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Vaalbara Designs specializes in unique, vibrant and environmentally conscious handbags for sale handcrafted in the USA. For over 10 years, we’ve lovingly and professionally crafted Women’s Clutches, Mini/Long/Large and small Clutch handbags, Diaper bags, Messenger Bags, Tote Bags, Weekender Bags, Tote Bags, along with small run, Limited Edition Handbags and accessories. Our fabrics are collected from every corner of the world.

We’re excited to announce many additional products we’ve recently added to the Vaalbara Designs brand.  Check out our new Apparel, Home Goods, Apothecary, Accessories, and Baby products!

While we are passionate about the interrelatedness of the world, Vaalbara Designs is dedicated to local sustainability. Many of our materials, including our first -grade leather, are purchased within our community. And of course, inspired by the bohemian surf culture, each bag is handmade with love here at home in Venice, California.

A portion of every sale goes to the non-profit SurfRider Foundation, dedicated to keeping our beaches and oceans clean.

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See our main site at www.VaalbaraDesigns.com
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Category Archives: Tote Bags

How to Take Care and Prolong the Life of Leather Tote Bags

Here are some of the tips on how you can maintain and make sure that your trendy-brown-leather-tote-bag-1brand new leather tote bag lasts a long time.

When Cleaning

The general rule is that you start by cleaning off the dirt through wiping the bag with a cleaning liquid specifically for leather. Every day, you need to clean your bag with a soft and dry cloth; this does not take a lot more than a couple of minutes. However, this works if you want to preserve the leather material.

A lot of brands have their own guides on how to take care of their product in particular, so never hesitate to ask them about this once you buy a leather bag.

Conditioning the Leather Tote Bag

caring-prolonging-life-leather-bags-1Conditioning is more like a moisturizing phase for your leather bag, as the leather conditioner dries out in a while. You can just use a dollop of it and gently apply over the surface of the bag. You can also use neatsfoot oil or mink oil which stimulates and supplements the natural oils of the leather. You need to leave this for 10 minutes and then clear off excess while you leave the tote bag in an airy room. You should condition leather bags once a month.

Weatherproof Your Bag

trendy-stylish-black-leather-tote-bag-1Leather is a permeable material, and therefore can never be 100 percent weatherproof on its own. The best way to do this is to use beeswax cream which protects against water. Don’t go for spray protectants, as they are not as effective.

Storing the Leather Bag

Always stash your tote bag in an unused dust bag and fill it with stuffing; but don’t go for newspaper, as butter paper works better. Also, put the leather bag back in its original packing along with small amounts of silica gel so that the bag doesn’t get damp from anything around it. Moreover, let the air pass through the place twice a month to discourage the growth of mold.

Some Other Tips

Allow the water spills to dry out naturally. High heat measures like making use of a hair dryer only causes the leather surface to crinkle. Also, try not to rest your leather tote next to your jeans if you want to avoid color transfer. You need to bring it back as soon as it gets stained.

Know the Leather

caring-for-leather-designer-trendy-bagsMost of the leather bags are the ones that are vegetable tanned. Once drenched in water, they discolor super fast. Another leather skin is the chrome tanned skin which is water resistant. This is also more commonly referred to as the Wet Blue.

Looking for leather tote bags? Browse our leather and fabric handbags at Vaalbara Designs for the perfect pick that will suit all types of occasions.

Everyone Has Their Own Perfect Tote Bag

perfect-tote-bag-vaalbara-designs-01Before you go and buy a tote bag, it is important that you know the different types of totes and which one best suits your needs. Every tote is designed for a specific activity. For example, a tote can be used for going to the gym, while another for storing textbooks. Some of the things that you will need to consider when choosing the perfect tote bag include checking what bag is needed for, how frequently it will be used, and what size of the bag would be perfect for the intended use.

