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18th May 2021

Micro bags, begone! As we prepare to return to the office, it’s about time we embraced the XXL tote. Say hello to the capacious carry-on.

As a return to the office lurks ominously on the horizon, it’s time we turned our attentions to the vessels with which we carry our essentials: think face mask, hand sanitiser et al.

Indeed, we may have resigned our go-to carry-ons to the dusty corners of the backs of our wardrobes – and minds – but now, as life’s lid creaks open once again, it’s time to whip them out of retirement, or invest in a brand spanking new offering, instead.

Fashion may have flirted with the adorable but utterly impractical micro-bag, but luckily for us, the decree is clear that XXL bags are back on the menu. And they’re bigger than ever before.

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The high street, both virtual and bricks and mortar, is awash with roomy offerings; from Mulberry to Massimo Dutti, these big ole bags are crying out to be thrown over your shoulder and taken for a spin. In fact, they’re the only plus one you’ll need this summer. Here are a few of our favourites. 

  • Massimo Dutti raffia tote bag with leather handles

    Massimo Dutti raffia tote bag with leather handles

    You can’t go wrong with a hard-working raffia tote, and this Massimo Dutti offering is proof. Wear with an all-white get-up and lashings of gold jewellery for optimal summer vibes.

    Shop Massimo Dutti raffia tote bag with leather handles, £169

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  • The White Company leather shopper bag

    The White Company leather shopper bag

    This soft leather shopper is the perfect vessel for carrying your life in. For those who prefer to play it safe, keep it cool with grey, the most inoffensive hue out there.

    Shop The White Company leather shopper bag, £65

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  • Mulberry small Portobello tote

    Best tote bags to shop now: Yellow Mulberry bag

    This sunshine yellow Portobello bag is part of Mulberry’s first sustainable collection and is, quite literally, sunshine in a bag. We’ll be wearing ours with a white shirt and true blue jeans.

    Shop Mulberry small Portobello tote, £650

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  • Arket large straw tote bag

    Best tote bags to shop now: Arket black woven bag

    This woven bag from Arket is a great summer alternative to heavy leather bags; it’s a true timeless staple. We’ll be wearing ours with head-to-toe black for some serious Wednesday-Addams-but-make-it-fashion vibes.

    Shop Arket large straw tote bag, £99

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  • Kurt Geiger Kensington basket shopper

    Kurt Geiger Kensington basket shopper

    Kurt Geiger’s Kensington basket shopper struggles to stay in stock for good reason; it’s purse-friendly and picture-perfect. We can’t wait to wear ours nestled in the nook of our elbows this summer.

    Shop Kurt Geiger Kensington basket shopper, £99

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  • Folklore large Cella bag in camel leather

    Best tote bags to shop now: Folklore woven bag

    Nothing screams summer more than an easy breezy oversized shirt and an XXL woven bag, and this Folklore offering is proof. Now all we need is sunny weather to go with it.

    Shop Folklore large Cella bag in camel leather, £420

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  • Clarks Hanley Dawn bag

    Best tote bags to shop now: Black leather Clarks tote

    Similarly to the enduring appeal of an LBD, a classic black bag is equally as timeless. This buttery leather offering from Clarks is as roomy as it is sophisticated.

    Shop Clarks Hanley Dawn bag, £75, Clarks

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  • AllSaints Captain leather north south tote bag

    All Saints Captain leather north south tote bag

    Whether you wear yours back to the office, to the gym or to the park for a picnic, AllSaints’ creamy tote is summer in bag form. We’ll be upping the ante with as much silver jewellery as we can fit on our bodies.

    Shop AllSaints Captain leather north south tote bag, £178,

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  • LPOL Penrose soft leather tote bag

    LPOL Penrose soft leather tote bag

    This pretty pink tote from conscious east London label LPOL is as classic as it is cool. Hey, if it’s good enough for the Hackney hipsters, it’s good enough for us.

    Shop LPOL Penrose soft leather tote bag, £375

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  • Aspinal of London Marmalade Pebble bag

    Best tote bags to shop now: Aspinal of London orange leather tote bag

    Orange is everywhere this summer, but for those too afraid of its punchiness for their wardrobes, embrace the hue by championing a tangerine tote. We love this offering from Aspinal of London. 

    Shop Aspinal of London Marmalade Pebble bag, £650

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  • Undone Stitch personalised bag

    Undone Stitch personalised bag

    A beach bag and a shopping tote in one, you say? This monogrammed carry-on courtesy of independent label Undone Stitch is a perfect way of killing two birds with one stone. 

    Shop Undone Stitch personalised bag, £38

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  • Flower Love Child zodiac tote

    Flower Love Child zodiac tote

    Wear your heart – or your star sign – on your shoulder in the form of this adorable zodiac tote which we’ll be wearing when the moon is in retrograde as a warning to the rest of the world about how we, according to our signs, may be feeling.

    Shop Flower Love Child zodiac tote, £15.99

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  • The Mad Hatter of Durham personalised shopping bag

    The Mad Hatter of Durham personalised shopping bag

    For those who are in the market for a slightly more demure monogrammed tote, look to The Mad Hatter of Durham’s jute iteration which we’ll be wearing with our favourite floaty frocks all summer long.

    Shop The Mad Hatter of Durham personalised shopping bag, £28.99

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Lead Image: courtesy of Cos 

All images courtesy of brands

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