Today I’m reviewing a bag which is one of my current favorites – the Chanel square mini.
I thought I would be taking a long break from my mini bags after I had a baby, but after I got my routine down, I realized that the opposite is true – I use my mini crossbody bags more than ever, to hold my necessary essentials while I’m running around and don’t want to be weighed down by a large diaper tote. I hope this review is helpful to some of you considering this bag!
This blue chevron mini is the first and only mini I have from Chanel, and my only regret is I wish I had started buying them earlier, when they were a lot cheaper (and easier to find!). I’d been on the fence for a while, but when I saw that Chanel had introduced this cobalt blue shade in chevron caviar for the spring 2016 season, I knew I had to pick one up. The color just struck me!
Like the rest of the classic flap lineup, the mini has a back pocket where ticket stubs, ID cards, receipts, etc can be stored. I’ve also put my house key in here during short walks (it doesn’t fit a thicker car key).
A little detail I’d like to point out and my least favorite design aspect of the mini – the way that the strap’s interwoven leather is closed. It’s basically just cut off abruptly. Of course I know that the strap has to be reattached in some way, but somehow I don’t think Hermes would ever finish a bag like this. But I wanted to show this detail, in case someone buys one and thinks it’s an one off flaw.
Now one thing about the mini – it really is mini! And the square one, which I have, fits even less than the rectangular version. I usually pack mine one of two ways.
The first is the way I prefer – little card case, sunglasses in a slip case (you can find a similar leather pouch here), iPhone (I have the giant 6+), and favorite NARS lipstick, plus car keys (not pictured).
Sometimes I’m too lazy to swap out my cards from my regular wallet to a card case – in those times, I can only fit my phone, wallet, and keys (not pictured).
I know that a likely question from this review would be one about the mini versus the Chanel WOC (wallet on chain, see my review here). Although I’m still a big fan of the WOC style and how easy it is, the strap is way too long on me naturally when I wear it crossbody. Here’s a comparison so you can see how the two hang.
My go to way to shorten the straps on my WOC are to cross them over, like shown above. When I do that, the WOC becomes significantly shorter – here’s the length of WOC compared using this method, versus the square mini.
I know that some of you out there are shorties like me, so wanted to provide lots of pictures.
Chanel mini fans – I’d love to hear about your experiences with the bag! Do you love yours, and do you have the rectangle? That’s the next one on my (never ending) list.
Some Q&A on the Chanel Square Mini – if you have more, please leave in the comments and I’ll try to answer.
What’s the retail price? As of August 2016, $2700 in the USA.
What’re the dimensions? 6.5” x 5” x 2.5” inches. The chain drop can vary, between 19-21” inches. The square caviar chevron is a little bit shorter, around 18”. I’m 5’1, and you can see how it looks on me crossbody.
Square vs. rectangular mini? I love that the rectangular fits more (and the shape makes it easier to drop your phone in), but the strap is just a “tad” too long to be perfect on my short frame. I’d still probably get one if the right combination came up – the length isn’t so bad. The square length however, is perfect for crossbody.
Square mini vs. WOC? Both! But if I had to pick only one, I’d go with the square mini – fits a bit more.
The combo I want is sold out. How do I get one? I’ve come to realize that Chanel minis can be difficult to get ahold of, especially in certain color and leathers. If you have your heart set on a particular combination, I’d keep checking sites such as Fashionphile, and The Real Real.
Caviar or lambskin? I love both. Caviar is hardier, but lambskin can do well too, as long as you aren’t too sensitive to scratches. I would try to get a darker color if you’re going for lambskin and are going to wear the bag crossbody all the time, since it’ll likely rub against your pants, and dark denim can be a problem.