Dressing for the office can be the most exciting or dreadful part of any day. Your clothes can put an extra spring in your step as you walk into work, or leave you wishing you'd sprung sprung for the trenta iced coffee that morning. And, of course, you want to match your purse to your outfit, but making the switch can lead to leaving your favorite pen, lip balm, or wallet behind in yesterday's bag. Instead of stressing over sacrificing matching for all your supplies, it's generally better to invest in one, high-quality, goes-with-everything bag to use on the daily.
If you're a freelancer, like me, then you might not have to dress up as often or to as high of a degree. But, under that same token, working from home can feel stagnant. For days when you want to step out to a coffee shop or cafe for a change of scenery, you'll want a carry-all that can handle your laptop, office supplies, planner and anything else you might need.
First and foremost, a neutral palette and quality materials are the essentials that will set you up with the perfect office bag. Properly designed compartments help too. You don't want your pen caps getting wedged in any open holes on your computer or for you mid-day protein bar to to crack open and smear all over your planner (not speaking from personal experience or anything...). These five bags contain all of these essentials and more. From extremely reasonably priced to high glamour, there's a quality office bag for you.
1. The Lots-of-Pockets Satchel
Rather than having smaller pockets within the main compartment, Kate Spade Saturday decided to inverse typical design with this blue-green number. There are three zipped compartments and a buttoned flap as well. They range in size and shape, boasting shapes perfect for pens, Post-Its, and emergency hair clips. The Lots of Pockets Satchel by Kate Spade Saturday comes in at $105.
2. Le Pliage Briefcase
For a modern and simplistic take on the briefcase, give the Longchamp Le Pliage Briefcase a chance. It's made of the trusty nylon that Longchamp is known for, and has a leather trim and handle accent. This bag is better for those of us who work without a computer, as it doesn't have structured storage within like some other office bags do. It's a great shape for portfolios, notebooks, folders and more. It rings up at $95, so it's on the cheaper side of designer handbags. Le Pliage comes in beige, black and navy, so you can pick your neutral shade of choice.
3. Minimalist Faux Leather Backpack
There's a reason we spent the majority of our childhoods schlepping around backpacks — unless you were trendy and switched to a messenger bag, but chances are you eventually switched back because one shoulder always hurt. They're hands-free, roomy, and, now that backpack purses are making a comeback, they're also stylish. If you have a long commute to work by way of public transportation, this $32.80 bag from Forever 21 is perfect for you. And hey, more hands for coffee and breakfast, right?
4. Merona Messenger Handbag
For a sleek-looking bag that won't break your bank account, this bag has it all. It's black, faux snakeskin, and has a sleek flap and turn-key closure. This Merona handbag is great as a computer carrier because it's slim enough to not leave much room for movement and inherent damage. It has two shorter handles for a good grip, but also a shoulder strap for those days when you just wanna slap it on and go. The best part about this sleek bag from target is its price tag. It costs a cool $14.98.
5. Trendy multi-compartment satchel
The price tag on this bag only reads $39.95, but its look is comparable to the $400 models that have been filling designer shelves. The bowed sides and tassles that top zippered extenders are not only on trend, but allow for more room within the main compartment. If you've got a large laptop or iPad, this bag will adjust with your needs. H&M hit the nail on the head with this crosshatched texture and use of both short straps and a removeable long one.