French design houses Dior and Chloé have served us faithfully for many years, but there's a new bag gang in town, and we're a little bit besotted. Yes, it's true that there will always be an appetite for shiny, logo-clad designer bags, but it seems as though this year the average fashion-lover has been looking for something a little less shouty and a little more low-key.
While anyone can identify Chanel's interlocking Cs or Louis Vuitton's brown checks, it takes a more discerning eye to name-check the new It bags—just think of the clean-lined, inconspicuous designs of brands Wandler, Staud and Danse Lente.
When it comes to the best new bag brands of 2018, the prize has to go to the French. After all, who else delivers chic, low-key designs quite like Gallic girls? From Elleme's crumpled leather to RSVP Paris's neat envelopes, these lesser-known brands are quietly making their presence felt in the feeds of Instagram's most stylish.
Unassuming yet perfectly formed, their versatile designs go with everything from jeans and knitwear to black-tie attire. Also, compared to the average designer tote, they come in at a pretty reasonable price point. They're the perfect Christmas gift to give yourself. Scroll down to see and shop our edit of the four best lesser-known French bag brands.
Based in Paris, Elleme is the up-and-coming accessories brand that has won the hearts of fashion editors across the globe. Recognisable by their colourful, scrunched leather, top-handle styles, these pieces are guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
Created by Parisian couple Leo Dominguez and Violette Polchi in 2013, Léo et Violette might only be five years old, but it has already secured a cult following thanks to its practical yet sleek styles. Expect minimalist, timeless designs that will last season after season.
3. RSVP Paris
If you're searching for cool, clean-lined clutches, then look no further than RSVP Paris. While other brands offer an eclectic selection of styles, RSVP is set apart by its distinctive envelope shape and gold disc detailing. Fun fact: Each piece is individually hot stamped from one to 500 in order of production.
4. Polène Paris
Created by a family trio (a sister and two brothers), Polène Paris is the answer to all your French capsule wardrobe dreams. Its collection is made up of three styles—from the mini Numero Six semicircle clutch to the sizable Numero Un crossbody—all of which come in a spectrum of colours.