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My name is Possum, and I have a bag problem.

I am 33 and I have spent about 20 years looking for the perfect purse. I've tried them all. Expensive ones. Cheap ones. Messenger. Shoulder. Backpack. Handheld. Big. Small. Tote. Compartments. No compartments. Black. Colorful. Plain. Ornate. Even some custom made ones have turned around to bite me in the ass. I have yet to find what I want.

My ideal bag should have one or two outside pockets, a bit of stashing room but not huge or bulky. Preferably not leather. Not a bunch of hanging crap, fringe or dangling junk. No useless buckles. Must be lightweight. Must be durable. Not trendy, no dumbass logos all over it. Must have a shoulder strap of some kind. Must be a bit unusual, something not everyone on earth would have. Is this too much to ask?

Here's what I haul on a daily basis:
Cell phone (black RAZR named Poe)
iPod (named iNgrid)
Moleskine daily planner, size of a book
Small can of cop-grade pepper spray, aka Krypto
Albuterol (asthma rescue inhaler)
Digital Camera
Lip balm, concealer, small hairbrush
.. and sometimes whatever junk I run across.

What bag do you carry?


Thank you. Please drive through.
Oh, and forgot to ask... if you don't carry a purse, what do you carry? Is there an alternative out there besides pockets? I'm not a fan of pocket bulges, and I have a little too much stuff to carry to get away with pockets only.
I'm thinking of picking up one of these:

I have many purses in many different styles. Although, I do use my pockets when I only need my id, debit card, & lipbalm.
I have a lloyd baker bag that holds all my crap; admittedly it is leather, but it's the best bag I own. They don't sell it any more, but it looks similar to this. If I'm going to uni though, I favour a large canvas tote, because there is no handbag on earth that can hold an A4 file and a labcoat.

My father, and/or my brother buy me a handbag every birthday and/or christmas. I have lots of handbags.
I was in the same boat as you, possum, with basically the same needs as you, until last Christmas when I found my current purse. It's made by Fossil, and it's called "Fairfax". I found an ebay auction with it, but it's a slightly different model. My version is green and has a flap over the top, with a magnetic "button". The one in the picture has 2 pockets in front and a zipper on top.

Anyway, when you lift up the flap on mine, there's a small pocket (it's sort of a flat pocket) and I keep receipts, coupons other scraps of paper in it. Then there's a bigger pocket that I keep my sunglasses and hairbrush in. Then there's the main part of the purse. It has 2 open "pouches", which I keep my iPod and cell phone in, and a small zipper pocket that I keep my lig gloss, breath mints, Excedrin- stuff I use regularly. Then, as an added bonus, there's a large zipper pocket on the back that's almost hidden and it's as big as the length and width of the purse. I keep my less-used cosmetics and a few hair things in there. There's also 2 buttoned pockets on the ends, but I don't really use those.

This purse has been wonderful- it's durable canvas-y material, so I can wash it. The faux button on the outside of the flap (like the ones the eBay purse has on the two pockets) fell off, but I saved it and it can easily be sewn back on.

For some reason this purse is not listed on their website, but that doesn't necessarily mean they don't carry it any more- it wasn't up there when I got mine, either. It wasn't on eBay, either, so I think it was really new in November/December and maybe they're only selling it in stores.

Anyway, I don't know if you're near a Fossil store, but this purse is worth driving 100 miles for! Otherwise, I can poke around on eBay for you- maybe there's one listed that the seller didn't put "Fairfax" in the title so it didn't come up.

ETA: Oh, and it was about $60.
The purse I've been using for a year is just a regtangular pouch made from pretty frabric with a twine strap. I got it from a headshop. I like that it's big enough to fit more than just my tiny cellphone and wallet (unlike my other purses which are all tiny), but it's like a bottomless pit sometimes. There are no pockets, so when my cellphone rings I sometimes end up dumping out the whole thing in frustration. And the bag spins when I walk, so the straps gets all twisted and it's really annoying.

