Somewhere after the early '00s, shoulder bags got a little lost at the forefront of fashion. Once perfectly nestled in the armpit of every stylish lady—from Sarah Jessica Parker to Gabrielle Union—the shoulder bag was perhaps deemed too practical. So instead, we toted. We clutched. We belted our bags. We even carried baskets in the crook of our arms. Meanwhile, the humble shoulder bag waited patiently for a triumphant return.
When I told my flatmate that Vogue had declared "the best bag of the season is somewhere in between the length of a can of hairspray and a landline phone," she laughed. She told me that outside of fashion, shoulder bags haven't gone anywhere. Case in point? Lorelei Gilmore. She wore shoulder bags all the way through seven seasons of Gilmore Girls and the Netflix special. Now that's commitment.
But experts in the fashion world insist shoulder bags are only now making a comeback. My friend who is a buyer says, "We have seen the rise of the shoulder bag to go along with the recent trend of '90s nostalgia."
"The shoulder bag offers the hands-free option," my friend told me. We saw this with the return of the Dior Saddle and Fendi Baguette but expect other classics to return, like Gucci's Jackie bag. For his spring/summer 2019 collection, Simon Porte Jacquemus (aka the man almost solely responsible for the biggest accessory trends of 2018: micro bags and that one giant hat) sent a massive bag down the runway that went viral. But alongside that bag were a number of—you guessed it—shoulder bags. Cue the Instagram set. Shoulder bags no longer live in the darkest corners of closets. They will be everywhere.
Whilst the glitzy smaller versions of the shoulder bag like the Fendi Baguette (loved by Paris Hilton, for example) have been at the beginning of this born-again trend, expect to see classic, bigger styles to rise in popularity too. To get ahead of the look now, we'd suggest channelling Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy.
For further proof, here we have model Bella Hadid juggling life: holding onto her boyfriend, The Weeknd, and a bag of macarons. This was all made possible thanks to her hands-free shoulder bag. It's practical, chic and can sometimes hold a book without being bulky. So how are shoulder bags only justnow coming back? What have we fashion people been doing to survive without them this whole time? I, for one, am ready for shoulder bags to come back and stay.