Accessories Forecast: Micro Trend Maxi Bags

Accessories Forecast: Micro Trend Maxi Bags

Finally, we can fit our smart phones back in our bags. Don’t get me wrong, I love a fabulous handbag, in fact I may have a small addiction. My cure? More accessories. This year’s micro trend is the maxi bags. The mini bags were defiantly popular for a hot minute. But like everything in fashion, it recycles itself and moves on to the next thing. That is what trends are all about. I must be completely honest here; this is a trend most of us can get behind. 

On a typical day, the first thing most of us do before we even leave the house is grab our bag. And to feel prepared for the day we want to have everything we need in one place. With the mini bag faze it made carrying your essentials rather difficult. I mean we couldn’t even fit our sunglasses, or mobile devices inside. How annoying can that be? Yes, I love a 90s trend who doesn’t? The micro trend for maxi bags, is like a savour in the accessories department. What is even more incredible is how there are so many different styles to fit your aesthetic. 

Ellen Gives Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen Their Favorite Accessories
Photo: The Olsen Twins on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in 2010

If we look back in the early 2000’s The Olsen Twins known for their luxe brand The Row, were the first fashionistas to rock the maxi bag trend. Ellen DeGeneres on her famous show The Ellen Show even had a laugh when they were guests on her show. Joking aside though, I can see why this trend isn’t going away any time soon. It is practical and just has a nice look over your arm. And you can dress up a maxi bag or wear one casual intergrading this bag into your individual wardrobe.

Bottega Veneta Jodie Bag
Photo: Bottega Veneta Jodie bag.

And there is a large amounts of brands taking notice. Bottega Veneta’s Jodie bag is the perfect hobo style maxi bag for that casual but chic city type. The Row has an incredible selection, and most famously the Chanel Maxi flap bag. It may not be a tote or a hobo, but it fits in this accessorises category. 


THE ROW Margaux 17 Bag
Photo: The Row Margaux 17 Maxi Bag


The term “purse” originally referred to a small bag for holding coins in many English-speaking countries, it is still used to referee to a small money bag.

A “handbag” is a larger accessory that holds objects beyond currency, such as personal items. American English typically uses the terms purse and handbag interchangeably. The term handbag began appearing in the early 1900s. Initially, it was most often used to refer to men’s hand-luggage. Women’s bags grew larger and more complex during this period, and the term was attached to this accessory. 


During the ancient period bags were utilised to carry various items including flint, tools, supplies, weapons, and currency. Early examples of these bags have been uncovered in Egyptian burial sites. And were made of leather with two straps or handles for carrying or suspending from a stick. The ancient Greeks made use of leather, papyrus and linen purses known as byrsa to store coins, which is the etymological origin of the English word ‘purse’. The emergence of money further inspired the creation of drawstring purses, most hung from a belt or kept in clothing folds. 

 Modern Origin 

Until the late 1700s, both men and women carried bags. Early modern Europeans wore purses for one sole purpose: to carry coins. Purses were made of soft fabric or leather and were worn by men as often as ladies; the Scottish sporran is a survival of this custom. In the 17th century, young girls were taught embroidery as a necessary skill for marriage; this also helped them make very stunning handbags. 

By the late 18th century, fashions in Europe were moving towards a slender shape for these accessories, inspired by the silhouettes of Ancient Greece and Rome. Women wanted purses that would not be bulky or untidy in appearance,so reticules were designed. Reticules were made of fine fabrics like silk and velvet, carried with wrist straps. First becoming popular in France, they crossed over into Britain, where they became known as "indispensables." Men, however, did not adopt the trend. They used purses and pockets, which became popular in men’s trousers.

The modern purse, clutch, pouch, or handbag came about in England during the Industrial Revolution, in part due to the increase in travel by railway.