I've found that small zipper pouches to hold my makeup, jewelry, vitamins, etc. help with the "bottomless pit" thing though.

When I'm going someplace where I need to bring my nalgene bottle and an extra shirt or something, I use my corduroy backpack. It zips open on the side that rests against my back, it has a front pocket, and the straps zip together so you can wear it like a regular backpack or do that one-strap diagonal thing.
i recently got a marc jacobs bag on clearence that is really great. the strap is long enough to wear across the body or over the shoulder. its a cream color that matches everything. it has a double flap that closes with a magnetic button, a zipper pocket across the front for storage, the inside is divide into two seperate areas with zippers. i can fit my camera and accesories in the back of it and all my other stuff in the front area. its big but not huge or akward. i really love it. and it was not that expesive, about $120, but for a leather marc bag it is really a great price.
LadyLibrary (i love that name, being a librarian and all)... can you post a pic or a link to a pic? Thanks :-)
Polly, I'm currently carrying exactly the same bag as you are, only the striped version! I absolutely adore it, except when you load it down, the strap flips in so the metal adjuster is against your shoulder. I'm really picky about that stuff, but it's my one and only complaint about this bag. I got it on clearance for $30, and am so happy I snagged the last one in the store. Oh, and when the strap is too short, it falls off my shoulder, so I keep it long and wear it across my chest if I'm doing serious walking and it needs to stay put for awhile.

I've got a problem with collecting handbags - expensive ones. I've bought every single one of them on clearance, though, except for one. I've got a black Fendi one that's shaped like a kidney that's good for going out or if I'm not carrying a whole lot. The best thing is the texture with the raised logo letters, but since it's black on black, it's not garishly flashing symbols or anything. I also get a lot of compliments on my fuscia/plum Kate Spade doctor's bag. It's leather, which I usually don't go for, but it's nice and open on the inside and perfect for smuggling food into movie theaters. The only problem is that since there's so much space, it gets heavy fast.

I also make cigar box handbags that are decoupaged with vintagey images and such, with other embellishments. I try to carry those whenever possible as free advertising for myself. The only problem is that since the sides don't expand, you've got to plan what you put in them so they'll close. They make great conversation pieces, though.

I'm currently looking for a really cute blue or yellow bag. I've got every other color under the sun except those two.

I'm almost tempted to just use a regular tote bag. I dunno.

I have a Kate Spade "Sam" style bag in a pretty cranberry color that was a b-day present. It's so pretty, but kind of annoying to carry under yr shoulder, since the boxiness makes it stick out.
Bright orange Jack Spade messenger bag. Carries my laptop, and all sundry attachments. Water-resistant, sturdy, and bright freakin' orange. I love my bag.
I'm looking into this bag... Fossil flap. I'll have to see if it goes across the body.

I think maybe I'm just not a purse girl, but I also hate utilitarian messenger bags.
i'm not much of a purse person, either. i also don't like carrying a backpack, even though i'm in grad school. it makes me feel like i'm in high school. i have an armyish looking messenger bag that i got at target a couple of years ago that i really like, but it's not very sleek or stylish for going out to dinner or a concert or what have you. i also have a green velvety upholstery material flap bag that i got at camden market in london about 5 years ago, that is thinner and sleeker than a messenger bag, but being green, it doesn't always go with every outfit.

i'm seriously considering getting a bag from queenbee bags. i'm thinking of either this one or this one. i wish they were a little less expensive, because i'm very short on cash right now, but they are so cute and seem just the right size. same concept as a messenger bag, but smaller for everyday/going out on the town needs, when i don't need to haul around textbooks.
I love 9 West bags and for years have bought them, usually on sale, from my local department store (Hecht's). I am all about the small bag, too. Other women often notice my little purses and say, "I would love to carry a small purse but it wouldn't fit all I need." I used to hate purses until I realized I didn't need all the crap I carried around everyday and then I found small purses I liked that were inexpensive, almost all were 9 West, and I went crazy!

