From handbag artisans Via La Moda.

Buy the best that you can afford
As opposed to a statement dress that is unlikely to be worn again, an investment bag can be used on multiple occasions and even be passed down from generation to generation.
Choose leather
Leather is one of the few things in life that actually gets better with age. It lives with you and develops its own character with time. Leather is an organic product with properties such as flexibility and durability. It should have a soft, inviting touch, which naturally appeals to the senses.
Highly skilled craftsmen understand that every hide deserves respect, and therefor pay special attention to every step in the process – this ultimately reflects in the quality of the bag.
How to identify a long lasting bag?
Identifying a long lasting bag can be challenging – here are a few points to consider
• A long lasting handbag will have a good durable quality lining as most women carry “everything-but-the-kitchen-sink” in their bags. A more substantial lining is less prone to becoming threadbare.
• Solid and straight stitching using a good strong thread – generally the spacing between the stitches is a good indication, the closer together the better. Check the bag’s stress points for reinforced stitching detail.
• Good quality zips. One of the most important components of most handbags is the zipper. Many zips give way when the cloth along their edges has worn out. So look for a hardy zipper-tape fabric and smooth opening and closing function.
• All hardware should be securely attached and be size appropriate for the carrying capacity and weight of the bag. This is important as everyday wear will put metal components to the test.
• Handles are the first impression when selecting a bag and you want it to be a good one. They should feel comfortable in hand – neither too bulky nor too flimsy. Often one handle fits in underneath the other – engineered for comfort.
Select the colour and style carefully
Bright colours and flamboyant bags are exciting and can accentuate your look but may limit you in the long term as fashion changes. Consider a neutral colour such as black, brown, taupe or grey in order to get the most out of your bag. A neutral and timeless bag never goes out of style.
Keep it simple
Subtlety will stand the test of time and is much more chic and elegant. Understated designs clear of excessive branding elements speak of style and class, and will be relevant for a much longer period of time.

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