Ah, just as I thought – eliminating the gapping of the button-band has turned this garment into something I want to wear, at least with skirts and probably with reasonably roomy trousers. It does not look flattering with my jeans, but then that’s what my Helsinki jumper is for! So, at last, a photo of me wearing my Grape Fade Rimini (once cardigan, now jumper) with a smile on my face.

It being Friday and Fridays being a bit random hereabouts, I decided that today I would give you a glimpse at my own interpretation of what internet-type people call their “everyday carry” (EDC). When I initially took a photo for this post, I was quite pleased with how pared-down this had become. Then I started adding in all the things I have to put in my bag just before I go out of the door, which reminded me of the reason why I always struggle with small handbags.

It’s not bad, I’ve seen worse, at least everything’s organised. At the top left I’ve got my grey beret and multicoloured fingerless mitts, acknowledging the autumn with its increased possibility of chilly or damp extremities. Sitting on the beret is my navy pouch which corrals the proliferation of masks and hand sanitisers we’ve suddenly added to our lives. Also at the back is a zip-top pouch in nice brown leather which currently houses my make-up (lip salve, a lipstick and a nail file), tissues, and ‘first aid’ (Rennies and Nurofen), with room to add a small tube of hand cream at some point. In front of this sit my glasses case – I can’t distinguish anything clearly closer than arm’s length without specs – and my phone. Then there’s my blue multi-tool because, apparently, you can’t take the bicycle out of the girl, even when she doesn’t currently have access to one. Also, keys – don’t you love the fact my doorkey matches my mitts?

At the very bottom is my bright fuchsia Filofax Original in the A5 size. Technically speaking, this isn’t in use yet because the diary is for 2021, but I’m getting into the swing of carrying it anyway, along with my Rose Cuivre Waterman Hemisphère fountain pen which is the most pleasing match out of my current collection. If I think I’m going to need my current diary, I add that in to the mix

The final item is my ‘purse’ which is the second brown leather item. Moving into a bag large enough to carry the A5 Filofax meant my tiny purses no longer cut the mustard; I needed something big enough to easily lay my hands on in the cavernous interior of my everyday tote, but sufficiently streamlined to work well with my Cold War Map Bag. It isn’t difficult to find large purses designed for ladies, but they are enormous and chunky; not at all what I was envisaging. My dream-purse would be a man’s wallet of the type my dad used to carry and which I’d been eyeing in second-hand shops for a fair while, so when I saw this beauty on the internet I had to grab it.

Isn’t it a gorgeous? It’s not laid out for modern life. No card slots! Won’t fit in a back trouser pocket! However, it provides svelte and stylish storage for lots of odd things that I carry with me and raises my spirits when I see that inside leather. Plus, of course, it’s easy to locate in my bag when I’m standing at a till.

Personally, I’ve always loved handbags and, especially, large handbags. That’s possibly a trait inherited from my dad who not only carried a wallet the same size as the one above in his inside jacket pocket (not to mention pipe, tobacco pouch and lighter), but also took a briefcase to work. When I indulge in a bout of watching videos of the ‘what’s in my bag’ type I only really watch the ones where someone lugs an enormous tote around with them. Many years ago, I worked with a young lady who always carried a tiny shoulder bag and I could never understand how she could spend the days away from home with the minimal amount of stuff that would fit inside. My siblings (at least the girls) seem happy to just put a purse in their pocket and go, but I’m always pleased that I was the one who got the handbag fetish. And the strong back!

6 thoughts on “Proof of the pudding

  1. I can relate completely, I need a bigger bag for glasses, lunch, meds, wallet, knitting and my perfume, so a small bag has no chance. Love your multitool, I carry mine in my big bike basket

    1. That multitool is just so useful. It’s the glasses that send my bag organisation into a nosedive every single time. When I put everything in a smaller (medium-sized!) bag it all fits perfectly, then I find I haven’t got the glasses in…. Grrrr. So many times I’ve found that I’m carrying two bags because my handbag isn’t big enough that one big bag makes much more sense.

  2. As one of the siblings who has spent all her life simply popping my small purse in my pocket and being ready for the off I’ve found the current Covid situation has completely changed my look. I now have to carry a handbag, so with my gloves on and my handbag hooked over my arm I go round the supermarket bearing a strong resemblance to our own dear Queen Elizabeth on an official visit! I think you’d find my handbag very small.

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