Mini Tote Bags – The Best of Both Worlds?

Bag size is a very fickle trend in the fashion world, and it can be hard to tell what’s “in” at any given moment. Do you go big or small? Do you go small or super mini? Let’s face it….size really matters! For the past year or so, mini has been the mantra and many brands downsized their iconic bags to almost ridiculously tiny proportions. However, many Fall/Winter 2016 collections are showing a lot of bigger bags and totes…with a good mix of mini bags too.

Many of you often ask PurseBop to guide you on what size bags to buy. In our feature “Don’t Get Rid of Your Larger Bags Just Yet“, PurseBop investigated the whole mini matter in-depth. The truth is that mini bags and oversized bags are cyclical trends that phase in and out. So, it isn’t exactly wise to trade in all your bigger bags for smaller bags and vice versa. The most important things to consider when buying a bag are your personal needs and preferences. However, sometimes it can be hard to articulate what you really want. On one hand, you may love mini bags but may also need a tote with a substantial capacity. Instead of picking one or the other…why not BOTH?? Mini tote bags are the best of both worlds!


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Even just the phrase “mini tote bag” may seem contradictory. When you think of a tote, you probably picture a huge carry-it-all style bag, like the Louis Vuitton Neverfull, Goyard Saint Louis, and Goyard’s biggest rival Fauré Le Page.  However, the more you think about it, the idea of a mini tote really makes sense and is probably just what you need! If you still aren’t sold on the idea of a mini tote bag, PurseBop is here to explain why you should add a tinier tote bag to your collection at some point. Get started on finding one by taking a look at our mini tote bag suggestions down below.

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Why the Mini Tote Bag is the Best of Both Worlds

#1 EVERY girl needs a tote
Totes, in general, are collection staples. They are open, spacious, and allow you to easily throw items in and take them out when needed. Even larger satchel bags that may be around the same size as mini totes, don’t always have the same type of easy access. A mini tote may not be your travel, work, or school tote, but it can be a go-bag when you need an open, slightly more roomy bag.

#2 Mini totes will satiate your mini bag cravings in a practical way
The sheer size of a mini bag is adorable. However, once the cuteness factor wears off, you may start wondering how you can possibly fit your cellphone or even hand into a bag of that stature. One of the best ways to cave into the mini trend is with a mini tote bag. Tote bags are rectangular and have a structure that will accommodate your items. Totes can be more practical compared to a Chanel mini for example. Chanel minis have flaps and need to be closed, which is a lot more restrictive. Mini totes just aren’t for show, but are meant to carry a (limited) number of items.

#3 You can carry a lot of things, but you won’t run of the risk of overpacking or being weighed down
As mentioned above, mini totes have a greater capacity compared to their peer mini bags but you still can’t carry the whole world in it. For those of us who tend to overpack, restriction can sometimes be a good thing! With mini totes, you’ll be carrying a reasonable amount of items. But with it’s smaller form, you won’t feel like you’re lugging an annoying bag around.

#4 Mini tote bags give you options
It’s always a good thing to have bigger bags and smaller bags, and mini totes happen to be the perfect in between! You may need a bag with a tote structure, but don’t want to carry a huge travel sized bag. The mini tote fill gaps in your wardrobe for those moments where really small and really big aren’t appropriate.

#5 Mini tote bags have a lower price point
Mini tote bags are smaller by nature, and this means they require less material to construct. Less material means less money (most of the time). If you admire a certain tote bag in a larger style, but can’t bring yourself to spend the money on it,  consider buying the mini version if it is available. You can get the same look for a little bit less!

Mini Tote Bag Suggestions

Balenciaga Papier A4 Mini Leather Tote Bag via Neiman Marcus

Prada Saffiano Cuiro Double Mini Tote Bag via Neiman Marcus

Valentino Mini Rockstud Leather Tote via Nordstrom

Givenchy Mini Horizon Bag via Bergdorf Goodamn

Fendi Mini 3Jours via Bergdorf Goodman

MCM Milla Mini Tote Bag via Neiman Marcus

Tory Burch Small Robinson Zip Tote via Nordstorm

Saint Laurent Baby Sac de Jour via Barneys

Fendi 2Jours Mini via Barneys

Do you own any bags that qualify as mini totes? Do you find yourself using them a lot?

Read related articles below:
Carry it ALL: The Best Designer Tote Bags
Complete Guide to Mini Bag Madness
Not All Mini Bags are Created Equal
Louis Vuitton vs. Goyard: Celebrity Tote Showdown
Goyard Saint Louis: The Tote of All Totes

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Published: July 10th, 2016
Updated: May 27th, 2017

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