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Reed Krakoff’s Ribbon Tote is fit for the first Lady

Michelle Obama with Reed Krakoff RK Ribbon Large Tote
We’ve dished about the First Lady’s fashions countless times, but there’s one side of her closet we haven’t really seen – her designer handbags. And we’ve often wondered which bag brand would be fit for Michelle Obama – a woman who has a glamorous side yet also wears fashion that is accessible to the masses. Well, she’s made her choice. She was spotted in Washington, D.C. toting a bag from one of our favorite American handbag designers, Reed Krakoff. Michelle paired the Reed Krakoff RK Ribbon Large Tote with a simple white blouse, black slacks and bright blue flats. We love that her handbag choice was understated yet chic, as she clearly has a knack for dressing that way too.
Michelle Obama with Reed Krakoff RK Ribbon Large Tote
Buy the Reed Krakoff RK Ribbon Large Tote for at $990, and buy Reed Krakoff handbags and shoes at Saks Fifth Avenue

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62 responses to "Reed Krakoff’s Ribbon Tote is fit for the first Lady"

  1. Radegunda says:

    Michelle has “a glamorous side”? A knack for being “understated yet chic”?

    That’s a joke, right? She is none of those things, and certainly not a style icon — or any other sort of icon — in a sane universe.

    • ‘Radegunda’ – No, it’s not a joke. This is my blog where I state my opinions. In my opinion, Michelle Obama is all the things I stated she is, and more. In my opinion, she IS glamorous and she IS a style icon. You’re free to disagree – that’s your opinion.

    • Anderson says:

      I agree it MUST be a joke! First of all, the whole outfit looks silly with those bright blue shoes. What is it with her and those shoes? They show up with everything! Maybe they’re really comfortable. Secondly, it’s excessive for her to be carrying around a $990 tote bag with the economic situation…oh, but I forgot…they do “excessive” all the time, don’t they? You’re right folks, “we” doesn’t apply to “them”. And as for the legislation regarding gifts to the first family, the regs says “member or employee of Congress” and she is actually neither, but one would think an FL would have better sense and accept that those regs should apply to her as well. As for being a fashion icon, I rather think she’s a ‘fashion don’t’, except maybe for that initial gown she wore for the inaguration. Really, does she have anyone helping her with choosing a wardrobe?? Most shots of her we see in the media and on-line show inappropriate dress for the occasion. Jackie-O or Laura Bush, she definitely ain’t! And why would one wear J Crew, WalMart, and Shoe Show and carry Reed Krafoff?

  2. Granny Jan says:

    A $1000 tote bag? I’d say that’s a bit excessive. The Obamas told us we’d have to sacrifice. Apparently, WE didn’t mean them.

    • ‘Granny Jan’ – I never said Michelle Obama paid $990 for the bag. I said that’s how much it costs. The fact is many designers send clothes/shoes/bags/jewelry to celebrities for FREE, in the hopes that they’ll be photographed with it. That’s likely the case here. And in case you didn’t know, Mrs. Obama often buys and wears clothes from stores like H&M and J. Crew, whose prices are significantly lower than $1,000.

      • Granny Jan says:

        It’s illegal to accept gifts. Yes, she does buy low-end: Lanvin, Mochino, Azzedine Alaia. The J Crew and H&M are just publicity stunts.

        • Handbag du Jour says:

          ‘Granny Jan’ – It’s illegal? Tell that to all the celebs, senators, congressmen, and tons of other people who receive complimentary designer goods. And J. Crew and H&M are publicity stunts? how do you know, do you work for the White House PR team?

          • PinkFlamingo says:

            A Member or employee of Congress may accept a gift only if it is unsolicited and the:

            * Gift is valued at less than $50. [House Rule 25 5(a)(1)(B); Senate Rule 35 1(a)(2)]
            * Aggregate value of gifts from one source in a calendar year is less than $100, though no gifts with a value below $10 count toward the $100 annual limit. [House Rule 25 5(a)(1)(B); Senate Rule 35 1(a)(2)]

          • Handbag du Jour says:

            So was it a gift? Was it unsolicited? Was it selected for her by a stylist? None of us knows. This is a blog about handbags, not about White House/Congressional gifting policies.

