Leather has literally taken over. Whether pants or jackets to full-on dresses, and of course, accessories, the once “biker girl” fabric now screams femininity and sophistication. Similarly, handbags have always been a staple of a woman’s wardrobe. From oversized hobo bags to clutches as a perfect complement to eveningwear, purses have become the most perfect and practical accessory. So, mixing the two trends together, the satchel is born.

Satchels have been forever compared to briefcases and book bags, whether toting schoolwork at prep school or carrying meeting notes and files to work. Nowadays, however, the so-serious stereotype of the satchel has been transformed, slipping off the shoulders of students and businessmen and onto the runways.

This Fashionista trades in the old school backpack for a new way to lug books. There is something transient about a satchel; it’s composure and structure, and with this Fashionista’s Chloé bag in particular, it’s neutral color and material. Updating the original satchel with a variety of shapes and sizes, it has truly become the newest “it” bag to graze the fashion scene; the traditional boxy structure satchel provides for a tougher look, or as this Fashionista chooses, a slightly softer, rounder bag adds an element to her outfit that is très chic.

Sticking to her neutrals, this Fashionista rocks a translucent leopard top, covered with a black blazer, both by Aritzia. Proving its easy to mix comfort and elegance, Lululemon leggings are this Fashionista’s ideal choice for snug leggings. Tying the outfit together, literally, with Aldo lace up booties a la grunge chic, leather, structure and simplicity is exactly what this Fashionista achieves.

Spotted: The fall 2011 ready-to-wear collections were filled with leather, structure, and of course, satchels. The purses of Donna Karan’s ladylike show went seriously square, adding a modern twist to the traditional satchel shape, while the monochromatic presentation of Reed Krakoff added hints of print with exotic snakeskin satchels. Similarly, Diane von Furstenberg translated her famous patterned wrap dress geometric patterns onto her bags, while Yigal Azrouël opted for embellished satchels to accompany his androgynous collection. While this Fashionista opts for a neutral, subtle version of the satchel, brands like Cambridge Satchel Company offer vibrant bags in fluorescent highlighter colors — swing one over your shoulder and hit the streets!

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