As the years changed and my priorities changed, I couldn’t justify spending hundreds of dollars on a bag when I could buy a plane ticket for the same price. These days, my bags are more quirky and fun – Cath Kidston London-print totes, a bag I got at Epcot in the shape of a Tudor House – but I still appreciate a quality designer purse every once in a while. More often than not, I pick something up for under $100 at Nordstrom Rack or the designer outlets near me. But thanks to Meghan Markle, I’ve discovered a new brand: DeMellier London.
When I saw Meghan arrive in Wales with a gorgeous green leather handbag a few weeks ago, it looked instantly familiar. I’d seen it on Instagram and loved the bag, but figured it was super expensive and didn’t even bother looking into it. But that day, I went to the DeMellier website out of curiosity.
Turns out, the bag was on sale for $225 in green, and even lower in some of the other colors. When I spotted the taupe bag I knew it was the perfect color for me. While Meghan’s bag is nice, the forest green shade just didn’t seem very versatile to me. I love that taupe will match with any outfit, and I can wear my bag year-round and not feel like it looks too fall/winterish. Not to say there’s some sort of “you can’t wear forest green in summer” rule, but there’s something about the green I just don’t love as much.
Even better, the taupe version was on sale for $200 off, making the bag $195. I had some Christmas money to spend, so I pulled the trigger and placed my order that same day, Thursday, January 18, and it arrived shockingly fast on Monday. I can’t even get a package to arrive in a decent amount of time from Gap and they’re here in America!
Bags that do good
Meghan is quite vocal about her charity work and it’s no surprise that many of the brands she chooses to support have some sort of humanitarian ties to them. DeMellier actually donates a vaccine to a needy child for each bag purchased through their charity, A Bag, A Life. Make no mistake, Meghan didn’t carry this bag just because it was pretty. Just like “The Kate Effect,” where anything she wears tends to sell out, Meghan certainly knows the impact her fashion choices have on businesses. This is one small way she can make a difference by supporting a brand she knows will give back to charity.
The Mini Venice Arrives!
DeMellier does a really nice job of packaging (treat yourself to the free gift wrap!) and they even offer free monogramming on the strap. I wasn’t sure what it would look like in person so I opted for a simple “K” instead of my three-letter monogram or a word.
I fell in love with my bag straight away. The taupe is a really beautiful almost gray, almost lavender, almost tan color, and it just feels expensive. All of DeMellier’s bags are handcrafted in Spain, and the attention to detail is obvious. My only gripe (and it’s not even really a gripe because I don’t carry much in my bag) is you can’t fit much in it. So basically the exact opposite problem of Meghan’s Everlane tote (see my review). This is the perfect everyday bag if you don’t require a huge amount of space for various things. If you do, I would reserve this for more of a night out bag.
The Mini Venice itself isn’t that small in the grand scheme of things, but the interior does stay true to the name. This is what I can fit in the bag, with the addition of my phone: Wallet, lipgloss, hand sanitizer, Kate’s foldup Ray Bans, travel pack of tissues, tiny bottle of ibuprofen. To be honest, this was a bit of a squeeze and to reach anything in the bag I pretty much have to take everything out. In the future, I’ll save space and use a slim Coach card case I have instead of my full wallet.
I do like that there’s a little pouch sewn in with a “my phone” label, so it keeps your phone very easily accessible. There’s another small zippered “my things” portion on the other side of the bag as well, but that was just barely big enough to fit a lipgloss.
The bag doesn’t feel overly heavy, which I appreciate, and I like the versatility. You can remove the strap if you want to carry it by the handle, or you can wear it crossbody style, or on your shoulder.
Where to get it
You can order the Mini Venice on the DeMellier London website. Unfortunately, the bag is now back up to full price at $395 in all colors (hey, they know the demand is there) and it’s also only available for pre-order to be delivered in March. Luckily I didn’t hesitate, because the bag is now completely sold out in taupe and it’s not even an option on the website for pre-order. If you’re interested in a similar color, “dusty rose” is the closest shade to my taupe bag … I’m personal a big fan of blush pink as a great neutral.
I love this bag! The socially conscious aspect makes me love it even more, and I’m so glad Meghan is supporting brands that make a difference. The Mini Venice is so well made and luxurious, despite coming in at a reasonable price point, and the top handle and removable aspect of the strap means you can wear it with both dressy and casual outfits for so many different occasions.
The first time I used it we were at a school event, and I was walking through the parking lot swinging my bag by the top handle. I was also wearing my white wrap coat, and I said, “I feel just like Meghan Markle!” Isn’t that what we all want: To feel like a royal even on a random Thursday morning in the school parking lot?