          • Granny Jan says:

            It’s not illegal for celebrities but politicians and their wives are guided by a code of ethics. It’s illegal.

            MO wore inexpensive, off the rack clothing for highly publicized events like the View, Tonight Show etc. You might know handbags but you don’t know politics.

          • Handbag du Jour says:

            Sorry ‘Granny’, I know handbags and politics and a lot more. If you think I don’t, then you shouldn’t be visiting my blog discussing it with me. My point is, none of us knows the backstory. You’re speculating that what she did is illegal, but do you really know if she purchased the bag (or her clothes, for that matter) herself, was gifted it by the designer, or given it to carry by a stylist? No, I’m sure you don’t.

        • LegalMama says:

          Please research b/f you comment. President and family can accept gifts as long as it’s not in exchange for official act (i.e., bribery). They only have to provide disclosure if over a certain amount. If it is that important to you, please feel free to do the research and review the disclosure forms.

      • Will the “free” goods be claimed on their taxes?

        She actually does look as if she dresses out of the “free” box. We used to have a communal one in the 60’s. If she IS paying for the look she puts out there, she was robbed.

    • Granny Jan says:

      Handbag du Jour, you’ve been very kind to let us comment on your blog. You’re probably not used to reading such up front criticism of Michelle O but it has a large following on the web. We think the Obamas are phonies and hypocrites. It’s as simple as that. The bag was emblematic of the hypocrisy.

  3. Michelle Obama has zero class.

    She tries to feign “class” by carrying large, expensive handbags and by wearing ill-fitting designer clothes.

    Michelle Obama needs to go to charm school. She needs to learn basic manners and protocol.

    • “MichelleIndependent” – Really? how many large, expensive handbags have you seen Michelle Obama carry? And exactly what basic manners and protocol does she need to learn? I don’t understand how carrying large, expensive handbags and by wearing ill-fitting designer clothes requires someone to attend charm school. What’s the correlation?

      I find it interesting that when I feature the handbags of Snooki, or others like her, no one mentions anything about class, charm school, etc., but the first time I cover the First Lady, who carries herself with grace, she gets bashed. Says a lot about our culture.

      • “Says a lot about our culture”

        What do you mean by that? Is that a sly attempt to play the race card? Forget it. The race card expired January 20, 2009.

        We should expect FLOTUS to carry herself with far more dignity, class, and grace than Snooki!

        The Obamas are hypocrites. They tell everyone else to tone things down and live more modestly but then
        comport themselves like King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

        • Handbag du Jour says:

          No one said anything about race except you.

          • No, you brought it up. You implied it.

            You thought you could sneak the comment in, but you were royally called on it.

            People have the right to criticize Michelle Obama for her hypocrisy and lack of class.

            Don’t like it? Too bad.

          • Handbag du Jour says:

            You’ve got quite the imagination. I don’t believe in implying anything. If I was talking about race, I would have said it.

            By the way, if I didn’t ‘like’ your comments, they would have already been deleted.

      • The fact that you follow Snooki speaks volumes about your utter lack of class and taste.

  4. Michelle Obama consistently shows a lack of manners and class.

    She put her hands all over Queen Elizabeth II, breaching protocol.

    Michelle Obama has, on several occasions, sat with her dress hiked up, and fat, greasy thighs showing. That shows a lack of class.

    Also, is Michelle Obama recording these handbag gifts as income?

    There is nothing understated about Michelle Obama.
    She is Tacky O.

    • Handbag du Jour says:

      Again, that’s your opinion. Not mine. I don’t know if she’s recording these handbag gifts as income because we’re not even sure if they are gifts. You’ll have to ask her yourself, or continue to speculate based on your own opinion.