The Use You Will Put It To

To know what kind of tote you want to purchase, think about how often and where you will most probably be using the tote bag for. How the bag is being used determines what size you need, what design would be suitable and what material should it preferably be made out of. For instance, if you want a bag that carries tons of small items like your cell phone, wallet, keys, and pen, a good idea is to get a tote that has plenty of small pockets that can separate items and also keep them safe.


The Size of the Bag

Size has always been an important factor when you are shopping for any accessory. Before you decide on a tote bag, think about how many items you carry it with you every day and compare the sizes of different bags that you have your heart set on. A tote bag that is very small won’t be much use to you except for maybe flaunting the design. But then again, if you know you are not in the habit of carrying around a lot of stuff, getting a large and spacious tote is pretty useless.


The Closure of the Tote Bag

Like a lot of bags, totes come with different closure methods like clasps, buttons, ties, and zippers. If a buyer needs a bag that can close off completely, getting a tote with zipper is a great idea. Some bags have zero closure which works for bags like beach totes. That being said, if you are using a tote bag on a regular basis and carrying valuables like your cell phone and wallet, then a much better idea is to get a bag that closes up so as to protect your valuables.


The Materials

perfect-tote-bag-vaalbara-designs-05One of the important factors that goes into choosing a tote is the material it is made up of. This affects the bag’s style as well as its durability. The very first tote bags were always crafted of canvas, but today, these bags are made out of plenty of different types of materials like leather, polyprophylene, and cotton. The choice of what material you should get depends a lot on the taste of the user and the style along with what purpose you want the tote bag to serve.

If you are looking to browse and purchase a new handbag, check out our amazing Tote bags collection at Vaalbara Designs.

Different Styles of Tote Bags

The versatile tote bag deserves a place in every girl’s handbag collection. They’re universally fashionable, highly functional and totally chic! Whatever your fashion taste, there’s a tote that will suit you perfectly.

Tote bags have become quite diversified these days with oodles of styles and types for you to choose from. From large tote bags to cute mini totes and small tote bags, these spacious bags are more than just a useful carryall for your stuff, but also a chic accessory that will enhance your appearance. You’ve just gotta try out different styles and see which one you like best.

tote bags

Canvas Tote Bag

These totes are fashioned from canvas material, which is a sturdy, heavy-duty plain-woven fabric that will resist wear and tear. Canvas totes are notoriously long-lasting and can be quite fashionable particularly when made of printed or colored canvas.

tote bagsBeach Tote Bag

Heading to the beach? Then grab a beach tote bag! This nifty variation of the classic tote is usually large and colorful with lots of space to carry your beach essentials. These are also often canvas-based, or may be made of straw, plastic or nylon. Generally, they’re fashioned from materials that will stand up to the beach environment, and still look chic on your arm or sitting on your beach towel.

tote bagsLeather Tote Bag

Though tote bags originally became popular for their functionality and spaciousness, they have since received a deluxe design upgrade. The luxury tote bag is a high-end version of the classic tote that is made from more expensive materials like leather. They’re often designed with elegant metal hardware and are more sophisticated-looking than a regular canvas tote. The luxury tote often has multiple compartments and sections to make this large, plush handbag even more functional for its high-end users.

tote bagsMini Tote Bag

The mini tote bag is just what it’s name suggests – a miniature version of the classic tote bag. These smaller totes sacrifice some spaciousness to make them more suitable for everyday wear. Though they’re not built to carry as many items as a larger tote, they’re still quite useful, especially when designed with multiple pockets and compartments.

Which type of tote bag is your favorite?

Whatever your choice, shop your favorite cute tote bag and other cool handbags at Vaalbara Designs!

What Makes a Sustainable Handbag?

sustainable-handbags-01Buying an eco-friendly handbag is a great way to demonstrate your commitment to a healthy environment and still show off your remarkable fashion sense. Even those persons who are not very environmentally aware will find that eco-friendly handbags can be a stylish option. Sustainable handbags are often sleek and trendy, and reflect a sophisticated design that gives no clue of their humble origins. You probably never thought the trash could become your new fashion statement, but with sustainable handbags this is a wonderful reality.