I have all kinds of little purses now and they are well-designed and last a long time. I like rather plain though "classic" bags that go with most anything, black or beige/tan, sometimes something a little crazy liked a stripped blue and white that matches one particular summer dress that I love. The 9 West bags haven't been so great the last few seasons, but the little ones I got about 5 years ago seemed small but held so much. I'm talking wallet, small camera, small hairbrush, notebook, pen, cell phone, sunglasses...! I couldn't believe all that stuff and more would go inside. I have hung on to almost all of them and switch around a lot. My favorite was a backpack style 9 West purse that could go over the shoulder or the single strap could upzip to make a backpack. It has front and back pockets and although it's a bit faded, I still use it as my airplane purse when I travel because it holds everything and the pockets are great for holding your tickets and a small book.

Designers: keep making small but roomy purses! And hooray for outside pockets.
I have a Dooney & Burke that I bought over 4 years ago and it's in their black leather with tan leather accents coloring. It goes with everything and is absolutely perfect. It easily holds my wallet, ipod, cell phone, d&b cosmetic bag, and when I had a blackberry it fit too. It's a midsized bag I suppose - not small small but not large either. *shrug* I love it, I got it at Nordstroms and it was made for them by D&B since I never saw it anywhere else.

I also have a gorgeous red briefbag that I carry to work. I take my stuff out of my purse and put it in this bag and I carry it to work. I constantly get compliments on it.

I'm eyeballing the Hermes Kelly bag though ..
Hmmm altargrrl.... those truckette bags are pretty sweet. I recall seeing a girl with a tote bag from Queenbee and it was really pretty.

I love carrying a backpack to work-- room for any papers and my lunch! I lugged one all through grad school too. But I don't like a backpack purse because I'm always having to reach around for keys, wallet, etc. Pain in the butt.

I wish I could downsize, but the minute I stop carrying something is the minute I will need it. Never fails.

I always have to have my wallet, asthma inhaler, phone, pens, notebook, pads/pons. It's not so much that I lug a lot around; I like having stashing room for things I come across like take-out menus and newspapers. :-)
The Hermes Kelly bag... gah. It's gorgeous. But $5000. I don't think I could even charge that without passing out, even if I did have the means.

Besides, I work in a school library... all the klepto kids would steal it within minutes and use it as a bookbag or flush it down a toilet.
I have one rule about purses, it must be large enough for me to discretely carry a bottle of champagne.

My favorite vintage purse that I own is called pursezilla. Anyone else name their purses?
Just got a great Brighton purse that has little comparments for my cell phone, wallet, and a bunch of little pockets for stuff. I love it. They call it an organizer purse. I had a Coach backpack purse for years, but it was getting so heavy...
ooooh i love those queenbee bags. i bought one of the "trucker" bags about 2 years ago and absolutely love it. it's pretty tough and fits a whole lot of stuff in it. it's perfect for travelling, zipping around on my bike, carting my laptop around, and plenty of room for an extra sweater, bottle of wine, or whatever.

i love flat bags too (; they're made of recycled bicycle tires and vintage vinyl.
hey, those bags are from right here in my town. i see them Everywhere, they're really cool.
sorry- editing...
Halleluliah! It's a revival!

I'm driving myself absolutely crazy trying to find a new bag. I have searched about a million sites trying to find what I'm looking for, to no avail.

I've been carrying this bag (the dark brown one) for about 6 months now. It's taken quite a beating and starting to get a little shabby.

I'm looking for something smaller than that one-small enough so that I don't carry around needless crap which makes it too heavy, but big enough to fit the basic stuff. I also want it to be a backpack, because my right shoulder is messed up, and now my left shoulder is starting to hurt too from always carrying it on that side. I know that's because I carry too much stuff, but that's because the large size encourages me to fill it up. I pride myself on being a pretty rational person, but for some reason I just cannot minimize the amount of things I carry, if I can fit it in the bag. So I hope if I have a smaller one, I will have no choice but to carry less.

