I traded my wicker bag for a net bag recently. I chanced upon it when I was in Zara one day, and have been using it as my everyday bag.
The appeal is in its no-nonsense style. You put everything you need, big or small, without much fuss.
There are no pockets and zippers. You can see and easily locate what you need. No tiny side pockets where surprises lurk, so you don’t forget anything.
New York Magazine’s online shopping site The Strategist says the net bag first appeared in the 1920s in Czechoslovakia as a grocery bag. In the ’60s and ’70s, it became a fashion item in France. Picture the net bag being used for baguette shopping and beach trips, while walking in sandals and a linen dress in the middle of summer.
In recent years, the net bag steadily became popular. In 2015, Phoebe Philo’s Céline, always one for chic practicality, offered up a blue cotton version. In 2017, Vetements featured a red one in a lookbook.
The year 2018 may have seen the rise of the bead bag, but the net bag was also there, hanging from the arms of people who needed the ease brought by seeing your stuff through a clear vinyl bag, but wanted a more eco-friendly option.
Now they’re everywhere. You can see them in different materials, too—rope, cotton, abaca and so on.
Those who can’t be bothered to put all their things in pouches have adapted the leather bucket-inside-a-net bag look. Try the Staud Moreau bag if this concept appeals to you.
Beach essential shopping spot Cabanna offers a few net bags as well—for your towel, sunscreen, tanning oil and other swimming needs.
There are many other iterations of the net bag and I feel there will be many more as the trend continues. All you have to do is cast your net wide to find the version that best suits your needs.