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If there’s something that screams summer more than a pair of wedged sandals, then it’s got to be the raffia straw bag. The first time we laid our eyes on one was during a holiday in the South of France whilst strolling through a local market. A whole array of small to large straw bags all pretty much in the same style were available for purchase at every corner – which was very fitting considering the beach was a mere meters away and the bag makes for the perfect beach bag to store all your essentials.

Though it didn’t make an appearance in a less tote-style bag up until a few years ago, it remains an ultimate classic and indispensable accessory, come summer time. Thanks to fashion and constant fluctuations in what’s considered *trendy*, a new wave of (mostly South American) brands have dedicated themselves to creating solely straw bags – ranging from colorful splashes of colour to embroidered clutches, their creations are truly visions and show the craftsmanship behind the production of each and every one of them.

I mean, as I peruse the Internet right in this moment, in quest of my next Spring/Summer 2018 buy, I can’t help but stomp across a gazillion options of straw bags. Oversized, mini, embellished, adorned with beads or leather details, or simply beach appropriate. What’s even better? The different styles and sizes allow you to keep the same style from the beach to night-time. Forget sweat marks on a suede clutch or leather cross-body bag, the straw bag is light, easy to travel with and comes in a ton of variations. The cherry on top? The affordability factor, which is undeniably what makes us experience such a tough time trying *not* to buy 10 bags with just one click.

Fact is, the (only!) four bags I took on my summer vacation last year included the much coveted Ark bag by Cult Gaia, a seashell shaped hard clutch by Kayu, a soft version with a chic black painted stripe by Sensi Studio I got on The Outnet, and a medium-sized tote I got at a local market in Mexico City with red and green stripes adorning its sides. The total cost of all 4? Not even amounting to last season’s much sought after leather belt bag.

While we usually are prone to falling into an online shopping rabbit hole where we suddenly find ourselves on page 38, and wonder where the past 3 hours went, this time we wanted to nail down the ideal selection. Scroll through to find larger totes to throw in anything and everything from a beach towel to a change of clothes, to embroidered and tasseled styles, adding a long handle and strap on other occasions.

SHOP OUR SELECTION OF SUMMER’S QUINTESSENTIAL BAG

Images: Christian Vierig via Getty Images

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