So..basically I'm looking for a mini backpack, but I am so extremely picky about..everything. The color, the material, the details on it. There really are a lot of mini backpacks, but not quite what I am looking for. I know, I'm making this so much harder by being so picky, but I generally use the same bag daily for a long time-like at least a year, usually longer, and so I want something that I will still like a year from now, and meets my needs. This current one is just starting to cause me problems. And I'm sick to death of the color brown.

I would love something handmade, or at least looks like it. I've looked through a lot of crafty-bag websites, but not many of them make backpacks for some reason. I've looked on Ebay, Amazon, Overstock, Ebags, Zappos, and many other random sites that sell bags. All of the major sites generally only sell boring, trendy bags. Ebay is kind of a hit or miss-I'll find something that is sort of what I am looking for, but not quite, and at this point, it's the most promising lead, because people can sell whatever they want, I'm hoping someone will have what I'm looking for.

To be honest-and to make things harder, I can't really put together in my own mind what I want it to look like. I have lots of ideas, but nothing solid. Just the small backpack so far. But most of what I've found is too boring and/or too trendy. I want it to have structure, so things inside stay somewhat in the same spot, but I'm not sure about leather. Leather-like would be okay. No sporty-nylon either.

I have to say though, that I love Matt & Nat bags-they are stylish and interesting, but not too boring and trendy, and they are made of PVC, which feels and looks a lot like leather but is not. Some of them are a little pricey, but they are well made. And the names of their bags are usually amusing and film-related. They just don't make any backpacks sad.gif

Oh, and I don't want to spend more than $75 or so-and that's if I REALLY like it.

God I know I am my own pain in my ass. And I know, I feel so materialistic, but I really don't go through that many bags. I think I've had 4 in the last 6 years, and 3 of those were handmade. My current one was the first one I've ever bought. But I'm afraid I am not talented enough to make what I'm looking for this time.

Anyone know where I can maybe find what I'm looking for? I would love any suggestions. I can't guarantee I will find it there, but anything will help. Thanks for reading this!
Whoa! I found it!

j/k... :P
Seriously though..I'm LOSING my MIND.
still searching : (
How would one go about finding a handbag cleaner? My dry cleaners say they don't do handbags.

It's a pink nylon Kate Spade sam. I cleaned it with warm water and woolite, per the directions on their webpage, but it needs a little more help.

Still on the eternal quest for the perfect bag.
LMP mentioned that she wanted to have a purse thread. I found this one buried from awhile ago.

I love to purse window-shop. I can't afford the really nice stuff (no Kate Spade for me. Yet.) but I am really god at finding stuff in the thrift store.

My favorite thrift store finds include:

- a great Liz Claiborne black, alligator skin laptop bag that I wish I had more reason for
- a brown, crafty looking shoulder bag with some light embroidery
- a red clutch that seems to hold about the same amount of stuff that Mary Poppin's bag held
- a canary yellow leather summer purse
- a robin's egg blue summer purse

I rotate my purses by season. Right now I mostly carry a wicker bag. The winter bag is a black one that I swear is made of teddybear fur. I like my purses to have a sense of humor.

Yesterday I bought a brown leather shoulder bag that will be great for this fall but I need a new big bag for fall. Going to back to school and I don't want to go the backpack route. I just need something big.
kittenb - i too got a new purse yesterday. First,

I bought a Dooney & Bourke two years ago. It was my first "expensive" purse. I was very proud because I saved a long time for it. It was a simple barrel bag. It was brown and tan. I liked it because it was sophisticated on the outside and fuck me red on the inside. Kinda like me. biggrin.gif

Before that I had bought a Prada knock off at a purse party. It's the back pack kinda bag. It's another one of my favorites.

I bought a Coach knock off last summer but I don't really care for it. Not because it's a knock off but because I don't really care for coach in general.

I bought this brown purse from Kohls. It was a favorite for a while.

So, I've been dying to get something new and fancy again. When Mr. Pugs and I went on vacation he was going to buy me a Coach. We drove almost 45 mintues from Ocean City, Maryland to Rehobeth Beach, Delaware to the Coach outlet. It was crowded, picked over and I hated everything I saw. The prices were outragious for the ugly shit they had. So I went home empty handed and dissapointed.