      • bettyann says:

        Handbag du jour – you are so insightful. Please comment on MOO’s charm and grace regarding her hajib wearing, how lovely she looked, as she discreetly attacked an itch in her ether regions in full view of the camera, while walking with our president and was it the prime minister? In a mosque? Lovely, charming MEEchelle!

    • Generik says:

      Take a look at the photo above and you really think Michelle Obama has ‘fat greasy thighs’? I would love to see a photo of you and all the rest that want to make the same tired comments about Michelle Obama’s state of physical fitness. It’s truly stunning that all you right wing attack dogs can do is attack the First Lady based on what she ate or what she’s wearing lately. Meanwhile she’s trying to make positive changes for our countries youth by advocating healthier activities and meal options for our kids.

    • @MichelleIndependent

      You sound incredibly angry. This is a blog about fashion. Perhaps you should make your way over to Fox. Handbag du Jour did not insinuate or imply anything racial, there was no race card. Replace Snooki’s name with Halle Berry, Janet Jackson, Beyonce…would you have mentioned the race card then. You wanted him to imply that, which is why so readily typed your stupid remark.

      This bag was give to Michelle Obama by her sister-in-law while they were here in Hawaii over the Christmas holidays. Having said that, I am 100% certain this will do nothing to change your view and/or opinions.

  5. crf says:

    It’s fatuous crap like yours in all the style mags that keeps me from buying or reading them and when it comes from the mouths of designers or celebs it also keeps me from buying what they are selling. One day it may occur to them that the people they are trying to reach–like me–do not share their love affair with radical leftists…like the Obamas.

  6. creeper says:

    Bag…you miss the most salient point. When there’s not enough money in your checkbook to pay the electric bill, seeing the president’s wife lugging around a $900 handbag, regardless of WHO paid for it, will not endear her to you. And yes, it IS illegal if she didn’t foot the bill.

    You can’t put class on like a dress or carry it like a bag. It comes from inside and this person doesn’t have it.

  7. Lynn II says:

    The above posters are right. The price of that bag would pay a family’s gas bill for three months. When the Pres and MO tell us to “have some skin in the game” and we ALL must sacrifice, it’s more then hypocritical for MO to carry around a $990 handbag. You do realize there are many Americans who feed their families for four months on that kind of money? YEP, hypocrite is a good word for MO.

  8. Sine Qua Non says:

    H du J:

    Whether it is fair or not, each First Lady of the United States of America is likely the most high-profile person on the planet. Because Michelle Obama became the first-ever black FLOTUS, interest in her is understandably hyper-intense: People are fascinated by historical persons and events.

    Expectations upon EVERY First Lady are demandingly high since she represents every citizen of the world’s sole superpower nation. Nancy Reagan got trashed mercilessly for her designer wardrobe, but it would have been inappropriate for her to be less than perfect. Kudos to her for always turning out beautifully for any occasion.

    What many Americans resent is being told how fabulous Mrs. Obama is when anyone with Internet access and a pair of well-functioning eyes can assess how unbecoming to her position her fashion choices are. There seems to be a weird, sycophantic, frantic effort in the media to portray her as the epitome of class and taste, which is just downright baffling. If any other FLOTUS showed up in some of Mrs. O’s questionable outfits, the outcry would be immediate and well deserved.

    We are constantly told Michelle Obama is the second coming of Jacqueline Kennedy, who probably did more for the pillbox hat industry than any marketing/advertising ever could. Women WANTED to be that gorgeous and stylish. Imitation, it’s said, is the sincerest form of flattery.

    Take a look around: The ladies aren’t exactly Michelle wannabes.

    And no amount of gushing, praising words words words about this empress and her new clothes will change how she really looks, acts, and IS.

  9. Hi, Handbag du Jour,
    Can you please help me understand what features make this tote “worth” almost a thousand dollars (interior, structure, where it was made, special leather processing, etc?), and what makes it “go” with this outfit?

