The Mini Bag Trend: Is It Here To Stay?

by Sara Wennerstrom / Aug 08, 2022

Micro bag, tiny bag, tiny purse – whatever you call it, you know the mini purse. Small versions of their full-sized sisters, mini bags are seemingly everywhere on the runway, Fashion Week, and walking down the street. But how did such an impractically sized bag get so popular, and more importantly, are they here to stay?


What’s considered a mini bag?


When designer Simon Porte Jacquemus unveiled his take on the mini bag, the purse that hit the runway clocked in at a mere three inches wide. Although this fits squarely in the “micro” bag category – a distinction we’ll talk about later – it goes to show just how flexible the term “mini bag” can be.

Mini Doctor BagMini Doctor Bag in Dolce Buff

In many instances, the mini bag is simply a smaller version of a label’s signature bag. (For some inspiration, check out the mini version of our iconic Doctor Bag, which measures 9.5 inches across). These bags may not feel ultra-small, but as miniature versions of their mother models, they still fit the definition.


In some cases, the mini bag is quite literally just a very small purse. Depending on the designer, these mini bags can be as large (a term loosely used here) as six inches or larger across, or even smaller than the JACQUEMUS model, with some measuring an impossibly tiny two inches.


When did the mini bag trend start?


Mini bags made their way back onto the scene in Fall 2017, when Jacquemus revived the trend. But their invention and initial entry into the fashion world go back several decades.


Small bags first appeared in the 1960s, reflecting the shorter skirts that famously marked the trends of the time. While these styles weren’t quite as miniscule as the tiny bags celebs like Kylie Jenner and Blake Lively have been seen carrying, they set the stage for shrinking purses not designed to hold everything that goes in the average handbag.


Is the mini bag still in style?


While plenty of fashion commentators have written the mini bag’s obituary, the trend hasn’t slowed down just yet. Major fashion houses, including Dior, Versace, and Yves Saint Laurent, currently offer their own takes on the mini bag. However, as COVID-19 restrictions lift and more folks head out and about, the need to carry around more items may gravitate trendsetters to a more practical bag choice – even if you no longer need to carry around a mask in many places. But for now, the mini bag is here to stay. 


What’s the difference between a mini bag and a micro bag?


Imagine the tiny mini bag, with just enough space for your smartphone (sometimes), your keys, an ID, a credit card. Now shrink that even more. You’ve arrived at the micro bag, a smaller version of the already-small mini bag. In some cases, you may even find a mini version and a micro version of the same style.


Mini bags and micro bags are both incredibly small versions of the handbags already in your closet, but the “micro” moniker is reserved for only the smallest of the smallest. Just like the mini bag’s dimensions, there isn’t a hard and fast rule that delineates what precisely makes a micro bag so. However, as you browse your mini bag options, it’s safe to assume that purses labeled “micro” are significantly smaller than mini bags.


Mini bag styles and examples


Zoolander may call them “purses for ants,” but we call these mini bag styles versatile, beautiful, and yes, even practical.


Mini crossbody bag


Just like their full sized counterparts, mini crossbody bags are worn across your trunk. The long strap loops over one shoulder, and the small bag sits at the opposite hip (or dangles from your side, if you choose to wear your crossbody like a shoulder bag).


Mini top handle bag


A versatile option that’s great for going out, the mini top handle bag can be carried around without weighing you down. Large enough to hold a phone and a small tablet at the same time, the right mini top handle bag meets the criteria for a small purse without giving up on precious space.


Mini tote bag


“Mini” and “tote bag” may seem like polar opposites, but these practical yet on-trend options are one of the hottest mini bag options you’ll find. Many iconic designers have miniature versions of their famous tote bags, taking the same beloved shape and style and shrinking it to fit the mini label.


Mini shoulder bag

Strati Sporta in NylonStrati Sporta in Nylon

No different than their full-sized inspirations, mini shoulder bags keep the same strap length so the bag can still be held comfortably, but the purse itself shrinks to miniature size. Small enough to be carried as a clutch but large enough to hold most smartphones, options like our Strati Sporta check all the mini boxes while retaining all the space you need for your essentials.


Mini backpack

Circa Bag in Pebbled ChestnutCirca Bag in Pebbled Chestnut

It might not fit your laptop, but the mini backpack is roomy enough to comfortably carry your smartphone and other essentials across your back. And the best options – like our Circa bag – can convert into a mini top handle bag or a mini crossbody bag.


How to style and wear a mini bag


Ready to give this trend a spin? Get started with these outfit ideas.


  • - Pair a neutral bag with a loud pattern. A neutral mini bag makes a statement against bright colors. Plus, a neutral mini bag has the advantage of working with multiple outfit options.


  • - Go bold against a neutral backdrop. Flip the script! A bold mini bag stands out in a stellar way against cream, white, brown, or black.


  • - Wear one with a mini dress. Revisit the trend that started it all. A mini shoulder bag or crossbody pairs perfectly with a short dress.


  • - Try a sporty two-piece and a crossbody mini. The monochromatic, coordinated two piece is just the right backdrop for a mini bag’s metallic chain draped across your body.


  • - Match with another accessory. Whether that’s shoes or sunglasses, matching your mini bag to something else in your ensemble elevates your whole vibe.


  • - Don’t forget your nails. All eyes are on you – or more accurately, your mani – when you’re carrying a mini or micro bag. Whether you go for a glimmer like Lizzo or prefer a lacquer in a more timeless shade, head to the salon before you step out with your bag.


Go big, think small


Trying out the mini bag trend doesn’t mean you have to leave your keys and purse behind. A smaller version of a beloved classic perfectly embodies this fab fad while keeping your essential safe and close at hand. Senreve’s mini bag collection is your first stop in your foray into mini bags, offering our most beloved styles in a smaller size. With many color and material options to choose from, the right mini bag is within reach.