Ode to GST



With all of the hoopla surrounding the discontinuation of the Chanel Grand Shoppers Tote (GST), Pursebop has been having some behind the scenes deliberations about purchasing one. I consulted my friend, New Yorker and longtime PurseBop follower Maura Carlin for some advice and her response was absolutely hilarious:


To GST or not to GST . . . that is the question. Is it nobler to schlep a department store freebie along with my designer handbag? Or shall I spring for the classic Chanel tote to do double duty. With confirmed rumors of the GST’s demise, at least in the United States, it is time to fish or cut bait. I’ve considered and purchased various Chanel totes before, only to toss them back. A year ago, it seemed any tote with the CC was a no-go for me, particularly after seeing a mom with two teenage daughters at an airport lugging six black and silver Coco and Karl totes between them.  It was over-the-top excess and that image cured me of the desire. Or so I thought. But, if this is indeed my last chance, surely the infamous GST deserves a go. I found one, supposedly the last in stock at Saks.

I have a “type” A bag type. I prefer simple and elegant designs a little under the radar. For example, I prefer the Chanel reissue to the classic CC flap, though I sport both in the larger sizes. Bags must be relatively easy to open and close (so no Celine belt or trapeze for me). Forget hobos with a single strap and zippered top (there goes the BV python duette and the LV onatah fleurs) where you shove in your hand and dig. Both shoulder- and hand-holding are essential (goodbye Chanel cerf and Hermes garden party) and oddly I dislike the detachable shoulder strap when the handles remain upright.  East-west fits me better than north-south. I am upset when bag contents spill out when driving. Feet are a mixed bag.

Does the GST live up to the hype . . . and my criteria? It is pretty and simple in black caviar with gold. On the other hand, I’ll look like every other label whore my age toting a non-flap bag; a situation I usually avoid. Yet, surprisingly the big CC doesn’t bother me, perhaps because my arm covers it. The bag sits on my shoulder, even with a winter coat, and the leather piece prevents damage. Roomy and accessible with both zippered and open pockets, my old ipad 2 and makeup bag fit easily with my other crap. There’s a key strap; a bonus for me particularly with keyless remote cars. However, it is boxy and open with a real risk of car floor scatter and rain/snow sogginess. Fabric lining is a little disappointing but keeps down the weight (at least of the bag). Of course, for Chanel it’s cheap (I mean inexpensive).

Bottom line: I think it’s a keeper. Unfortunately, I won’t know for sure until it’s too late.

Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below. And if you have any fantabulous GST shots, hash tag them #PurseBopPicks and I will add them here for eye candy (I really would like to replace the above picture, LOL)!

Love PurseBop

Published: January 15th, 2015
Updated: June 20th, 2019

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3 Responses to “Ode to GST”

  • Hey there, I have the GST in black with silver (and also the creamy beige, amongst several other styles (around 18?!) – I’m a Chanel slave). I have used my black GST every business day for the last 7 years, it’s in amazing condition, no scuffs, no signs of use (except the handles) this bag has never failed me, it remains classic and looks fabulous. It has withstood constant rain (I live in London) and nothing inside has ever gotten wet! For an every day bag it hold everything I need: iPad, large (matching) wallet- you must always match! My water, make up, umbrella, magazines – E.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g!! Since seeing your article you’ve got me panicking about the future and the lifespan of my beloved GST so…..I’m thinking of buying another, for when my current one ‘retires’. I wouldn’t want to be without this bag. No other bag will do for me on a daily basis what this one does (referring to your reasons of why other bags aren’t for you – I have the same must have/must not have requirements). GO AND BUY IT!! You won’t regret it. ❤️