Every woman would love to receive a fabulous handbag as a gift. So here are a few handy tips you need to follow to make sure you purchase the correct one that will make it the ideal gift that she will cherish for years to come.

The material should always be a high quality leather and it’s origins should always be Italy as they use traditional techniques handed down from generation to generation to produce the finest leathers in the world. Not only is it beautiful but also very practical and if cared for, will last a lifetime. So before buying, whether it’s online or in a shop, check that the item is made in Italy with Italian leather. If it is not it is likely to be made in China or the Far East using inferior materials, resulting in a cheap low quality item that will not last.

There are different types of leather to consider such as ‘raw hide’ which is a thick vegetable tanned leather that will get more beautiful as it ages. This is usually used for more casual bags. Then there’s ‘saffiano’, ‘palmellato’ and ‘croc’. These are all hand embossed leathers ranging from cross hatched to crocodile patterns and are generally used in more structured classic handbags. Alternatively consider ‘patent’ leather with its high gloss finish. This can be also be embossed with patterns, which makes the bag very striking. And finally for a softer more casual looking bag, ‘suede’ leather. This is a leather with a napped finish that perhaps requires the most amount of care because it does not include the tough outer layer so is softer and less durable.

Take note of the sort of bag and the different colours that is used by the person you are buying for. This will give you a good idea of their style and the sort of handbag they like. I would not recommend a high fashion item as it will date really quickly and go out of fashion. For instance the trend for studs last autumn lasted a mere 6 months and by the time these items reached the shops it was already out of fashion.

Also, you will need to take into consideration their height and stature as some hobo bags and totes can be large and would not suit a petite person. So choose a size and shape that you think would best suit. For instance, a ‘baguette’ or ‘east west’ is a rectangular shape bag and is held by the top handles. A ‘bucket’ bag is shaped like a bucket with top drawstring closure, minimal internal compartments and shoulder straps, making it a casual unstructured bag. A ‘clutch’ is a small bag that has no straps or handles and is designed to be carried in the hand or under the arm and is generally used for evening. An ‘envelope’ bag is a flat bag with a triangular flap closure. It is designed to look like an envelope and can be used like a clutch, carried in the hand or under the arm. Perfect for evenings. Then there are ‘grab’ bags which are usually small and compact and are held by the top handles and sometimes come with a detachable shoulder strap making it very versatile and can be used day into night. A ‘hobo’ is a large unstructured bag with a top opening and minimal internal pockets. It is soft without structure, suitable for everyday. Possibly a ‘shoulder’ bag would be a good option as most women would already have one of these in their wardrobe. It can be of any size and has longer handles or straps and is carried on the shoulder and can be used 24/7 depending on the style. Finally the ‘tote’ bag also known as a ‘shopper’. This is a medium to large size bag with 2 grab handles and/or shoulder straps a zip top with minimal pockets and is great for everyday.

Simply do a little research and you should be able to buy a fabulous bag that will be loved and treasured and be the envy of all her friends.