Are Mini Bags the Death of the Clutch?

It’s mini mania these days…can the clutch survive?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always reserved my going out bag for one style: the clutch bag. My husband and I went out to dinner a few weeks ago and I styled my outfit with my favorite clutch. Not from a recognizable brand, but a deep purple colored leather clutch that I bought on a birthday trip to Rome a few years ago, which makes it very special and sentimental to me. One of my favorite bags, I was excited to use it on a date night. We moved to the suburbs recently and don’t get out of the house for nights out like we used to, so I couldn’t wait to have an excuse to use my treasured clutch. We went into the city for dinner and decided to get drinks at a trendy new bar downtown. Looking around, I felt very aware of how out of place I was with my clutch, a feeling I rarely get when using my bags. Scanning the room for everyone’s bags (a favorite hobby of mine), I spotted many beautiful handbags in action, but not a single clutch in sight. All I saw was mini after mini bag. Did I miss something? Are clutches on their way to being completely replaced? I knew mini bags were popular but I didn’t realize what a hit clutches were taking as a result of the mini mania.

I have dozens of photos from college where I’m quite literally clutching my favorite bag from my young adult years, a trusty Coach clutch, at every single party. I swear it was my most used bag from 2006-2010, I brought it with me everywhere. I see mini bags all the time, day or night, and clutches have traditionally been reserved for formal functions or nights out rather than daytime use, so the mini bag already has a leg up in the competition. It’s no secret that mini bags are the hottest thing in handbags right now, but I’ve said before that I can’t downsize to a mini bag because I carry too much stuff with me on a daily basis. While that remains true, I would be much more receptive to using one on a night out, in fact I think I would welcome it. My clutch has a longer hand strap that gets caught and wrapped around my wrist, which annoys me to no end. It really got me thinking, will there ever be a time I would opt for a hand held clutch over an easy on-the-go hands free mini bag? Maybe not.


As more designers are opting for mini bags, which almost always come with a cross body strap or chain, it’s not hard to see why this trend has infiltrated the wardrobes of fashion lovers worldwide. Candidly, I find the mini bag to be overrated for everyday life, although I’m obviously in the minority on that since mini bags are dominating at an all-time high. I’ll admit it, the mini bag is definitely more worry free than a clutch. You just strap it on and call it a day, whereas the clutch you have to make sure you don’t put it down and walk away or forget it on a table. For that reason, I can certainly see the value in the functionality of the mini versus the clutch. I do tend to carry less on a night out, and after weighing the pros and cons, I’m even surprising myself a little bit by thinking I may need one for date nights or nights out with the girls.  If you’re in the market for a new bag for a night out on the town, you’ll be spoiled for choices of mini bags, but good luck finding a solid selection of handheld clutches.

I probably won’t invest in anything too expensive since I’m usually at home on the couch on a Friday or Saturday night, but I think it’s worth having a mini bag in my arsenal. What do you think? Are mini bags causing the clutch to go extinct or is the style a classic that is here to stay?