Features of an eco-friendly handbag

These humble origins are often what make a particular handbag worthy of the “sustainable” title. A bag is considered sustainable when it uses environmentally friendly materials and processes to create the design, and have minimal impact on the natural environment. This can involve using discarded materials from the landfill, and repurposing them for these stylish creations.

eco-friendly-sustainable-handbags-02Designers of sustainable handbags may also use recycled leather to create new handbags. Plant-based materials like hemp and organic cotton are also very popular. Hand-made handbags are also considered sustainable since they reduce energy use and CO2 emissions by using human power instead of factory power.

Cruelty-free vegan handbags

Vegan handbags are a specialized category of sustainable bags. A true vegan handbag designer does not use any animal products whatsoever, and will take steps to keep their product line cruelty-free. Though these bags may be a little pricier than the less eco-friendly varieties, its worth the extra output since your purchase continues the efforts towards a healthier environment.

Vaalbara Designs handbags

vaalbara-sustainable-handbags-03Vaalbara Designs specializes in unique, vibrant and environmentally conscious bags handcrafted in the USA. Our fabrics are collected from every corner of the world and our inner lining is made with recycled plastic bottles.

A portion of every sale goes to the non-profit SurfRider Foundation, dedicated to keeping our beaches and oceans clean.

Vaalbara Designs is dedicated to local sustainability. Many of our materials, including our first -grade leather, are purchased within our community. And of course, inspired by the bohemian surf culture, each bag is handmade with love here at home in Venice, California.

Ultimately, the goal of the sustainable handbag movement is to minimize human impact on the environment in a chic and fashionable way.

Make an environmentally conscious fashion statement and shop our line of sustainable handbags, tote bags, eco friendly clutches and accessories today!

Cool Beach Bags

cool-beach-bagSometimes you just want to get away from it all and relax on a sandy beach with a pretty drink in hand. You know those drinks we’re talking about, like a pina colada or a strawberry daiquiri, with a tiny umbrella in the glass. The sand between your toes, a pretty drink in hand, the lull of the nearby waves, and a fabulous beach bag perched beside you on your beach towel – now that’s the ideal picture of a perfect day. In fact, we’re gonna postpone this blog post and hit the beach right now!

Ha ha, I kid I kid!

But if you’re heading out for a beach excursion you will definitely need a cute summer beach bag to carry all your beach essentials, so might as well make it a fabulous one.

Essential Features of a Trendy Beach Bag

cool-beach-bag-2Your trendy beach bag should be big enough to hold your beach towel, sunscreen, a change of clothes, sunglasses and other items that will contribute to your ideal beach experience. It should be hardy enough to withstand the sandy beach conditions and protect your belongings from being lost or damaged. One thing your beach bag should NOT do however, is compromise on style.

It should be just as beautiful as it is functional, so you look stylish and well put-together at the same time.

But where would you find such a bag? Hmmm…

Well, right here of course! Our super cool boho-chic beach bags satisfy all these essential functions and look fantastic while they do so! They are stylish, spacious, and hardy, and will last you for many beach trips to come.

Visit us at Vaalbaradesigns.com today and shop stylish and unique beach bags that will be the envy of everyone else on the beach.

Summer Handbag Trends

Every year a new crop of trendy summer handbags come to the fore and its always fun to incorporate these new styles into your daily wardrobe. This season’s new summer handbags are fun, vibrant and intriguing, with a creative approach to design. You’ll see these bags in the hands of your favorite celebrities who are always on the cutting edge of popular celebrity handbag fashion. Some of these trends are updated versions of timeless classics, while others are totally new creations themselves. Check out this listing of some of summer 2014’s most popular handbag trends, and update your knowledge on the latest in handbag fashion.

mini-clutchPrinted clutch purses

Floral, tribal, animal, all sorts of interesting prints have made their way to the surface of trendy handbags. These unique prints add dimension and transform an ordinary bag into something extraordinary.


