Tassel Bags Are in Full Swing for Spring

Kirsten Dunst Band of Outsiders

Photos: Imaxtree

Tassel bags on the Gucci, Sonia Rykiel, and Louis Vuitton Spring 2011 runways.

One of the catchiest handbag trends for Spring/Summer 2011 is the tassel. Purses with lush, oversize tassels swung all over the European runways.

These are not the pudgy, stodgy tassels seen on preppy loafers. Instead, think of the long, slinky tassels hanging from the bottom of Chinese lanterns. They give a flirty swish without falling into hippie fringe.

The most flamboyant tassel tosser was Roberto Cavalli. On some of his Spring bags, leather tassels nearly got lost in thickets of fringe, studs, beads and seashells—an effect that looked remarkably like Keith Richards’s hair.

At Louis Vuitton, monogrammed shoulder bags lightened up with silky, contrast-color tassels at the clasp. The true gobstopper: the spherical Monogram Nova minaudière, covered in a Swarovski-crystal monogram pattern and finished with a narrow, gold and black silk tassel, priced at approximately $35,000.

Gucci anchored its leather tassels with monkey-fist knots. On the Malika clutch, tasseled cords cinched in the oblong. Chunkier, monogrammed tassels hung from the straps of shoulder bags.

The models on the Sonia Rykiel runway may have worked the dangling fringe best. With multicolored, beaded purse tassels hanging to their knees, they flicked the trim for maximum swing.

Diane von Furstenberg was the rare American designer to tap into tassels. Outsize leather tassels waved everywhere, from her structured day bags to her cavernous appliquéd drawstring pouches.

Emilio Pucci's boho bags verged on the costumey; tassels dangled from small, dark leather purses, woven pouches, and even a belt bag.

Whichever style suits you, look for a full, thick tassel so it doesn’t look clipped from a graduation cap.

Will you be a tassel swinger? Happily you won’t have to wait for the temperature to rise to test this out. Read on for more Spring trends you can wear now.