The Alexander Wang Emile tote
Of all the bags I've reviewed over the last month, I have to say that the Emile tote by New York designer Alexander Wang is up there with my favourites. It might even be THE favourite. Of course it's got some heavy competition (competing against the Proenza Schouler PS1 for my affection was never going to be easy) but this charcoal canvas beauty is a tough bag to beat.
Let's start with the colour. I know charcoal may seem a little boring at first, but don't be afraid to choose grey over black; Alexander is the master of the dark palette, and he knows better than anyone how to work deep shades into contemporary designs. The end result doesn't feel bland; it looks fresh and individual whilst keeping inline with Alex's signature luxury street/androgynous style. Next up, the fabric choice: Alexander's love of contrasting elements is reflected in the Emile, as he juxtaposes the grey canvas with sumptuous soft black leather trim and rhodium hardware. There are instantly recognizable design details, like the silver zippers on the closure and dogclips on the adjustable (and removable!) shoulder strap, and yet the bag remains an under the radar piece.
Unlike Alexander's Rocco duffle bag, the Emile doesn't scream fashion - it whispers it into enviable ears. It's an understated designer accessory that promotes women like me to stalk fashionable owners down the street just to confirm that "yes, it is Alexander Wang", leaving me behind to daydream about purchasing such a covetable bag. At £665, it's reasonably priced for a designer item, and at 42cm in length and 33cm high, it's a good size too.