When it comes to dressing up, there’s nothing I rely on more than a cute little evening bag. I actually think of them as jewelry, and, since there are soooo many fun little options, they’re an easy way to express personal style.
My evening bag tastes run a little frivolous and quirky, rather than understated or luxurious. The two bags I’ve used the most over the years are a wild, feather-covered bag (that literally goes with jeans just as well as it goes with glamorous full-length dresses, and, in fact, I’ve worn it with both) or my mom’s sparkly purse that she last wore to her own prom. Once again, that vintage bag does really go with everything in my closet.
Looking for sparkle, glam and comfy, cozy outfit ideas for 2022? Browse our holiday style page!
Six Under $50: Little Evening Bags from Amazon
While I still swear by a good cost-per-wear (and my two favorite evening bags have seen plenty of wear), over the last two years I’ve found myself eyeing up a few fun bags at Amazon. These bags hit my note of frivolous, fun and/or quirky, and they’re (temptingly) all under $50.
I’d yet to take the plunge, however, simply assuming that these bags were likely not very well-made. Right? Couldn’t be. So when Amazon reached out asking us to create a few videos for their Amazon Live platform, I figured this was an easy way of satisfying my curiosity.
You can watch my full review of the six bags, here.
left to right: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 (not pictured)
1. The Drop Avalon Small Tote Bag
This faux-leather bag looks juuuuust like my old Clare V Chou Chou (no longer available), but bigger. It’s still small enough to serve as a night-out bag, but the roomy interior means that I can stuff this with a hat, mittens, glasses, etc.
2. The Drop Satin Knotted Handle Bag
Another bag that I’m pretttty sure is spoofing a much more expensive designer one…this bag is really pretty in person. Great color, great shape, and a nonchalantly cool vibe. Also in black.
3. Retro Radio Shape Crossbody
Ridiculous, but in the best possible way. I was surprised by how well-made this bag is: all of the “gems” were perfectly glued on and lined up properly. As I discuss in the video, the chain strap isn’t nearly as cheaply made as it looks in this photo, but the clasp attachments aren’t great.
4. Fluffy Ostrich Feather Clutch
One of my favorite bags from the video. If I didn’t already have a feather bag that looks very similar (and costs much more), I definitely would’ve kept this one. My feather bag has been perking up my outfits for 5+ years now. It really is a timeless way to elevate an outfit, and is one of the few bags that work just as well with ripped jeans as it does with a ball gown (and everything in between).
5. Colorful Floral Clutch
THIS. This handbag was my favorite of the bunch. I love the quirky, vintage vibe, and the unapologetically over-the-top nature of this bag. The flowers are gorgeous in person, and this purse is surprisingly well-made. The back is NOT covered in flowers, and while I was initially bummed, it also means that these flowers won’t catch on your clothing.
6. Floral Appliques Clutch
Same idea as the flower clutch above…just a bit more subdued. Those petals are even more fun in person and I just LOVE this bag. The clasp closure is nice and big and the purse itself is roomy enough for your phone, lipstick & other essentials. This one comes in a bunch of colors…I just might have to snap up the navy.
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I bought that Avalon/Chou Chou dupe this summer for a wedding and LOVED it. The best part, for me, was that it folds down completely flat. Great for traveling or stuffing in another bag or suitcase!