Ateliers Auguste Monceau: The Best Celine Box Bag Alternative
If you’ve been saddened by the news of the Celine Classic Box Bag being discontinued (see here for details), don’t be, because I think I’ve already found the best alternative to the bag. Ladies and Gentlemen, meet the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody – an incredibly beautiful bag and likely the best available alternative to the Celine Box Bag on the market today.
About Ateliers Auguste
Founded in 2012 by two brothers, Laurent and Xavier, who both have a passion for design and architecture, Ateliers Auguste is a Parisian based brand that specializes in fine leather goods. Pulling inspiration from contemporary architecture, and in particular the contemporary architectural trend Less is More, Ateliers Auguste creations are characterized by structured shapes and minimalist designs which make them perfect everyday companions. Designed in France, but handmade by the highly skilled artisans in Italy and Portugal (Ateliers Auguste bags are made in Italy, but their small leather goods in Portugal), using the leathers sources from some the most prestigious tanneries in Northern Italy, Ateliers Auguste creations are perfect examples of the French leatherworking tradition and the artisanal savoir-faire.
The Ateliers Auguste Monceau Crossbody
Released in 2018 as the first bag in the Ateliers Auguste range for women, the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Crossbody remains the brand’s bestseller to this day.
Exuding timeless Parisian elegance with a highly structured rectangular silhouette and an adjustable shoulder strap, the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Crossbody was designed to be your perfect daily companion, which you could take anywhere from casual city outings to formal occasions.
The bag arrives in two sizes – The Monceau and Mini Monceau, with The Monceau measuring 19 x 24 x 7cm (7,5’’ x 9,5’’ x 2,7’’), and the Mini Monceau sporting dimensions of 16 x 20 x 5.5cm (6,3’’ x 7,5’’ x 2’’). Choose the one which fits your lifestyle best!
Having said that, both sizes of the Monceau Crossbody open up to a cotton-lined interior with one main compartment and two additional pockets that are perfect for storing smaller essentials, such as your phone or cards.
Other notable features of the bag include:
- A flap style closure with invisible magnetic button;
- Water resistant leather.
Originally introduced in an all-leather version, today the Ateliers Auguste Monceau bag comes in an array of different colors (such as black, tan, off-white, burgundy, etc.) and materials, from textured to lizard-embossed leather. Furthermore, last year, the brand designed and introduced its first ever gold clasp on a bag, and once again, the Monceau and Mini Monceau bags are the best sellers in the Gold Edition Family. Actually, talking about the Gold Edition Monceau Bag: doesn’t it remind you of something?
The Ateliers Auguste Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody vs. Celine Classic Box Bag
Think you are seeing doubles? No, you aren’t, because on the left is the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Crossbody (Gold Edition), whereas on the right is the Celine Classic Box Bag in the Medium Size.
I guess it’s really not that difficult to see for why I believe the Gold Edition Monceau Crossbody makes for a perfect Celine Box Bag alternative. Featuring a strikingly similar design to the Celine Classic Box Bag with a simple, rectangular silhouette and a bold gold buckle at the front, the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody is giving away major Celine vibes, and for just a fraction of the cost.
Specifically, if you were to go and buy the Celine Classic Box Bag now, while it’s still largely available through Celine boutiques (they are now trying to sell off the remaining stock), it would set you back $4,200, or €3,400 in the Medium and $3,700, or €3,000 in the Teen size. But, the question is, do you really want to go and spend this much money, when you can get the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Gold Edition crossbody, which looks pretty much the same, for just €465 (or US$529) in the original size and €425 (or US$484) in the Mini Monceau? By the way, the Monceau is very similar in size to the Celine Medium Box Bag, whereas the Mini Monceau is comparable to the Box Bag in Teen.
Among other things, the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Crossbody also comes with water-resistant coating. Yes, it seems like the Celine Classic Box Bag doesn’t have that. Especially if judging by the amount of reviews online where people say the leather on their bags got damaged after a contact with water.
My Honest Thoughts on The Mini Monceau Crossbody
I ended up going for the Ateliers Auguste Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody in the Mini size, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision. Not only does the bag pair well with pretty much everything in my wardrobe (I still can’t get over the fact of how fabulously it looks with my MaxMara camel coat), but it also fits everything I carry with me on the daily basis, which is my phone, cardholder, key case, sunglasses (with the case), and a lipstick. Quite impressive for a mini bag, isn’t it?
Another thing about the Ateliers Auguste Mini Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody that I really like is the length of its adjustable shoulder strap. You know how some bags sit oddly when worn crossbody? Well, this is not the case with the Mini Monceau because the bag comes with 7 length options to choose from (the strap is adjustable from 43’’ to 49’’ inches, or 109 to 125 cm), which is extremely convenient and means that the bag should look good on anyone, irrespective of their height. Just for reference, I am 5’4 (about 164cm) tall and usually use the third hole on the Mini Monceau.
I am also happy to report that I haven’t experienced any major wear and tear or any other quality issues so far. And not sure how about you, but for me this is a pretty big deal, especially after seeing so many big name brands getting called out for quality issues lately.
Not even to mention that I am beyond in love with the design of the Gold Edition Mini Monceau Bag. You can really see that the Ateliers Auguste have put a lot of effort into designing it, making it as timeless and functional as it can be.
With that being said, if you’ve been looking for a bag that is similar in style to the Celine Classic Box Bag, but doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, the Ateliers Auguste Mini Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody will definitely make for a fabulous alternative!
Disclaimer: The Ateliers Auguste Mini Monceau Gold Edition Crossbody was generously gifted to me by the brand. However, this article is not sponsored, which means that all the thoughts and opinions featured in it are genuine and my own.