20th Century 

When handbags started to become popularised, they were heavily criticised as it was seen as unfeminine. In the early 20th century, Sigmund Freud argued that purses were sexually suggestive as the structure of the purse symbolized female genitalia and sexuality. Before handbags, pockets were secured inside of a woman's dress which held personal items and retrieving items was done discreetly and modestly. Due to handbags being carried in the open, the accessory exposed a woman's personal items. Freud compared women retrieving items from their purse as a representation of masturbation. According to Freud's argument, women who carried purses openly displayed their sexuality due to the sexual symbolism of the purse. 

As handbags grew into the mainstream in the 20th century, they began to transform from purely practical items to symbols of the wearer's wealth and worth in society. The styles, materials, prices, and, most importantly, the brand names of purses and handbags became just as (if not more) valuable than the functionality of the bags themselves. Handbags transitioned from being seen as unfeminine, to being seen as specifically feminine and unmasculine. 

While women's bags served as fashion accessories not meant to hold more than a few personal and beauty items (feminine things), men's bags stayed more in the realm of briefcases: square, hard-edged, plain; containing items pertaining to the "man's world": business-related items, documents, files, stationery, and pens. The gendered division between the personal bag and the business bag meets in the middle with the unisex alms purse originating in the Middle Ages meant to carry coins to donate to the church or the poor. The charitable symbolism of the alms purses later carried over to women's handbags in general; a woman carrying a bag was seen as upper class and therefore potentially using the bag to hold her donations.

Modern era 

When it comes to the handbag today, it can be looked at as one of the most important accessory anyone can own. Not only does it make your outfit look elevated, but you can also buy so many different styles for any occasion. Some people buy a work bag, casual, and even a dressy bag for special occasions. The term ‘handbag addict’ is a real term that most women have. There is even luxe YouTubers that are dedicated to this term. And what is the best cure? More handbags of course. Even when you look on social media, besides the outfit your eyes instantly go and focus on the handbag. It is an innocent situation, but it can be fun to explore as well for your own capsule wardrobe. 

Move over mini, maxi bags are the new it bags and here to stay.

Your Standout Piece 

Bottega Veneta Sizes (Medium, Large, Maxi) Hobo Bag
Photo: Getty Images 

Make the maxi bag your standout piece to really pull your entire outfit together. Go for a pop of colour for a vivid touch. And don’t forget to have it be your standout piece. When in doubt keep it simple, classic, and fun. Go for a hobo or tote. But if you really want to dress it up, you can go for a chain silhouette.


High-End Faves 

Chanel Maxi Silver Handbag
Photo: Getty Images 

Every high-end luxury brand carries a maxi style bag. And if you feel the budget is far too much to justify the price point another option is the consignment market. The most trusted I have personally worked with and shopped is The Real Real and Fashionphile. They also accept returns, so you are good as gold. 

Chanel Maxi 

Chanel Vintage Maxi Flap Bag

This isn’t a joke of the day. But when I think about maxi bags, for some reason the Chanel Maxi bag comes to mind. I suppose because it is the bigger version of the classic flap, and the vintage early 90s version is one of my personal favourites. If you want to stop traffic for all the right reasons, I recommend this bag. If it is good enough for  Victoria Beckham, then you know it’s a fashionistas must have bag.

Victoria Beckham Chanel Vintage Maxi Flap Bag
Photo: Getty Images 

It's Better than The Mini  

iamhearte maxi bags
Photo: YSL Maxi Bag 

This is a proven fact. It really is better than the mini. Not only does it look so chic, but you can use it to fit your lifestyle, and it is practical while still having that ‘it-bag’ status. You can fit things in it, so you don’t have to strategically figure out how you plan to pack your bag for the day. I have seen so many people, attempting to see what they can’t bring with them because of the size of their handbag. Why skip taking your sunglasses, keys, purse/wallet, id, credit cards, and even a water bottle to keep hydrated throughout the day. The micro maxi bag trend is just a no brainer, and it is an incredible accessory this season.


Shop the maxi handbags here.