Bag handles (A list of 18 types )


1. Leather /Synthetic leather handles

types of bag handles

When you think of bag handles a leather handle is what comes to the mind first and foremost. They have unparalleled elegance. Even when ordinary cloth bags are fitted with leather handles, the look of the bag is completely changed for the better.

Glossy or matt finished, clear or coloured Vinyl handles are also used with vinyl bags/fabric. Their charm is that they are very inexpensive compared to leather handles.

2. Fabric handles

bag/purse handles

A fabric handle is the most popular type of handles when you make the bags yourself. They are easy to make and can be made matching to the bag you have.

You can make flat straps/handles with fabric made stiff with interfacing or insert plastic flexi-tubing inside to give strength. The Reinforced tubing made of  Soft PVC  is inserted inside the fabric strap.

3. Wooden handles

This could be Solid Wooden Handles or made of bamboo wood. They are great with  crocheted, knitted or woven bags.

4. Metal handles

Metal handles include oval shaped and round shaped ones used in clutches and frames around purses and also longer handles. They come in silver, copper gunmetal and gold shades and are usually attached to bags with washers and screws.

Metal chains are long chains used as cross body straps for shoulder bags.

5. Crocheted handles

A crocheted handle is used with fabric handbags and crocheted bags.Other than crochet handles, another option is to use Macrae handles made with  100% cotton rope.

6. Straw handles

purse handle types

Handles made of straw are usually attached to basket bags and beach bags made of straw. These woven bags are made with straw from Palm Leaves. Usually, they are woven as one with the bag.

7. Webbing

bag handle

3/4 inch or 1″ Heavy Cotton webbing is available in different colours for using as bag straps and handles. You can use it as it is to make bag straps and handles or cover it with fabric for a sturdy handle.

8. Rope handles

You can use twisted/braided jute or hemp rope as an easy bag handle.

9. Soft cord handles

Soft cotton cord handles are used as an alternative to the rope handles. These are commonly used for casual bags – very easy to add – no sewing or anything complicated. You can insert it through an eyelet and knot it for an instant handle for your bag.

10. Thread/yarn handles

You can manipulate or tie thread/yarn in many ways to make unique handbag straps/handles.

11. Beaded handles

These are handles made with strings made of plastic or metal or even yarn threaded with beads. The beads add a beautiful charm to the bag.

12. Ribbon handles

In a cinch, even ribbons are used for making bag handles – though not the sturdiest of material, they make cute  straps for small drawstring gift bags

13. Plastic Handles

14. Braided handles

These handles are made by braiding leather strips or fabric yarn

Handles can also be classified according to their position on bags.

15. Shoulder handles

These are handles placed on the back of backpacks with which they can be carried on the shoulder

16. Bracelet handle


A variation of the top handle – this is a handle through which you can slip your arm. The handle rests on the ankle as if it is a bracelet, making another jewelry there superfluous.

17. Top handles

18. Long and medium Straps

No need for an explanation on these. The ever-present medium and long straps on almost all the bags you carry.

Related post : How to sew bag handles – 7 ways;  A list of Materials needed to make bags; Best fabrics for making bags30 types of Bags


Updated on October 4, 2022 by Sarina Tariq


Hi, I love sewing, fabric, fashion, embroidery, doing easy DIY projects and then writing about them. Hope you have fun learning from sewguide as much as I do. If you find any mistakes here, please point it out in the comments.

4 thoughts on “Bag handles (A list of 18 types )”

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