Your Ultimate Guide to Crossbody Bags

Can’t decide which handbag to buy? Are you confused by the millions of choices available to you right now? Don’t worry, we’ve got you! Learn about the crossbody bag and why it's the next bag you need to add to your closet right now.

We'll also be your personal shopping assistant today and guide you through the entire process of making the right choice. Oh and did we mention there's bonus styling tips at the end?

Dive in to find out!

What is a Crossbody Bag?

Crossbody bags are a type of bag that are worn across the body from shoulder to hip, that are equal parts stylish & functional. They can comfortably be worn hands-free across the chest, torso, or hip, simply by moving the long, adjustable strap. This convenient positioning enables you to keep your items secure while using your hands to send a text, drink a coffee, or perform other daily tasks.

The crossbody is hands down the most versatile bag in the world of fashion right now. The wide variety of shapes, colors, sizes and materials ensures there's something for everyone and all occasions. They have gained immense popularity in recent years among both men and women, owing it all to their functional design and fashion appeal.

This is a bag that has lived many lives. The earliest form of the crossbody originated centuries ago, where people would tie cloth together to create pouches that would be worn across their chest to help them carry tools & food. Then came the shoulder & messenger bags that were used by bicycle courier boys who needed convenient bags to carry mail while they were riding. But it wasn’t until the 19th century that crossbody bags became a staple of the fashion world.

In the 1950s, designers recognized their appeal beyond practicality and began incorporating them in their collections. The introduction of materials like leather and suede, along with different colors, patterns, and embellishments, transformed them from practical bags into must-have fashion items.

Why are Crossbody Bags so Popular?

Today, crossbody bags continue to dominate both the women’s & men’s fashion scene. Here are some of the top reasons why this bag has continued to rise in popularity:

Hands-Free Functionality

One of the key reasons for their popularity is their practical design. Crossbody bags allow you to carry your essentials while keeping your hands free for other activities. This makes these bags both stylish and convenient whether you’re on the go with a tiny tot, traveling, or shopping.

Privacy & Security

The long strap worn across the body keeps your phone, wallet, and other necessities close to your body. And with zippers, straps, and buckles to keep everything secure, the risk of theft or loss decreases significantly.

Your Most Versatile Accessory

The crossbody comes in various shapes, sizes and materials, meaning there’s an option for everyone and every occasion. From compact versions for an evening out to larger ones for everyday use, these bags effortlessly combine practicality with a fashionable edge. They can be found in casual, formal, or even high-fashion designs, making them suitable for a variety of outfits and settings. Their versatility allows them to seamlessly transition from day to night, making them a go-to accessory for many.

Ease of use

The crossbody style offers easy access to belongings. The bag rests conveniently at the hip or torso, making it effortless to reach into and retrieve items without having to remove the bag entirely. This accessibility makes them practical for everyday use, as well as long travel days through airports & road trips.

Multi-Compartment Organization

The crossbody usually comes with one roomy, main compartment for essentials, as well as multiple zippered, hidden internal pockets, and external flaps. You can easily slide things in & out without having to sort through unnecessary clutter, saving you time when you need it most..

How to Choose the Right Crossbody Bag

There are several factors to consider when choosing the right crossbody bag that fits your style & needs; here are the most important ones:

Determine the Occasion

Just like any other accessory, you must determine the purpose & occasion for wanting a crossbody bag. Are you looking for an everyday bag, a travel companion, or a statement piece for special occasions? Understanding your requirements will narrow down the options and make your selection process easier.

Consider the Size & Capacity

The next step to consider is what you’ll carry inside your bag. Crossbody bags come in various shapes and sizes, so it's crucial to choose one that meets your needs. Consider the essentials you typically carry for that specific occasion – if it’s only your phone, car keys, or wallet, a smaller one will do. But if you plan to carry sunglasses, tissues, and makeup, you’ll need to choose a larger one with organized pockets.

Choose one with a wider strap if you need to carry more weight so that it doesn't dig into your shoulder and the weight is evenly distributed. Chain straps like the Tati Crossbody are sleek, elegant, and stand out from the crowd, but they are best suited to small to medium-sized crossbody bags. You can also switch shoulders from time to time for comfort if needed.

