Início Tech Freja New York Mini Chrystie Handbag, Tested & Reviewed

Freja New York Mini Chrystie Handbag, Tested & Reviewed


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You don’t have to be on board with the stealth wealth movement to appreciate a gorgeously-constructed, goes-with-everything handbag — particularly one that has a four-figure look but rings in at under $300. After spotting Freja New York handbags tucked on the shoulders of tastemakers like Katie Holmes and Hailey Bieber, I decided to road test one of the brand’s buzziest styles: Freja’s Mini Chrystie Handbag, which is newly available in a soft sage color for summer.

For those unfamiliar with the brand, here’s a quick primer: Freja New York launched in 2020 with 300 units of just one handbag, the Linnea Tote, which brand founder Jenny Lei designed to fill a void she saw when looking for a stylish, spacious laptop bag to carry to an interview. Slowly and steadily, Freja expanded its offering of chic, minimalist, and vegan leather accessories to include bucket bags and sculptural shoulder bags, eventually taking the brand from under-the-radar status to celebrity-approved. Just this spring, Freja handbags have been seen on tastemakers like Hailey Bieber, Katie Holmes, Alix Earle, and Matilda Djerf. Best of all: Most Freja bags are under the $300 price point.

Freja’s Mini Chrystie Handbag arrives in an East-West silhouette, a shape calls to mind two Y2K designer handbag heartthrobs: Chanel’s Chocolate Bar bag and Fendi’s Baguette bag. Like many fashions from the 1990s and early 2000s, these elongated handbags are back: East-West shapes were seen on Dior, Hermès, Miu Miu, and Bottega Veneta’s fall 2024 runways. The Mini Chrystie is a low-risk way to test drive the trend, given its durable construction, elevated details, and $268 price point.

I’ve been carrying Freja New York’s Mini Chrystie bag for the past two months — it’s accompanied me on trips to destination weddings and everyday outings in New York City — read on for my testing review.

Freja New York Mini Chrystie Handbag Details

  • Price: $268
  • Colorways: Oat, Espresso, Black, and newly available in Pistachio
  • Weight: 0.8 pounds
  • Dimensions:
    • Length: 11 inches
    • Height: 4.5 inches
    • Width: 3.6 inches
  • Materials: Vegan ultrafiber leather, lined in vegan merlot ultrafiber
  • Pros:
    • Material is scratch-resistant and easy to wipe clean with a damp wash cloth
    • Spacious interior that can hold an iPhone Max, a bifold wallet, sunglasses, and multiple lipsticks or lip glosses
    • Straps are long enough to sit comfortably on the shoulder (even with a chunky knit or blazer on)
  • Cons:
    • Bottom of the bag slightly warps if packed tightly in a suitcase or stored without stuffing
  • Where to buy: Freja New York

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Freja New York Mini Chrystie Handbag, Tested & Reviewed

Freja New York Mini Chrystie Bag

Price upon publish date of this article: $268

Freja Mini Chrystie Handbag Review – Editor Testing Notes

When I laid eyes on Freja’s Mini Chrystie Handbag, I couldn’t help but wonder about the practicality of the shape — yes, those long straps are certainly great for situating the bag on my shoulder, but the capacity was in question. Because of their squat proportions, East-West bags don’t scream “I’m spacious,” but after taking the bag home, I’ve come to realize that this affordable handbag fits more than you’d expect. For a recent destination wedding, I was able to stow my trifold wallet, a pair of sunglasses, my iPhone max, and small bits and bobs like lip gloss and fashion tape inside. For those who want to toss more in the Mini Chrystie — say, a phone charger and headphones — ditch your wallet and place your essential credit cards and IDs in the handbag’s inner card slots (there are two; each is stitched snugly against the bag’s lining to prevent your cards from sliding out). Two magnetic closures on the flaps of the bag prevent anything you store inside from spilling out when you slip it on and go.

As for the material, this is some of the most luxurious vegan leather I’ve touched. Like all Freja New York handbags, the Mini Chrystie bag is done in vegan ultrafiber leather, a patented material that’s Oeko-Tex certified and sourced from recycled plastics. It has a barely-there pebbled finish that masks any scratches or stains (however, it’s worth noting that these imperfections disappear when I take a damp washcloth to the surface of the bag). The Mini Chrystie is lined in a similar material with a suede finish — my Oat colorway features a burgundy lining that’s rich and soft to the touch.

WWD Shop editor Claire Sullivan tests Freja New York’s Mini Chrystie Handbag. Captured with the Leica Q3 camera.

Any handbag lover knows that a shoulder bag is only practical if it feels comfortable on your body, and that’s where the Mini Chrystie delivers. The length of the two straps are just right for sitting squarely on my shoulders without feeling like the body of the bag is in my armpit. Even when I slide it on over a chunky sweater or a blazer, the bag falls at a flattering point near my mid-waist.

Because it has the capacity of a spacious clutch and a minimal, understated design that looks luxurious, I’ve been able to style my Mini Chrystie with everything from wedding guest dresses to workout gear. The bag’s unique, elongated shape makes a statement, but unlike other eye-catching bags I own, it’s the shape and construction, rather than the color, that draws attention and compliments — I suppose that’s the appeal of the quiet luxury trend after all.

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Freja New York Mini Chrystie Handbag, Tested & Reviewed

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Before you go, check out our list of the best affordable handbag brands:

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Meet the Author

Claire Sullivan is the Senior Beauty and Lifestyle Commerce Editor for Footwear News and WWD, where she writes and edits beauty, fashion and lifestyle stories. She has over six years of experience as a writer and editor for national media outlets including Martha Stewart Living, Martha Stewart Weddings, InStyle, and Byrdie. She keeps her finger on the pulse of all things related to beauty and wellness, as well as the latest shopping trends and clothing brands like Freja New York.



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