Pastel colors

Delicate pastel colors like baby blue, milky pink and butter yellow adorn this season’s fashionable handbags. These colors might look demure, but their effect on these handbags is totally fierce.

Large clutches

These roomy bags are much bigger than an ordinary clutch and twice as fab! The oversized shape makes for a roomy purse that’s perfect for carrying all your essentials, plus it looks super stylish in your hand. Be sure to add a large clutch to your collection this summer for a super-sized handbag look.

stylish-coin-pouch-2014Coin pouches and pocket pouches

Today’s coin pouches are sleek and stylish and well-suited for a modern woman on the move. Carry a cool coin pouch to collect your change, or go for a chic and simple pocket pouch to fit a few essentials. A pocket pouch is perfect option for those ladies who can bother to fuss with a big handbag. Just slip your pretty pouch into your pocket and go!

Tote Bags

Tote bags are all the rage right now. A tote is a practical option for everyday wear plus they’re the epitome of effortless-chic. You can easily add style to any outfit simply by wearing a trendy leather, or non-leather tote bag, whatever your preference.

Click here to shop sustainable bags and clutches that will enhance your summer wardrobe and amp up your look.

Trendy Women’s Handbags

large-clutch-pastel-brown-leatherLike every other aspect of women’s fashion, handbag trends vary from season to season as innovative designers create new styles and also repurpose old motifs. Today’s trendy handbag might be tomorrow’s frumpy style and you don’t want to get caught in an outdated bag when the trends du jour have already moved on!

ellen-degeneres-vaalbara-clutch-bagIn the same breath, you don’t necessarily need to jump on EVERY new trend just to look fashionable. Oftentimes trends can be fleeting, so it might not be advisable to invest heavily in a trendy piece, when it will become outdated in a short while. However, it is still useful to stay abreast of what’s in vogue, so you can keep your sense of style current and move with the ever-changing times.

These days, practicality is just as important as style when choosing a handbag. Designers recognize this and today’s trendy handbags are just as functional as they are beautiful. Here are a few of the most popular handbag styles on the market, so you can choose the trend that intrigues you most and stay on top of new developments in handbag fashion.

Cool Crossbody Bags

Sometimes you just want to grab a few essentials and go. That’s when the crossbody bag is ideal! This small, easy to wear style features a long strap that you can sling across your shoulder for easy carrying. They are highly convenient and their hands-free feature is especially attractive for those girls on-the-go who just can’t be bothered with lugging around a handheld bag. Large messenger bags are especially convenient since they are both stylish and functional for carrying all your coveted possessions.

leather-envelope-clutch-blackCute Envelope Clutch Purse

An envelope clutch is often larger than a typical clutch and oozes style from its every square angle. These can be made of various fabrics and materials, but we are partial to cute leather clutches. They are perfect a night out on the town when you need a chic bag to complement your outfit. They’re the perfect size to fit your cell phone, keys and other essentials, plus they’ll look great in your social media pictures! A cool celebrity clutch will be a wonderful addition to your handbag collection.

large-womens-tote-bag-weekenderChic Oversized Tote Handbags

Ladies are often guilty of stuffing their handbags with virtually everything they think they’ll need throughout the day. Wallet, makeup, cell phone, tablet computer, even shoes have got to fit in there, and it’s a feat of engineering how we find space for all these items. Admit it, you’re guilty! Handbag fashion has (finally!) caught up with our need to be prepared for any possible scenario and huge stylish bags are totally on trend. These super size bags will carry all your essentials, and non-essentials too, and still look stylish. If you’re the type of gal who wants to carry her entire house in her bag, then an oversized tote bag will suit you fine.

Wanna shop these fabulous handbag trends? Click here to view our collection of chic handbags and clutches that will keep you looking stylish and win you lots of compliments.