  10. sablegsd says:

    No class, no morals. That sums up moochelle.
    I could have gotten her a recyclable grocery bag for $1 and it would have the same effect on her “style” and “class.”

  11. Anonna says:

    Michelle Antoinette on display again with an accessory that would pay my rent for three months and leave something for food.

  12. sophie says:

    After my first summer as a camp counselor, I bought a one hundred dollar handbag with my meager earnings. It was the sixties and I was a teenager. I thought my mother, who was no slouch in the shopping arena, would faint. It was unseemly, in her view, for my age. I carried that bag through college and to my first job interview. I really got my money’s worth and it was beautiful, I still miss it.One tends to carry one’s life in their bag.
    So trust me, I have loved good, classic bags and carried them, for a very long time, emphasis on ‘classic’ and ‘long’.
    Along with some of the other posters, therein lies the problem for us. We see all this uber expensive ‘fashion’ once or twice, and never again, on the F.L. It seems gauche for someone who is supposed to be a role model in these very hard times, to keep treating high end clothes like they came from Target It is not personal, if she were Donald Trump’s wife, no one would care. Wearing clothing within her means, that she pays for herself would be the wiser choice, most folks know the Obamas, while far from poor, are not the Trumps, it is obvious she is not paying retail, if she pays at all.If she is not behaving honorably,she may regret it. If she is within the law, she may regret it more, when they leave the White House broke.

  13. Martine says:

    Michelle Antoinette “glamorous” “chic”


  14. SuZeeQ says:

    It’s a handbag. Would I pay $990 for it? No. But that’s just me. Do I care how much Mrs. O paid for it? No. She’s a grown woman who had her own money before becoming the First Lady. Whether she bought it for herself (full price or on sale) or it was a gift does really not impact my life in any way. If she can comfortably afford the bag without sacrificing growth in other areas or her/her family’s finances, then so be it! Just because the Obamas are in the White House doesn’t mean that they’re supposed to be martyrs for the rest of the country.

    Anywho, isn’t this blog about handbags and not politics? Why so much resentment over a handbag? It’s really not that deep, people! 🙂

    HDJ, keep doing what you do! I enjoy your articles and applaud your courtesy to your commentators. Kudos to you! 😉

  15. Trang says:

    Wow– this is a site about handbags and those of us who love them. Such nastiness is not warranted ladies! Like Miz. Obama’s bag and her style, and I like her bag. Let the woman wear what she wants.

    • mb says:

      “Such nastiness is not warranted ladies!”

      “Such nastiness” is an integral characteristic of the types who showed up to comment yesterday. I found this post via links on Drudge and a rightwing site. Inevitably, that means you’re going to get some of these fine, upstanding, rightwing, teaparty types who want to spread their hatred of all things Obama far and wide. Many of them are racists, but all are small-minded, nasty and too dumb to keep their absurd opinions to themselves.

      I applaud the host for his/her tolerance for them, I’m not sure I’d be as charitable.

      • Popsicle says:

        I am not a racist and actually don’t consider any of my fellow Republicans I know to be racists. Dems just loving claiming that and state it as a matter of fact. It helps them keep idiots voting their way. And I am not refering to blacks as idiots, so don’t even try to claim that.

      • larry says:

        mb: From a right wing Tea Party member, I love this country and would give my life for it, as thousands of others have done. I only wish the best for America. The founding fathers gave us life liberty and the pursuit of happiness noithing more. they meant that Goverment by the people and for the people, nothing to do with the Goverment taking care of you. I don’t hate Obama, I don’t like him or Machille and I think that he and Machille will go down in history as the worst President and first lady in American history. They have Zero Class. Deal with it.

  16. Fabian Starr says:

    Michelle is fierce, why not? She can have a bag if she wants, instead of coveting her possessions we should be proud of her for having such excellent taste and the ability to have such an expensive bag..

  17. larry says:

    I hope she will be as proud of America when we kick her no class ass out of the White House in 2012 as she was when America voted this mistake into office. There is no comparison between her and Laura Bush a real first lady and this slob.

