The Luxury List is a monthly column on all things luxury, exploring cult items from heritage brands, tapping the foremost experts in the fashion space, and doing deep dives into the investment pieces that are worth it.
Conversations about designer handbags typically revolve around one specific phrase: "It bags." That saying has been less prominent recently, though, replaced by "quiet-luxury bags" that combine ease, subtlety, and quality craftsmanship without prominent logos. Such discussions are unfolding everywhere from our editor Slack channels to TikTok to The Wall Street Journal. But this isn't to say that these bags are completely unidentifiable despite a lack of branding. Rather, they have details such as signature clasps and unique silhouettes that only astute fashion observers would recognise.
Though there are a number of cult bags that fall into the camp of quiet luxury, Savette is a noteworthy newcomer. According to Net-a-Porter Market Director Libby Page, sleek silhouettes from Savette are resonating with shoppers, making it one of the only brands to successfully break into the luxury-bag market across the retailer in a long time. This signals a rise in the quiet-luxury category overall, as the label joins the leagues of investment brands such as Hermès, Khaite, Celine, and Prada that are as quiet as they are cool. Here, see the best low-key quiet-luxury bags that are primed to be in your wardrobe for many years ahead.
Hermès bags are famous for their long waiting lists and mysterious buying practices as much as they're known for their cult status among fashion's most in-the-know insiders. Kelly bags, in particular, are a style that is practically free of branding and known for their expert craftsmanship.
The metal clasp on Celine's Triomphe bags takes inspiration from the metal chain surrounding the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. Otherwise, the bags retain clean and sleek lines, making them seasonless, functional, and beautiful pieces.
The Row's signature understated minimalism has been distilled into the brand's latest Sofia bag—an unfussy, simple leather crossbody bag that is already cropping up in the most luxurious (and stylish) closets.
The Prada Re-Edition 1995 bag was famously carried by Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy—a fashion icon known for her quiet-luxury style. It was brought back by Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons, and the co-designers ushered the timeless bag back into the fashion space, making it one of the key investment buys to own.
With Matthieu Blazy at the helm of Bottega Veneta, the brand has reached a new level of buzz and has distilled some of its archival design elements (including woven leather) into some truly seasonless bags, including the Arco Tote.