Yesterday, we went to the mall and I, again, walked through the Coach store they had. I didn't like much of anything. I really wanted black or brown leather this year. I didn't want a lot of metal (good luck right?). I found one that was okay. I would have bought it out of frustration. I walked out and decided to try Macy's. I wasn't impressed there either. I was about to call it a day and leave when I spotted these two black purses hanging on a rack in the Dooney & Bourke section. I walked over. They were solid black SOFT leather. It had this one big, giant clasp on the front and NO OTHER METAL!! The bag at Coach wasn't bad but the inside and outside were both black and it was boring. The inside of this D&B was PINK!!! PINK!! So...1) black leather 2) one big chunky clasp 3) sexy pink interior 4) in my price range. It was $275 (under $300). Well I was thrilled. I went to go tell Mr. Pugs I found my bag but was too excited to track him down in the mall so I just called him on my cell phone to tell him. I assured him I loved it and that it was THE purse for the next year or two. He said fine and I skipped back to the store to buy it.

The lady behind the counter could just tell how excited I was. It's lovely. I love it. Everyone I've shown it to says it's gorgous. MY MOM EVEN LOVED IT!! That's saying something. I'm so happy with it. It's perfect with everything. Everytime I open it and see that pink I just smile. Maybe I'll get my sister to take some pictures of it with her digital camera and I'll post them on here. Seriously, I wanted to hold it while I slept last night. Purses make me girly!!

Here it is the Annalisa Leather Handbag
I am having vicious purse lust for that Annalisa.
I seriously just catwalked with it the whole time I was at lunch in the cafeteria with the other interns. They were all laughing at me.
LMP - i just sold my d&b purse and matching wallet on ebay! it was very nice but i never used it. then for mothers day my honey bunny hubby brought me a fab italian leather purse from rome. (he gave a talk there) i looked for a pic on line but can't find one.

kitten - some of my best purses are thrift store cheapo ones. i have a great sequined clutch that every one always comments on that i got for free at a thrift store when i was buying some other stuff and the guy threw it in for free. it has black silver and pinkish bronze sequins in a v shape with satine interior. really a gorgeous clutch.
I just got a couple new Coach purses at the outlet store a few weeks back. They were having a massive sale and had a lot of good stuff in stock. One of them is a very pale blue supple leather bag with brushed silver clasp. The strap is kinda funky with belted crap and lots of holes (which I was actually happy about because I can carry this one on my shoulder instead of in my hand. I'd been looking for a blue purse for years and years. My other is a patchwork bag that expands. There's no hardware on it whatsoever. It's got happy colors and I have shoes to match. I got them both for under $250 total.

My Prada is in the shop now. sad.gif It's been there for over 8 weeks, and I'm getting sick of this. Word to the wise: don't buy Prada unless you want to have to pay for repairs. I was under the impression that it was under guarantee, but nope. The zipper broke, so I sent it in to Neiman Marcus (I get all my good bags there on their semi-annual sale) to repair it, and Prada is charging me $75 to replace the lousy zipper, of all the dumb things. Grrr!

I've got quite a few designer bags, but they're getting worn out. The Prada broke. My Kate Spade is still cute, but isn't as sharp as it used to be (it's a doctor's bag style that's square shaped and zips on the top over the middle. The creases don't hold it in as much of a square shape anymore because I use it so much). My black Fendi has black car touch-up paint on it (not noticeable to anyone but me, but still...). My D&B is still looking good, though, but I don't use it too much. It's pink leather with tan accents. I kind of beat my bags to hell.
This is my current baby. I lurve her.

