Calvin Klein Saffiano Leather Satchel/Shoulder Bag

This bag owns my heart. Unlike my Kate Spade New York Cobble Hill Mini Toddy, which gives me butterflies in my stomach, this elegant saffiano leather bag makes me feel safe inside–so safe, in fact, that I carry it with me every day.

Here’s what’s in my bag right now:

  • My Michael Kors saffiano leather wallet (a little light right now, after some extensive Christmas shopping)
  • A makeup bag crammed with lip balm, lip gloss, eye drops, plastic toothpicks, several barrettes, a compact, and a whole, whole lot of other stuff
  • A large wide-tooth comb
  • A protein bar
  • Reading glasses in a substantial case
  • At least three boxes of sugar-free altoids
  • Pens
  • A nail file
  • Sunglasses in a huge case
  • Keys
  • A few bottles of OTC medicine (allergy medicine, headache pills, the works)

… and about another 5 pounds of stuff.

The beautiful part is that all of these sundry objects are either squirreled neatly in a zip pocket or in one of the three of this bag’s huge compartments, because Mama gotta be organized like that.

In short, in this bag, which I carry with me everywhere, every day, I have my entire life.

If I was a really kind person, I’d take a picture of the inside of my bag. But there’s so much stuff in there right now, I’m just going to show you this picture that I nicked off of Amazon.

I am pretty sure that this bag will outlast me and my grandchildren. It’s that sturdy, and it’s made from thick, waterproof saffiano crosshatched leather that absolutely does not scratch, nick, or stain.  For real, this sh%t could survive nuclear war.

But it’s the pockets that really make me emotional.

The bag has a massive center zippered compartment, with two slip pockets on one side (one of which is large enough for my Samsung Galaxy S7), and a zippered pocket on the other (that’s where I keep my pens, nail file, extra USB cable, earbuds…the list is long). There’s also a large compartment on both sides of the zippered compartment. Those both snap closed. So you can keep all your ultra-valuable stuff safe in the main compartment, and still have easy access to your keys, mints, glasses, or whatever, in the outer two, and they still won’t fall out if you slam on your brakes too hard and your purse tumbles off your front seat onto the floor.  In short–lots and lots of organized storage space and nooks and crannies to stow your small stuff.

A bag like this is the perfect antidote for my ever-present anxiety about being in the middle of nowhere with a hangnail and no nail file. Or in an airport with no Kindle. Or in a meeting with no lunch. Like I said, it makes me feel safe in the world.

The little things that justify a substantial price tag.

Side view, although this pic doesn’t really depict how wide it truly is.

Let’s face it, designer handbags ain’t cheap. But as far as that goes, this bag is one of the best values you’ll find. I have spent far more for handbags that disintegrated in three months (er…cough…Michael…cough…Kors). But this beauty’s corners are protected by light-gold frames. Its beefy leather zipper pull also has a chunky piece of hardware. The zipper itself, with its large sturdy teeth, never misses.

But one feature impressive enough to deserve its own paragraph is the handles. I love these thick, rolled leather handles. Their 11″ drop means they’re comfortable over your shoulder and stay put, even with a jacket on. And they’re so well stitched that I know they can withstand even the heavy loads I put on them. Unfortunately, flimsy handles and straps are all too common, even in designer bags. Not this bag, ladies. Not this bag.

I could whitter on endlessly about this bag. But suffice it to say, it’s my favorite. I love it so much that I’d risk chasing after a mugger who tried to grab it and run. No joke. And when you compare its price (about $250) to its value, it’s a no brainer.


  • Materials: Crosshatched leather featuring rolled top handles and gold-tone frames at upper corners; flat bottom.
  • Closures: Zipper closure, plus two large magnetic snap closures
  • Interior:  Main zippered compartment, one interior zipper pocket, plus two slip pockets
  • Handles: Thick rolled leather shoulder straps with 11″ drop
  • Length: 13″
  • Height: 10″
  • Price: $250 on Amazon