There's nothing like packing a postage-stamp-size clutch to really make you "look at your life, look at your choices," in the immortal words of Sassy Gay Friend. Do I really need to bring my health insurance card? Lipstick? I guess I could just hold my phone all night, because I'd do that anyway.
But for the girl who's more Boy Scout, there's a new, intriguing option for evening baggage, and not the kind that stars you blubbering into your nachos at 4 a.m. (We've all been there.) That is, for fall, alongside rifted-upon replicas of archival pieces, Balenciaga sent out tote bags in fuchsia taffeta and feathers to match the flouncy dresses. Tote bags! Not unlike the floppy ones you bring to the grocery store the two times a year when you remember the discount.
Of course, they're a bit unwieldy if you're tottering around on heels or looking for hooks underneath the bar, but imagine the payoff: an extremely put-together look, which is where fashion is mercifully heading after seasons of ripped denim; not having to Sophie's Choice your belongings; and more than enough space for a midnight snack (economical), water (responsible), and a change of clothes, should the opportunity for an overnight stay arise (::schoolchildren titter::).
To partake in the trend, crafty types can sew their own, while those who can't thread a needle might look for solid colors. (The easier to match your dress, though an irreverent slogan could be cheeky.) But whatever you do, make sure to bring some singles—you'll need to tip the coat-check girl. (Wouldn't want to take anyone out on the dance floor.)