Party Clutches Are The New Party Dresses

The holidays are for indulging — at least, that’s what I told myself when I consumed a 12-pack of candy canes in one sitting. They’re for going to every party you’re invited to, eating all the sprinkle cookies, and wearing something really sparkly. And when you wear something really sparkly, you often need a clutch to match.

A super-brief history lesson: Clutches were the product of the decrease of pockets which were the result of a decrease of clothing that wasn’t as voluminous and didn’t have as much fabric. And now here we are — clutching our clutches because a bag with a strap has the potential to distract from the silhouette of a dress. Clutches are small, which means you have to be judicious about what you’re bringing with you (and save room for transporting snacks to and from parties). And when compared to pockets and other carryalls with straps, they can feel superfluous. It’s scientifically proven (somewhere) that the more you're carrying in your hands, the less dancing and fun is bound to happen. But in the name of the holidays, we're going to indulge ourselves — even if we’re left juggling a conversation and hors d’oeuvres at the same time.

With great clutches come great responsibility (to not lose your tiny treasure box of a bag and subsequently all of your belongings inside). Click through as we find practically impractical solutions to extend their functionality.

Photographed by Courtney Yates.
Minaudière, or tiny pickle and olive plate (a.k.a. serving platter for one)? You be the judge. We're just here to say that clothing pieces that serve more than one function are always a win in our book.

Shrimps dress; Radley London Upper Street Clutch, $115.50, available at Radley London.
Photographed by Courtney Yates.
Here's the aforementioned juggling act. Balancing cookies and your clutches once you're done raiding the dessert table makes for a great party trick.

Cloud Hunter Midi Dress, $239, available at Cloud Hunter; Delpozo Mini Bow Clutch, $650, available at Moda Operandi; Delpozo Metallic Bow Clutch, $650, available at Moda Operandi.
Photographed by Courtney Yates.
Fun tip: Irregularly-shaped bags might not be able to carry your phone, but they do enable you to get creative about what you put inside (especially when they're clear like this one).

Marzook bag.
Photographed by Courtney Yates.
We'll take a shrimp cocktail to-go for when you’re jumping from party-to-party and you're 94% sure your ex-boyfriend's bash is going to exclusively have PBRs.

Sandy Liang dress; L'Afshar Crystal Cut Clutch, $1,060, available at L'Afshar.
Photographed by Courtney Yates.
These little boxes were meant to carry cigarettes way back when, but times have changed and now they’re made to hold Cheetos. Yum.

Delfi Collective dress; Mark Cross bags.