I ordered the Banana Republic Evan Satchel in Leopard a couple weeks back. I absolutely love the shape of the satchel and the cute tassel FOB that is attached. The leopard print version was more than 100 dollars off the price of the regular version of the same bag and I waited until I had an additional 40% promo, so in the end it was a real steal. (Seriously, BR owes most of their Quebec sales to me)
This purchase is really against type. I'm not a black leather, gold and animal print kind of gal; I generally leave that to the ladies out there that rock a more 'sexy' appearance (smokey make up, heels, etc.). I'm more of a self proclaimed nerdy girl, my preferences lean more towards peter pan collars, argyle prints and tweed blazers. So I bought the purse thinking it would be a wardrobe experiment and I am actually finding it much easier to incorporate into my wardrobe that I first thought. For one thing, a handful of compliments from strangers and friends are making me realize it was a good pick. Second, most of my winter outerwear is dark neutral or jewel tone, which ends up working pretty well with the pattern.
There are a couple negatives that I have found with the bag, however. I was hesitant to get it because it is made out of calf hair. Over the years I have avoided buying anything made with calf hair, not so much because of a political stance or even belief based (since I use leather products) but because the feel of calf hair creeps me out. I have this unnerving need to pet it, which makes me feel sad, cuz well...you know. Chalk it up to another of my quirks; it has less to do with the bag and more to do with me. The other drawback is more functional in nature. There are no hooks located at the ends of the purse to attach the shoulder strap. If you want to use the strap you have to connect it to the handle hardware, but that puts the connection points of the strap at about 5-6 inches apart - this does not make for good balance or ease of use. It's hard to explain but you'd know what I mean the minute you try it on. I'll just use the handles instead, problem solved.