Lightweight Handbags for Work and Travel

Posted by Lisa Ramos on

Black Italian Leather Crossbody Bag with Adjustable Strap


I discovered several years ago that it can be a real challenge finding an ultra light-weight stylish bag for everyday. I was so tired of falling in love with beautiful leather bags online or in a store, only to discover their heaviness which would be a killer on my body - shoulders, hands, back and hips. I kept asking myself, “why are leather bags so heavy?”  
After years of research and experience I concluded, it comes down to the design and construction of the bag. The weight of the leather, the lining materials and hardware all play a key role in a handbags total weight. In 2013, I started exploring handbag patterns and ways to reduce a bags weight. My fascination with product design and development evolved to starting my own handbag business, MONOLISA.  

Conversations About Bags

I have ongoing discussions with people I meet around the world at my shows regarding handbag styles, materials and how they are handmade. Work, travel and comfortable fashion are frequent conversations. Below are a some styling topics that come up during my many conversations about bags...

Black Italian Leather Crossbody Bag with Adjustable Strap

Italian Leather Clutch Style Crossbody Bag with Adjustable Strap - 4 crystals

What Bag Styles Are Good for Traveling?

If you are traveling around town or boarding a plane using a crossbody bag is ideal. It allows you to be hands free, move quickly and access those essentials quickly - drivers license, credit card and lipstick.

When Choosing a Travel Bag -
Ask  Yourself These Questions

(These questions will help narrow down your handbag selection) 

  1. How heavy is the bag? 
  2. Does the bag feel good when I put it on my shoulders or carrying it with my hands?
  3. How many outfits do I want to wear it with?
  4. Do I want an adjustable detachable strap feature?
  5. What color and shape speaks to my personal style?
  6. Is it easy to pack for traveling?
  7. Is it a style I see wearing for years to come?
  8. Do I want a handmade or mass produced bag?
  9. Do I want a bag made in the USA?

Black Italian Leather Crossbody Bag with Adjustable Strap

Italian Leather Clutch Style Crossbody Bag with Adjustable Strap - 2 crystals

What are Limited Edition Bags?

If you are looking for a bag that is not mass produced you may want to consider a limited edition. A limited edition bag means only a small number are made. The bags below are samples of handmade limited edition leather bags made in the USA. 

Light Weight Bags - MONOLISA Bags Made in California

Handbag Designer, Lisa Ramos Featuring Italian Leather Croc Crossbody 

The limited edition croc crossbody bags (above) with matching detachable straps are great style choices for someone on the go - ideal for carrying your cell phone and those small essentials. To add a touch of elegance, each bag has a closure featuring elegant crystals mounted in gold hardware. These crossbody bags are designed with a limited edition Italian vegetable tanned embossed croc leather - very classical high shine top finish, firm temper from vegetable tanning. Vegetable tanned leathers are more expensive because of the more skill set requirement and knowledge to tan the leather. This premium leather is handbag designer, Lisa's personal favorite leather to work with because of the limited edition leather and supreme quality. 

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Bold Bag Styles for Work

A bag with style, sophistication, light weightiness and storage space are just a few of those qualities that make a great work bag. A tote bag is a smart choice for work. If you are adventurous and like a pop of color go for bold, beautiful and sophisticated colors such as these blue and pink leather tote bags below. These lightweight bags are designed with an irresistible soft baby blue and pink colors. Floppy handbag straps no more. The bags comes with a matching removable strap holder that opens and shuts via snap. It is also designed with a double-sided leather bottom base to maintain beautiful bag structure and avoid the common sagging of bags.

MONOLISA Blue Leather Tote - Bags Made in California
Baby Blue Large Leather Tote Bag
MONOLISA Pink Leather Tote - Bags Made in California
Pink Medium Size Leather Tote Bag
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Classic Style Bags for Work


For a timeless style on the go, rushing to a meeting or lunch with friends consider a bag with classic features, simple yet elegant. These Italian Leather Croc Tote bags below are a nice choice for classic bag styles. What makes this bag unique is not only how ultra lightweight it is, but the design. The body of this hand crafted tote bag is designed with a single piece of leather, resulting in a seamless and sophisticated style.  Another great feature - floppy handbag straps no more. The bag comes with a matching removable strap holder that opens and shuts via snap.  It is also designed with double-sided leather bottom base to maintain beautiful bag structure and avoid the common sagging of bags. The black leather croc tote style is handbag designer, Lisa's everyday go to bag. 

Italian Leather Croc Tote with Fringe Crystal Design - Bags Made in USA
Black Italian Leather Croc Embossed Tote Bag
Brown Italian Leather Croc Tote with Fringe Crystal Design - Bags Made in USA
Brown  Italian Leather Croc Embossed Tote Bag

The video below is handbag designer, Lisa Ramos discussing the features of the croc bag collection. 

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Bay Area Handbag Designer, Lisa Ramos

How do I lighten the Weight of My Bag?

If you want to avoid those soar body parts previously discussed, carry those bag essentials only. Leave the rest at home! The more you put in your bag, the heavier it gets. It doesn't take much adding weight to a bag. The Iphone 11 weighs 6.84 oz equalling 0.4275 lb weight. That is almost half of a pound. Carrying loose change, cosmetics, credit cards and keys - all of those items start quickly adding up. Think about storing bag essentials in a small pouch, because it gives you great options for the future. If you are going out to do a quick errand and you don't want to carry much having an essentials pouch - drivers license, credit card and keys gives you the freedom of grab and go while leaving the big bag home. Also, if you keep an essential items pouch, it gives you the flexibility of switching to a new bag quickly. 

Brown Leather Pouch with Crystal Design - Bags Made in USA

Black Italian Leather Pouch with Crystal Design - Bags Made in USA

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On the Go 

MONOLISA Customer Wearing Italian Leather Handbag Made in USA

Haney Lane's Wine Ambassador, Concetta wearing an Italian leather crossbody bag and crystal earrings from the MONOLISA Collection made in California. 

MONOLISA Handbag Customer Reviews

 

Lara carries an Italian leather crossbody bag during the weekend and when she is traveling around the world for work. She is hands free and carrying only those bag essentials.  

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Designer Lisa Ramos Blog

California Handbag Designer Lisa Ramos' Posts – I will be taking you through some parts of my business experiences and talk about fashion, hopefully with a bit of humor, interest, honesty, inspiration and to the point. Until next time…  

 


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