Never been much of one for D&B or Coach. The boyfriend bought me a limited edition giant Coach hobo a few years ago, but I never carry it.
*gasp sputter sigh* AP i heart that bag!
You wouldn't believe the shit I can fit into that thing! It's a good sized tote, I packed a week's worth of clothes & junk in it & used it on a trip. It's dope-a-rope! Plus, it's extremely well made & I can carry it forever, unlike a lot of the more expensive trendoid bags. Strange women stop me all the time to ask about it.
I have a huge collection of purses, mostly vintage clutches. but my most recent addition is a whiting and davis white mesh purse with a large silver clasp and silver chain. it still has the old Marshall Field's sticker on the inside. It is equisite.

AP I love the fluevog bag! I just signed the paperwork for my completion of my master's degree and all I can think about is buying another clutch from this site

AP, I want your bag soooo bad! Sadly I can't afford something like that.

I'm just looking for a really big bag that I can fit my notebook in. I hate carrying my school bag and purse separately.
found this at salvation army:

It's a little beat up but I love it. I don't buy anything leather unless it's secondhand, so yeah.
nice work hellotampon!!

I love big bags. I do have rules though, if it is a big purse it should be large enough to discretely carry a bottle of champagne. I have a big ass black patent leather vintage purse with gold buckles I call, pursezilla. it's huge and yes it can fit a bottle of champagne.
I'm not a big designer bag buyer, mostly because I can't afford them, but I also don't like the way a lot of them are designed. I'm not a big fan of designer logos all over things, so the current crop of YSL, Coach and Gucci bags don't appeal to me. I'm generally an inexpensive and rather trendy purse buyer and prefer something with a little vintage style. I recently found a very cute faux grey snakeskin bag at Ross that makes me quite happy. It's not quite a bucket bag. I suppose you could call it a tote, but it's not quite as big as most totes either. It's kind of gathered at the top, with two straps, and the perfect amount of room inside. Plus, I love the grey snakeskin.

That said, though, I do like some of the older Coach bag designs. Years ago, I went to a Coach outlet sale and found a black suede satchel that's absolutely gorgeous. I haven't carried it in years, but I've kept it in storage because I know it will come in handy again someday.
Thirtiesgirl, I have the grey snakeskin purse you're talking about. I can't believe it's at Ross now, I bought mine at Pennys <.>
QUOTE(LustfullyPink @ Jul 29 2008, 12:41 PM) *
Thirtiesgirl, I have the grey snakeskin purse you're talking about. I can't believe it's at Ross now, I bought mine at Pennys <.>

I just saw some similar faux grey snakeskin purses at Target the other day. Not quite the same model, but made of exactly the same material. I really like it because it goes with so much in my wardrobe ~ black, brown, grey, green, blue, burgundy, etc.

The other day, my shopaholic tendencies got the better of me and I stopped in at Payless Shoes (which I totally should *not* have done)... anyway, I ended up buying this very cute dark brown purse, kind of a tote, but not as large as standard totes.

I know it looks black in the pic, but it's a dark, bittersweet chocolate brown, which I love. (They also have it in tomato red.) My justification is that I've needed a brown purse for a while. I have a brown medical bag style purse, but it's never hung right on me and the straps keep slipping, so I don't use it often. I ended up giving that one to Goodwill after I bought this bag. So, see - something good did come of it!
My soon to be new weekender.

The shoes I want to go with it.

Yes, I do want to look as confusing as humanly possible.
My new travel duffel is a work of art and beauty: Vera Bradley Pink Elephants. It will debut this weekend on our trip to Amherst.
Alas, I found through that link that the only Vera Bradley print that I like is being discontinued. *sob*
And that I want this in said print (Capri Blue) badly.
Yesterday I met a woman who had one of these.

I covet it. I want it. I may get it.
Can any of you recommend an everyday knock-around-town type of bag that's NOT a messenger bag? I'm looking for one to wear across the body in all sorts of weather, something to hold the usual purse-y stuff and a paperback book and 5x8 notebook, but not large enough to hold a computer. Ideas? I'm not looking for a ginormous bag. I am not crazy about Queen Bee bags, but don't really know what I'm looking for.
This is the first new purse I have bought in like three years so excited! It is supposed to arrive on 12/24. can't wait

then I needed a new wallet so I got this

and then I figured I could use a new clutch so I got this

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