Choose Sustainable, High-Quality Materials

The material of your crossbody bag plays a significant role in its durability and aesthetics. Choose high-quality, sustainable materials like leather, nylon, or other durable fabrics that can withstand everyday use.

At Latico leathers, our artisanal collection of crossbody bags is made from high-quality, sustainable leather. These durable, hand-crafted bags can withstand daily wear & tear, maintaining their quality & appearance for years to come. And over time, they’ll develop a leather patina, a natural process that adds beauty & character as it’s exposed to dirt, sunlight, and oils. The leather is also inherently resistant to dirt & water, and is easier to clean & maintain than other materials like nylon, making it the preferred choice for many.

Functionality and Features

Look out for features that help you stay well organized, comfy, & stress-free. Crossbody bags often come with exterior pockets to hold your cell-phone, glasses & keys for easy access. These pockets are either hidden, zippered or slits. Pick an option with snap/magnetic closures if the main or side pocket has flaps, and leather/fabric pulls if it has zips for ease of opening & closing.

Go with heirloom creations like Pippa or Bianca if you want fine-tuned interior organization with divided sections, credit card slots, pen holders & backwall pockets. These bags put Marie Kondo to shame, literally. If you’re a minimalist then less is more with sleek designs like Miller or Ezra that have just enough space to hold your basics.

Multiple straps are the cherry on the top when it comes to the crossbody. You can wear it as you like it- across the body or simply remove the straps and use it as a clutch or tote. Safe to say, this is the only bag you need in your closet!

Consider your personal style

Crossbody bags come in a variety of styles, from classic and minimalist to bold and statement-making. Once again it comes down to the occasions you plan to use the bag for and your personal taste. Opt for versatile designs and neutral colors like black, brown, or tan to complement a range of outfits and settings. At the same time don't shy away from exploring bolder hues or unique patterns to add a pop of color to your ensemble and make a statement.

How to Wear & Style Crossbody Bags

Here are some top tips and ideas on how to wear and style crossbody bags for different occasions and outfits.

For Everyday Use

When it comes to casual, everyday outfits, choose a neutral tonne, medium-sized crossbody bag. You can easily match it with various outfits, making it the perfect choice for shopping, a night out, and everywhere in between. Pair it with a simple jeans-and-tee combo or a flowy dress for a relaxed and effortless look. Make sure you adjust the strap length to ensure the bag sits comfortably on your hip, allowing you to move freely throughout the day.

For Travel Days

Crossbody bags are excellent companions for travel days. Keep your hands free while navigating through airports or exploring new destinations. Select a lightweight and compact option with multiple compartments to keep your passport, boarding passes, and cell phone organized and secure. Pair it with comfortable travel attire such as leggings, a cozy sweater, and sneakers, and you’re ready to take on the world.

Dressy Outfit

The golden rule to follow when styling the crossbody with dressy outfits is to choose a bag that compliments your ensemble. Opt for a smaller leather handbag with metallic accents or a sleek quilted pattern. Pair it with a sophisticated cocktail dress or a floor length gown for a formal event. You can also make it a statement piece by wearing a bag with bold colors, unique textures, or eye-catching prints. Rock the classic little black dress with a twist by throwing on a vibrant red or yellow crossbody bag to create a stunning contrast.

work Outfit

To rock the chic office look, choose a structured crossbody bag that can easily hold your daily planner, makeup, and snacks. A high-quality leather crossbody will turn heads in every workplace, setting you up for your daily girl boss moment. Pair it with tailored trousers, a blouse, and heels for a polished and sophisticated look.

Equally suited for both men and women, the crossbody bag has evolved into a fashion industry staple, offering hands-free functionality, enhanced security, effortless versatility, easy access to belongings, and organized compartments. When shopping for your perfect crossbody, make sure to consider the occasion, size, material, functionality, and your personal style. Opt for full-grain leathers, multiple pockets, and neutral tones that match every style on any occasion. Whether you’re traveling the world or dominating the board room, the crossbody bag goes with you, transitioning seamlessly.