As promised, here is my review of the Gucci Britt tote, which I recently purchased from My Favourite Aunt’s, a local consignment store.

Gucci Britt tote
Gucci Britt tote

First, a bit of background. I’ve never really been interested in Gucci bags before, with the exception of the reissue bamboo handle ones. I especially dislike the interlocking Gs canvas print (i.e. the Gucci equivalent of the LV monogram). So it was interesting when a similar Britt tote (the “dialux” version, I believe) turned up on the IG account of a re-seller I follow, and my first reaction was “ooh, I kinda like that hardware”. I know, it’s big and in-your-face but … I still kinda like it. The bag on IG was too expensive for what was essentially a whim, so I forgot about it.

And then!

I popped into MFA one day and there was the almost exact same bag – except in a larger size, and for a cheaper price. (That, by the way, is one of the reasons that MFA is one of my fave consignment stores – not just in Edmonton, but anywhere. In addition to mid-range brands like J. Crew and Anthro, they get the occasional top end designer stuff, and it’s always very reasonably priced.) I hemmed and hawed – more on that later – but ultimately bought it; at $200 for a pristine looking leather bag of generous proportions, it was just too good a deal to pass up for a bag addict like me. So how does it stack up?

closer up
closer up

It’s amazing!

Let’s start with looks. Obviously, this is very subjective, so take this as my 2 cents. Other than the hardware – which, as I’ve already said, I like despite its in-your-faceness – the bag is very plain and classic. If you turn it around, so people can’t see the logo, no one would necessarily recognize it for OMGdesigner. It has nice lines, and it’s right on the border between structured tote and slouchy hobo bag. The lining is an added nice touch – it’s a beautiful striped fabric. Looks-wise, I’d give it an 8.5/10.

pretty lining
pretty lining

The Britt really shines when it comes to functionality. If you love big bags, and don’t need very rigidly structured ones, this one’s for you. It has a LOT of room. There are no inside dividers, so it’s a bit of a “black hole”, but you would have no problem fitting a laptop in there. (The bag might get very heavy, though, and the straps would probably start to hurt.) It has the usual complement of small inner pockets, though. The straps are adjustable, and fit comfortably on the shoulder. If you don’t weigh down the bag with rocks, they don’t cut into you. There are feet on the bottom of the bag, which is always handy.

big bag. huge.
big bag. huge.

The only downside is that there is no zipper closure. The Britt is basically a clone of the LV Neverfull but slouchier because of the leather. This isn’t something that bothers me too much (I often leave my bags unzipped for easier access) but YMMV. For function, I give the Britt a 9/10.

As far as quality goes, it’s early days yet. However, the leather is soft and lovely to the touch. There are no scuffs, even in the spots that typically get the most wear (bottom corners, etc.), and no discolouration of the leather. This is no small feat since this is likely a 2007 bag – 8 years old. (Its former owner either didn’t use it much, or babied it a lot.) As I mentioned, the fabric lining is delightful. I would give it a 9/10 (so far).


[Edited to add: after about a week, I eventually noticed that the handles do show a little bit of cracking in the leather on the edges. Not very noticeable – obviously – but it’s there, so in the interests of full disclosure, I thought I’d mention it. Also, the gold of the hardware has either faded or rubbed off, so it almost looks silver in some lights. For an 8 year old bag, I still think it’s pretty darn impressive.]

For the price I paid for it, the Britt was a great deal (it originally retailed for around US$1800). I can see it becoming one of my everyday go-to bags. But it has created a bit of a dilemma for me. See, I already had 4 black bags, and now have 5 … which is at least one black bag too many. Two of them are special occasion bags, and I don’t mind holding on to them for reasons other than practicality. I love the Longchamp bag I recently thrifted as a “smaller black bag” option (especially for weekends), which leaves my MbMJ Aidan bag – a perfectly lovely bag, still in excellent condition. It’s not as roomy as the Britt, and for that reason, it’s less useful in my day-to-day life. Still, I’m loath to sell it, and take the risk that I’ll end up with seller’s regret, which has happened before. I also know I probably won’t use it often in the foreseeable future. Then again, it’s not exactly costing me much in terms of closet space. See what I mean? Wardrobe dilemma!

Marc by Marc Jacobs Aidan bag
Marc by Marc Jacobs Aidan bag

Should it stay or should it go?

16 Comments on Bag Love: Gucci Britt Large Tote

  1. Keep the Aiden! It’s such a classic MBMJ bag and with the MBMJ line ending soon it will be a collecters item. Plus it’s hard to find for a decent price anymore(I’ve been looking for a classic Aiden or Groovee for months and the prices are rediculous on Ebay for one in even decent condition).

    • I hadn’t thought of that! That’s a great idea.
      You haven’t had much luck on eBay? I seem to see lots for fairly decent prices (if you live in the US and don’t have to deal with high shipping costs and exchange rates). I actually recently decided to pass on another MbMJ Mag bag in a lovely cobalt colour, which in retrospect would have been a fantastic deal. Sigh …

      • I’m in Canada so shipping and custom fees kill any decent prices I find. I don’t mind them being a little beat up(I actually prefer the distressed look on his older bags, I think they look so much better when they’re aged)but I’m not willing to pay an arm and a leg for one.

        • I feel your pain! Do keep looking – it’s possible to still find gems occasionally. And try Kijiji too – I’ve seen older MbMJ bags pop up a few times, and the prices can be reasonable.

  2. I’d suggesting waiting and see what happens with your bags. In a few weeks’ time it might be more apparent which bag(s?) are out of favor now that you’ve got a pretty new one. And why black? Maybe there is another unstructured bag that you’ve fallen out of love with.

    • You bring up a really good point.

      For myself, I try to only have one bag of a particular colour. I tend to buy bags that are classic enough to work with any type of outfit I might wear (realistically, usually office stuff), so I don’t really need multiple bags of the same colour in different styles. I actually prefer non-black bags for the most part, because they add a bit of life to my outfits.

      I think that taking the wait and see approach might be best. I go through cycles with my bags, and they can be quite long cycles. I still miss a bag I sold after not wearing it much for 2 years (and being convinced I wouldn’t again) … oh, what I wouldn’t give to get it back now 🙁

  3. Go with your gut. If you don’t know what that’s saying to you, flip a coin and see what your immediate reaction is to the result (i.e. “yay, it said keep” or “boo, it said keep”…)
    If you’re still unsure, my granny always said “when in doubt, don’t”.
    All that said, maybe you just need a little time to get used to the new arrival and where it fits in the family. Have fun!

    • Haha! That is so funny – I use the exact same trick. My gut is telling me that if I tried it with the bag, I would be sad if the coin told me to sell it. So I guess I can cut out the middle man, and just listen to my gut, LOL!

  4. Definitely keep it. The MbMJ bag is gorgeous and I think you may regret selling it. You might find yourself tiring of the Gucci tote and this way, you can switch back and forth between the two if you ever get the urge.

  5. Oh wow, that’s a fantastic deal on the Gucci!

    I don’t think I’d sell the MbMJ bag either because it sounds like you’re not feeling sure about it? I’m definitely the last person to ask about selling bags or editing down a bag collection, with my collection of mostly large navy or black bags and my inability to decide on whether to sell one I haven’t carried in years…

  6. I am not sure about keeping it. Here in Australia I wouldn’t put as much designer weight on the MbMJ name. Not compared to the stunning classic designs you are now favouring. If it were me, I would add to my Salvatore Ferregamo collection lol!

    • It’s not so much about the designer name for me with these bags – they’re just really, really good bags. I probably shouldn’t even think about selling it – no one ever had too many bags 😉