When Handbag Heaven approached us to do a review of one of their bags, I was psyched. I’ve browsed these “discount” sites before and contemplated purchasing a bag but just never went through it, feeling unsure of the quality. However, because Handbag Heaven generously offered to provide us with a bag of our choice for this review, I was free to let my heart guide me on my lofty quest. Since their website is very user friendly and gives you many options to find a bag that fits your style it only took me a minute to decide on “The One“:
Handbag Heaven Sami Quilted Bag
($54.95, Handbag Heaven)
Celine & Her Quilted Sami Bag
I, like many others, have lusted after the Marc Jacobs Stam bag, which is the designer counterpart to the Sami, since 2005 and I had high hopes that the Sami would be everything I could ever want in a “steal” version. Upon taking the bag out of the box and touching it, I immediately noticed that it felt very soft. However, there is a slight “squeakiness”, which comes from the material being leatherette, rather than leather. It has a long, gold chain that you can wear over your shoulder or let hang as decoration. The hardware is a little cheap feeling (the chain, for instance feels very light) but all in all it looks really good and the overall feel of the bag is surprisingly substantial for $55! The inside is very roomy, with one zipper pocket and two smaller pockets. There’s also the zipper on the outside, just like the original. I chose the brown color but it also comes in black, purple, pewter and red.
The real question of course, is how does the bag hold up when actually being used? I decided to take my Sami out for an all-day trial run, so I threw all my crap (sorry, stuff) in it and went about my daily activities. It’s really rather light, which means it won’t give you a back-ache when filled with all your things; all the zippers are completely functional and the closure at the top seems to be of good quality. As mentioned above, the hardware seemed to be a little shoddy, but after 2 days of running around with it, opening closures, zippers, etc, everything is still exactly where it should be. I also received two compliments on my bag – one of them from a guy, and you know guys never notice bags! After putting my poor Sami through the ringer, I examined it again and apart from a few dangling threads, the bag looks just as good as when I first took it out of the box.
Handbag Heaven has tons of trendy and classic bags, and many styles come in multiple colors. They offer a 100% money back guarantee and it’s also worth noting that no bag on their site will run you more than $75. They also like to run promotions from time to time so if you kids are into Facebook (as my grandmother would say) or Twitter, or if you’d like to read their blog, you can find them in the following places: HH on Facebook, HH on Twitter & HH Blog.
All in all I’m really quite pleased with the Sami Bag and it now has a permanent place in my handbag rotation. While it doesn’t feel quite like leather and the hardware lacks the weight of the original, I can tell that it won’t fall apart any time soon. It feels light on the shoulder and its classic-meets-modern look, means it will literally look great with anything in your wardrobe. I think this would be a great gift for your mom or friend, although I’d probably skip the friend who already owns three authentic Chanel quilted clutches because she will most likely not be impressed. But, really, readers, I think we all know the moral of the this story: when you’re saving so much money on your bag… you have that much more to spend on shoes! ;)
- great color, look
- good price
- roomy, comfortable, light
- hardware slightly cheap-looking
- leatherette feels a little “plasticy”