takes on this old school bag design, from the totally innovative to the fairly traditional.
On the traditional end of things were the leather hobo bags at Nina Ricci, in striped, solid, and square patterns. At Givenchy and Max Mara, the hobo bags were anything but dumpy, thanks to luxurious suedes and leathers.
#25. Satchel Bags
Satchel bags are the perfect choice, as far as androgynous, utilitarian spring 2017 handbag trends go. They can fit anything from books to tablets to other necessities. We saw a lot of different takes on the satchel bag this season.
The satchel bags at Anna Sui were truly gorgeous – the leather had been covered in delicate floral designs that had been carved into them. The satchel bags at Prada were classy, retro two-toned leather numbers – perfect for the savvy traveller that knows how to pack light.
Which of these awesome spring/ summer 2017 handbag trends do you like best? Comment and let us know!
Photos courtesy of Vogue, Livingly
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