It’s the time of year to break out the L.L. Bean tote bags! I’ve had my boat and totes for years and they’re an absolute staple for everything from grocery store trips to beach days. I use it nearly every day, including as my everyday tote anytime I need to bring more than just a phone, wallet, and lip gloss in the summer. I like to have one on hand that I keep nicer (read: not covered in dirt and stains from throwing it anywhere and everywhere), and that I can use as my go-to bag.
Personally, I love the open top for everyday, but I am glad that my large weekend L.L. Bean tote has a zip top so that I can throw it in my car and not worry if it falls over, or I can leave it in a hotel room and not have my stuff spilling about all day. Together, I love the way they look as a set. I’ve leaned into the Regatta Blue, though I’m tempted to get two in Dark Green, too, which, to me, reads as the most timeless of all the colors.
You can read my full L.L. Bean Boat and Tote review here.
Why the L.L. Bean Tote Bag is So Iconic
So why is the L.L. Bean tote bag so iconic? First of all, it hasn’t changed a bit. My first L.L. Bean Boat and Tote that I got back in 2005 looks exactly the same as the ones I’ve bought fifteen years later. Literally nothing had changed about the style or quality. That seems to be what L.L. Bean is so good at doing — just look at their Bean Boots.
Second, they’re practically indestructible. Even when they show wear, they still look chic. Dare I say they even get more classic with frayed edges and handles? It doesn’t look like you’re carrying something that’s falling apart. You’re carrying something that has seen some things. It has memories. It’s been to a Fourth of July parade, a beach day that stretched long past golden hour, that first spring picnic.
Lastly, they’re accessible. The price point is incredibly and that makes them available to everyone. You buy them because of their utility, not because they’re a status symbol. Yet they have just enough style to show that you cared more than just caring a plain canvas tote. They’re the ultimate IYKYK.
And, hey, these days they’re even ironic in addition to iconic.