It's no secret that we love Michelle Obama's style. But we recently noticed that the first lady tends to be missing one important accessory: a bag.

On Friday, Michelle made a trip to Virginia sporting her typical color-blocked outfit, those ubiquitous kitten heels and a statement necklace -- in other words, just another day in FLOTUS' wardrobe. But we were thrown by the boxy leather handbag slung over her left forearm. What's Michelle Obama doing with a purse?

Unless she's boarding Air Force One (or making the rare shopping trip), Michelle almost never carries a bag. One might assume that it's because she has nothing to carry -- having cash is probably unnecessary when you've got your own entourage and getting locked out of the White House seems unlikely.

But Michelle's lack of purse is more likely a matter of style. After all, plenty of first ladies carry handbags. While visiting America for the G-8 Conference last month, France's "first lady" Valérie Trierweiler toted her oversized Le Tanneur bag around the White House (and gifted FLOTUS one of her own); plenty of other first spouses were seen carrying purses during the visit, too.

Royals also tend to carry bags and lord knows they don't need them. Queen Elizabeth is rarely seen without her trusty black leather handbag, which she stuffs with lozenges, a compact and a fountain pen. The Duchess of Cambridge prefers tiny clutches (although they're so small they probably hold approximately one lozenge).

And yet for formal appearances, Michelle is almost always empty-handed (or empty-armed, as the case may be). Do you think her outfits are better off without them?

Below, see her bag-toting appearance from last week and more rare "bag lady" moments.

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  • June 2012

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  • April 2012

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  • September 2011

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  • September 2011

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  • September 2011

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  • May 2011

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  • March 2011

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  • March 2011

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  • July 2010

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  • April 2010

    (AFP photo)

  • January 2010

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  • October 2009

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  • May 2009

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  • July 2009

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  • April 2009

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  • Michelle Obama Spills the Beans on Barack's Laundry Habits

    Michelle Obama tells Ellen DeGeneres that Barack thinks he is tidy, but doesn't clear away his own laundry.

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