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You'll be green with envy over this beautiful bag.
By "Today" Style Editor
updated 5/6/2005 4:00:30 PM ET 2005-05-06T20:00:30

Wanna know if you’re a real fashionista?

A sure sign is that “spring fever” state of mind when you get the urge to reorganize your essentials and slip them into a brand new, statement-making handbag. (That’s fashionista-speak for purse.)

Don’t fight it — call it the modern version of “nesting” and go with the flow. Fortunately, this season you’ll discover a plethora of purses that are both practical and pretty.

Get a preview of the best right here in the latest edition of our weekly fashion and beauty update.

Hot tortilla (bag)!

Hold the salsa
One of our favorite shapes of the season is the oversized, unstructured shoulder bag that some call the “tortilla.” This bag is roomy enough to hold most everything you need, yet it is stylish enough to instantly update your look. It works best in a very soft, crushable or woven leather, suede or fabric — or go for the ultra-luxe touch of a real or faux snakeskin. The tortilla is a great choice for a day-to-day bag that works with most everything but the most ladylike of suits and dresses.

Trend Tip:
The tortilla bag in snakeskin is a specialty of Devi Kroell, a brand you’ll find in high-end specialty stores. Look for other versions and leathers at Coach, Bottega Veneta and Neiman Marcus.

Snake's a charmer.

Satchel rage
The oversized, structured satchel is very chic option that packs a lot of punch — and a lot of gear — making it the perfect choice for any woman who is on the run all day long. You will find the satchel in bright canvas or leather with contrasting trim, or in pouchy, safari-inspired styles fashioned out of faux snakeskin or tightly woven raffia (most often with outer pockets and buckle detailing). Some satchels have detachable shoulder straps, which make them easier to tote around, but the top-handle look is our favorite.

Trend Tip:
The classic shape of the satchel makes it the type of bag you could wear forever — so if you plan to do so, be sure to choose a color and pattern that you will love this year … and next.

Hop that train!

Haute hobo
You will love the all-purpose chic of this spring’s hobo bags. They are slim and easy to carry, and they come in every fabric and color under the rainbow. For day, add punch to your wardrobe with a bright citrus color in leather. Meanwhile, if you want to capture the “globetrotter” trend, go for one in woven leather or straw in natural tones. And for all-out fun, you will find many hobo styles in metallic silver, gold or copper. (The smaller sizes can work as an evening bag as well.)

Trend Tip:
You can pick up a well-priced hobo bag just about everywhere. If you are going to buy just one handbag this season, this one is a sure bet.

Light metals.
Precious metals
We’ve mentioned metallics already — and with good reason, for this trend shows no sign of slowing. In fact, you’ll find most of the season’s great  handbag shapes in metallics, including the one of everyone’s fingertips right now, the itsy-bitsy metallic wristlet, clutch or pouch, which slips easily into your day bag and is on duty for evenings out. We love gold and silver metallics, especially when patterned with a faux snakeskin texture, but you can find metallicized leathers in practically every color.

Trend Tip:
Want to downsize? Mini versions of all the handbag trends featured here are super chic in metallicized leathers.

Tote with the most.
Tote vote
Carry a lot of baggage? Then the “haute tote” is the bag for you! These beautifully crafted and decorated totes of leather, canvas or terrycloth are just right for those of us who, well, tote a lot around. We love the embellished leather version, which is often finished with beads and stitching. Another fun alternative is the bright floral tote paired with leather handles and trim — just dressed up enough to work as your day-to-day handbag.

Trend Tip: We love the haute totes from Cole Haan, Juicy Couture, Kate Spade and Banana Republic. You will also find fun, colorful totes at Target and JC Penney.

Judy Gordon is a New York-based style consultant and the “Today” show’s style editor. She has been covering the fashion and beauty beat for the past decade. To learn more about Gordon, you can visit her Web site, TheTrendReport.com, which highlights style trends in America and across the world.

firstVIEW is the primary supplier of photos to Fashion Friday. Go to www.firstVIEW.com for the latest pictures from top fashion shows around the world, including New York, Los Angeles, London, Paris, Milan, Brazil, New Zealand, South Korea and more.

© 2013 MSNBC Interactive.  Reprints


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