  18. I stubbled across this blog by accident, but enjoyed reading comment. For being a venue to comment on fashion, I was more than impressed by the insightful political banter from both sides of the aisle.

    Now to add my “two cents” — I don’t like the Obamas at all, but I wouldn’t care about her $1000 bag or $540 tennis shoes or extravagant vacations if she and her husband would stop telling the rest of us how we should live. They are the definition of hypocritical as they say one thing (i.e. eat healthy) and DO the opposite (he shoves junk food in his mouth every chance he gets). Certainly they are not the first political people/leaders to behave in such a manner, but that does not mitigate the elitest sensibilities and lack of sensitivity they both have displayed (repeatedly) during a time in this country when many, many people (including myself) are suffering economically. They are tactless, to say the least.

    @ mb — your observation that many people who commented probably found this blog through a conservative site and thus “leaned right” in their opinions was very astute; however, your comment regarding the “TeaParty types” was not only incorrect, but it demonstrated your own “small-mind.” How can you assert that ALL TeaParty members are small-minded and dumb? When can every member of any group ever be defined in such narrow terms? How is what you said any different from saying “Asians can’t drive” or “Whites are racists” or “all Blacks like Obama just because he’s black.” So rather than deny yourself the chance to learn something new, why not take the time to actually understand the TeaParty’s point of view? You might be surprised to learn that not all of us are nasty, dumb or small-minded…

    @ Handbag du Jour, you are a good sport for “hosting” a discussion that severely derailed from your original intent, because you got linked through Drudge. It won’t last and you probably got “traffic” from a whole new demographic that otherwise wouldn’t know you were here! Just think of it as unintended advertising…for FREE!!! 🙂

  19. Trang says:

    MB, admittedly I am somewhere in the middle of things:)not quite dem, not quite repub, but what I do know is I am LOOOVE bags. And quite honestly, if you can afford a nice bag, and you want the nice bag, go for it! This is America and if you work hard and you are fortunate to have the resources, no one should knock you for it. To HDJ, girl, your site rocks. Ignore the posters and keep covering the arm candy.

  20. Kathy says:

    I am not sure why people think that the President of the United States is a poor man. He is not. President Obama was a Harvard graduate lawyer and they are not poor. Also he does take home a paycheck as President and after he retires he and all American presidents collect a pension of 1 million dollars a year until they die.

    Also just so everyone is clear…. the American government is set up in a way that no one has access to the federal money to spend on things that are not approved by congress. The President does not now nor has any President ever had access to federal money for anything. The money sits in the treasury and congress directs how it is spent. I assure you that there was no congressional bill for a designer purse.

    No one jumped on Jackie Kennedy for her gowns, hats, and dresses. No one ever asked Barbara Bush if those pearls were real and if they were they were worth a fortune. And do you remember Nancy Reagan’s designer gowns? Nancy’s gowns were made by James Galanos, Bill Blass, Adolfo, and Oscar de la Renta. Her white Galanos 1981 inaugural gown cost $10,000. No first lady has ever had a wardrobe that compared Nancy Reagan. So I say that if Michelle Obama wants to carry a $990 dollar designer handbag then she should. It’s a free country and I sure don’t want anyone to tell me what I can or can not wear or what bag I can carry.

    • Lynn Smith says:

      Class isn’t what you wear or drive or where you live. It’s an innate quality that one either has or doesn’t have. FLOTUS doesn’t have it!!! She looks tacky no matter what she is wearing.

  21. Andrea says:

    What’s with all these punks that call themselves men doing on a handbag site? bawaaaa!!!!!

  22. KatyLady says:

    I just stumbled upon this website and was totally entertained by all the comments! And it IS nice of the handbag lady to not censor. She is a class act.

    I’m not a fan of either Obama. She lacks class & he lacks good judgment – but hopefully, we’ll survive even this.

    The Cole Hahn bag is my choice…

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