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If you're like us, you've got a pile of tote bags ready at a moment's notice, but when you need something more functional, you're a little in the weeds. The cute options often have very little storage, and the more efficient bags often are absolute eyesores. Whether it's for business, travel, or just getting through the week, it's tough to find a bag that marries aesthetics with convenience.
Luckily Dagne Dover saw an opening here, launching a brand built around manufacturing "bags that get it." These bags are designed with your real-life, human experience in mind to help you stay organized while living on the go. But crucially, they manage to look damn good while doing it (when's the last time you saw a baby changing kit that felt designer?).
With several different collections and a signature bag for almost every life scenario, we figured it was time to dive into what this brand has to offer. No surprise, the first thing we found behind its thoughtfully-made products was an equally thoughtful origin story.
SHIFTING THE FOCUS
Dagne Dover's co-founders Melissa Mash, Deepa Gandhi and Jessy Dover were ready to infuse retail with some female perspective. They were used to working on ventures where the voices in the room were male, and lacked the lived experience to design what women really needed. Because the three of them brought financial, operation and design experience to the table, they were able to trust their own instincts and not water them down with outside input.
Their flagship was the Signature Tote ($255): a laptop bag, water bottle holder, and key leash all in one unassuming package. The success was undeniable, generating instant profits and paving the way for more styles. They've even expanded into selling baby bags, understanding that parenting products aren't a niche but a necessary part of life.
Through it all, they've stayed in touch with their core values, including sustainability. Many of their items are 100% vegan, and the Leather + Signature line uses Repreve recycled linings and dust bags made from recycled plastic bottles. They're also focused on ethical production and waste minimization, as well as donating excess inventory to the Shelter Partnership of Los Angeles.
All of that is very much commendable, but we wouldn't know about any of it if they hadn't made some killer products. So let's turn our attention to the extensive catalog and zero in on a few of our recs on where to start.
We sang the praises of the Signature Tote above, but we're even bigger fans of the multipurpose Large Daily Tote ($295). It's similarly packed with pockets and compartments, but the Pinto-colored vegan leather gives a perfectly sleek exterior. With enough room for a 16" laptop and even a change of clothes, it somehow still looks anything but bulky.
If you're in the mood for something funkier, the Tokyo Turnlock Tote ($249) is something of a head-turner. The namesake turnlocks slot into the adjustable handles, allowing you to change the handle length as your heart desires. This tote effortlessly shifts from handbag to shoulder carrier, and couldn't look better in the burnt orange Coyote color.
Remember in your school days when having the cutest backpack felt life-or-death? If Dagne Dover had been around, you would've swept the race hands down. The Dakota backpack is available in Large, Medium and Small ($215, $195 and $155, respectively) as well as in a range of colors from mossy green to heather gray. The brand’s touchstone seems to be always thinking of an extra bonus, and these backpacks come with a shoe bag included for that transition from office to gym.
The Indi diaper backpacks are available in the same three sizes ($215, $195 and $165), and here again a holistic approach is super evident. Even this bag has a laptop sleeve – because how helpful is a diaper bag that requires you to carry a separate briefcase? A mini changing mat and two stroller clips are included, plus a washable zipper bag for stashing away those used diapers. It's the bag for any parent on the go who wants just as much room for their essentials as they do for their baby's.
Travel packing is often when we're at peak Goldilocks: all our luggage feels either too big or too small. Find the exact size you need for any upcoming trip with Dagne Dover's Landon Caryall line, available in five sizes between Extra Large ($245) and Extra Small ($125). Even the largest size fits as a carry-on, and each comes with a crossbody strap in addition to handles. Perfect for freeing up those hands to juggle boarding passes.
Dagne Dover also makes plenty of smaller organizers to clean your luggage up with. We rolled our eyes upon seeing this $75 glasses case – perfectly content with the free ones we got from Warby Parker – until we realized it fits three different pairs inside. Take it from people who've tried to cram multiple cases into one backpack: that's a major space saver. The Hunter Toiletry Bag ($45) and Arlo Tech Organizer ($50) also fit much more than you'd expect from their deceptively small exteriors.
Lastly we've got the mini bags, because sometimes less is more, folks. The fanny pack has been back for a minute, and this one ($95) looks so good you'll forget they were ever a punchline. Here it's not just what's inside that counts: the credit card pocket is actually hidden on the exterior. That's a genius little bit of user design at work – understanding that few of us want to have to unzip every time we hit the check-out line.
One of DD’s newest offerings, the Nova Sling Bag ($155), demonstrates that this brand can get a little funky with it too. It's a quirky, streetwear-inspired design, full of contrasting textures and extra side loops for an asymmetrical silhouette. It's a lightweight bag that still fits tons, which by now is clearly the running theme here. Even the most playful designs still take functionality extra seriously.
FIVE MORE REASONS TO LOVE DAGNE DOVER
- DD runs its own secondhand market, Almost Vintage, cutting down on both consumer costs and emissions – because buying one used item emits over 80% less carbon than purchasing that same item now.
- The brand runs a great rewards program that gives you points towards purchases for every dollar you spend – plus bonuses for things like submitting a photo or leaving a review.
- DD regularly runs multiple sales at one time. There’s always lots to explore at an exceptional price.
- All of the materials are equally top-notch, from anti-stretch coated canvas shells to 100% organic cotton for better handfeel.
- The brand offers sizable discounts on large orders, making them a fantastic choice for company gifts or a thank-you to your bridesmaids.
Get the bag that's made for you at dagnedover.com!