First Impressions & How I Scored: Fendi Mini Mon Tresor Bucket Bag

"What's meant to be will always find a way."

I'm a big believer in meant to be in - in life, in love, and even in the things that end up in our possession. Today's meant to be is one of the latter, and it's the story of how this little Fendi Mon Tresor Bucket Bag came to be mine. I'll be honest, this bag wasn't a bag that was really on my radar. I really like the direction that Fendi has taken in the last few years, but I've always found their items to be a bit overpriced for the brand so I don't shop their site often because it's not a brand I'd buy at retail. Die-hard Fendi lovers, don't @ me. 

I have another blog post in the works where I'm going to share all the brands that I don't think are worth paying full-price for and how you can get these items brand new and at a discount, so we can save this conversation in full for another day. However, the short of it is that I'm a bargain hunter at heart, especially for brands that fall into this category of goods for me, so I love to shop places like T.J. Maxx, Nordstrom Rack and Saks Off 5th. I don't like to overpay beyond the true value I think something holds so I'm always on the lookout for a good deal.

When I shared this mini Fendi Mon Tresor bucket bag on Instagram, a lot of you asked me where I got this bag from and how I got it for the price I did.  If you don't already follow me on Instagram, you should ;) But jokes aside, I revealed on Instagram that I got this bag for over 80% off retail which is wild. This bag is still current and retails for $1980 + tax. I paid $399 +10% off + tax, so around $380. Yep, insert mind-blown emoji. So let's start off with the question you all have...which is where did I find such an amazing deal? And the answer is, T.J. Maxx. If you guys aren't shopping at T.J. Maxx, honestly you all are missing out. I've found so many amazing deals there over the years, but I think this one might be the best one yet.

 I first saw this bag there a couple weeks ago (not too long after they re-opened) and it was already marked down once to around $800 after tax. I was immediately drawn to the bag because I thought it was extremely cute, but I decided to pass on it even though that was already a huge savings. Most of you guys probably think I'm crazy for doing that since that's already over $1000 off retail, but like I said - it wasn't a bag that was on my radar. On top of that, I don't really need it and at the end of the day $800 is still a lot of money that I could save and put towards something else that's on my (albeit very long) wish list. Fast forward a couple weeks later, I went back with my mom and it was still the same price so I passed again. We browsed the store for a bit, and while browsing I did notice that the store associates were going around scanning items for additional markdowns. On our way to the cash register, I saw that an associate had just finished going through the glass case where they store the designer items and was about to lock it up again. My mom and I hurried over and saw that pretty much everything in the case had gotten a second markdown. I immediately reached for this Fendi bag and was shocked to see it marked below $400. They actually had two of the exact same bags, so I ended up buying both - one for me and one for my sister. Like I said in the beginning, it was one of those meant to be moments because if you think about it, had I gone to the store any earlier or later I probably would not have been there at just the right moment.

If you guys aren't familiar with shopping T.J. Maxx, they receive their inventory from a plethora of places. Essentially, brands/companies will wholesale their items off to T.J. Maxx when they are trying to clear inventory so yes - it's all legit. These particular Fendi bags were in immaculate condition and came full set - they both came with the dust bag and care card, and all of the hardware still had the protective packaging on it. The only thing you miss out on is the box and boutique experience which, for the price I paid, is negligible. 

So let's get into the specific...

As mentioned earlier, this is the Fendi Mini Mon Tresor Bucket Bag, currently $1980 + tax. It comes in a full leather version as well which is surprisingly cheaper than the canvas version, priced at $1890 + tax. There's also a bunch of other seasonal versions in PU, raffia, etc. all around the same price point.

It measures 4.7" L x 7.1" H x 3.9" D, which to answer the question everyone cares about most - yes, it does fit even the largest iPhone. I did a full IGTV about what fits in the bag, so if you're curious how much this little guy can really pack, give it a watch here. I'm 5'5" and as you can see in the earlier photos, this bucket bag hits me at the perfect spot. It has both a short handle for hand carrying or wearing it in the crook of your arm, and a longer strap option for wearing on the shoulder and cross-body. The long strap is adjustable (I currently have it on the middle hole) so it can still work on anyone taller or shorter. I do think if you are around 5'1" or shorter it might be a tiny bit long even on the shortest setting but all the straps are detachable so you can always clip on a shorter strap of your choosing. I personally think this bag would be absolutely adorable with one of the thicker, shorter straps from Fendi!

I've had the chance to wear this bag out and I have to say, the craftsmanship and quality of Fendi is fantastic. I've always coupled Fendi more with the likes of Saint Laurent and Gucci, which is why I feel like their pricing is a little high since Saint Laurent and Gucci are on the more "affordable" end of luxury. But after owning this bag, which is my first Fendi piece, I will admit that I find their products to be a little more well-made than the aforementioned brands. I still don't foresee myself paying full price for Fendi, especially not for their items that are over $4k, but I do appreciate the small design details that have been put into this bag and it does feel like a piece that will last. 

I do have two small cons that I want to point out for this bag. The first is that I find it hard to tighten the drawstring so it does leave this bag pretty much being an open hole. I'm hoping over time the leather will soften up a bit, but for the time being I didn't want to pull too hard on the drawstrings in fear of stretching out or damaging the leather. For wearing around the suburbs to shop and run errands, it's not a huge problem because I don't think pickpocketing runs rampant in my neck of the woods, but it's definitely something to consider if you're a city-dweller. The second con is that the fabric will attract lint. I didn't notice it as much during wearing as I did taking photos. I set the bag on my comforter and it immediately had lint stuck to it. I think this will probably be a much bigger issue in the fall/winter with sweaters and whatnot since those fabrics shed a lot more than summer clothing items. I know it won't bother me that much at the end of the day because I can just lint roll it off, but it's also because I paid less than $400 for this bag so...beggars can't be choosers. However, if I bought this bag full-price I think I would be a little annoyed if the canvas was constantly covered in fuzz that had to be cleaned off. Like I said, these are both small cons and I don't think they make or break this bag.

I love this photo...look at that symmetry! This is also one of the design details that I was talking about. I love that they inserted a subtle "F" logo in one of the circular pieces of hardware here and they didn't overdo it by having it on both. This also makes the non-logo'd piece of hardware functional if you wanted to attach your strap there instead of on the bar. 

Final verdict? I might have become a Fendi fan. I still think Fendi is a brand I will likely continue to bargain hunt for, whether it's through sales, discount sellers, or the pre-loved market but I can't deny the quality and craftsmanship of their products. Would I recommend this bag? Yes. But I'm also sticking to my guns here and recommending that you try to find it at a savings because if I can get this bag for under $400 then I think it also speaks volumes to the true value of an item, and that's always something important to consider before you spend your hard-earned money.

What I'm Wearing:

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