As an animal-loving vegetarian, I love it when fashion meets compassion. Luckily for me (and any of you who prefer not to wear animal skins, and love saving a greenback or two), there are more faux fashion options out there than ever. I never have a problem finding great bags or shoes that resemble high-end pieces-- my black Aldo purse with gold hardware is so used and abused, it looks just like my mom's broken-in Coach bag, and I live in my faux-leather western booties from Zara! I could easily gush over wallet/animal-friendly finds enough to fill an entire website. But for simplicity's sake, today I'm going to focus on bags from two savvy online retailers. Here are a few of my favorite fall/winter beauties that will help hold your stuff and keep your outfits looking hot when temperatures drop!
This versatile plaid bag from ShopRuche.com reminds me of one from L.L. Bean, but the slouchy shape makes it a bit more fashion-forward. It's still every bit as functionable as a sturdy tote, but the gold details keep it chic! You won't be mistaken for a lumberjack with this!
Ruche also sells this structured tote for the business profashional. But the Debriefing bag isn't strictly business; the braided handle and twist-turn lock add a vintage, feminine vibe. Perfect for work or weekend!
It-Brit online retailer Asos finally launched its U.S. site last month and, boy, are we lucky! In addition to offering up-to-the-minute fashions at sweet prices, it has a fantastic accessories section. The Maisey Patent bag by Paul's Boutique has been seen on the likes of Leona Lewis, who is a vegan and known for eschewing animal materials. This bag is available is many colors, but I love this winter white; the nude shade will work well into spring and summer, too. And the colorful charms are too cute to resist!
Lastly, feast your eyes on this Asos Faux Ostrich Lady Bag. This reminds me of one Urban Outfitters sold last year, but I think this pick is even more sophisticated. This tote will lend polish to work and casual ensembles and, in a classic camel color, will never go out of style. Plus you can feel good sporting a rockin' bag and knowing that no actual ostriches were harmed for the sake of style!
Just so you know, no one paid me to blog about these purses; these are just my latest faves/wish list items. I hope to purchase something like one of these in the near future, but always look for vintage, thrifted or eco-friendly versions first (and while faux leather bags are animal-free, their materials are not always good for Mama Earth!). Tell me, where are your favorite places to nab accessories? And how do you feel about real vs. faux?
Next time, we'll get back to discussing our great debate: moisturizer! Evil zit-maker or sacred face-saver? You decide!