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Trending now: The hobo bag is your solution to versatile and fun carryalls

During the peak Boho period in the noughties, the Olsen twins, Mary-Kate and Ashley were seen slinging toddler-size bags over their shoulders while still maintaining a ridiculously chic look. These hobo bags were all the rage among the party girls featured in the pages of Vogue in the early 2000s. It was the iconic carryall – placed in the same league as Dior’s original Saddle bag — before the arrival of micro purses, mini bucket bags and belt bags.

A hobo bag is made to carry just about anything. Its strap is strong and sturdy while its body is expandable, curvy and sometimes with a bit of slouch. It is flexible to fit pretty much everything from your denim jacket to a large water bottle and books.

Kate Spade New York pre-fall 2019 looks include some hobo numbers with the earthy slouchy shaped bag on the left and a duotone contemporary rendition for the millennials on the right. (Courtesy of Kate Spade New York)

The recent Kate Spade pre-fall 2019 collection witnessed a beautiful rendition of the hobo bag with a rounded design in earthy suede. We’ve also witnessed several outstanding hobo bags from the spring/summer 2019 runways including the supersized Bow Bag by Loewe and a leather iteration shaped like a boxer’s maize ball at Paco Rabanne – suggesting a comeback since its ‘disappearance’ circa 2005. The recent hobo bags are more structured, pared back with a sleeker look as compared to its raggedy origins.

If you want that freedom to lug and haul all your belongings wherever you want to go while still looking stunningly fashionable, you can always rely on the hobo bag – it will never let you down. Here are our top picks fresh from the latest spring/summer collections.

(Featured images courtesy of Loewe)

1 /5

Coach Harmony Hobo in Colourblock

The Harmony bag exudes a relaxed, nonchalant vibe of the hobo-style with its effortlessly elegant structure and minimalistic look. The sturdy carryall is crafted in a mix of glove-tanned and pebble leathers with three interior compartments and pleated side gussets that open up for a larger shape when you need some extra space.

2 /5

Nero Intrecciato Nappa Large Veneta Bag

The timeless hobo-esque Veneta Bag is getting a new interpretation, hand-crafted in soft nappa using the signature intrecciato technique. The seamless style is held with a concealed zip closure for an elegant finish. There are multifunctional pockets on the inside for you to put in daily essentials if you’re the organised kind.

3 /5

Marni Frame Bag

Minimalists would appreciate the Marni Frame Bag that comes in two colour ways. Its contrasting colour appliques on the exterior add an edgy flair to the bag. Take it to the office or a social event because the Frame Bag is perfect for both work and play.

4 /5

Kate Space Polly Convertible Shoulder Bag

The stylish slouchy silhouette of the Polly gives a relaxed vibe to the flexible and functional bag. The bag is crafted using soft-pebbled leather that gets better with age. It also comes with an adjustable shoulder strap that you can attach onto the Polly – converting it into a crossbody, which is perfect for young women on the go.

5 /5

Loewe Balloon Bag

This open bucket-shaped bag has a rectangular base that combines geometric structure with an unexpectedly soft body. Crafted from soft-grained calfskin, the Loewe Balloon Bag has an architectural touch with sleek trimming and an adjustable handle in the same leather. It is the perfect functional bag for everyday use or to carry to the gym.

Martin Teo


Martin has a bent for history and food culture, especially of the Peranakan heritage. Since the pandemic, he finds joy in plant parenting and continues to expand his collection of Philodendrons, Anthuriums, and Syngoniums. He's now on a lookout for the elusive Philodendron Florida Beauty to add to his urban garden.