I have had a long-standing addiction to designer handbags. I don't care about the name. I care about the quality. I want that leather to feel like buttah. I want the hardware to be of high quality and I want to carry it in the crook of my arm with pride. They make me happy. I may dress like a hobo in a white T-shirt, jeans and Keds for most of the year, but I always have a good purse.
I wanted to break that habit. Just to know that I could -- that I didn't need a $500 handbag to feel good about myself. Incidentally, I remember that in college, my rent was $200 and I carried a $200 handbag. Yet, I wore this ugly yellow/black bee dress to work until the entire lining was ripped out of it. It's not right.
Anyway, I'm older now. I can afford a decent handbag, but this year I got one for my birthday from my friend. Now, it's not cheap. It's Fossil. It's kind of a polished cotton. It's nautical, which I always love. And it was a gift, which makes it special. So what better way to start the non-expensive handbag scenario?
My birthday is at the beginning of September, and that's when I started carrying it. So here's what I discovered about carrying a more affordable handbag.
1. The polished cotton was easy to clean. I spilled iced mocha on it the first day and it wiped right up.
2. It's huge, and fit everything. If I didn't bring a bag into the grocery store, I didn't have to buy one, I just shoved foodstuff into the purse.
3. I wasn't worried about where I set it.
4. It was just functional. I didn't worry about showcasing it with the right outfit. I just functioned.
5. I realized my son and I could go to Disneyland for the price of a good handbag. (Maybe I can get one of those Dooney & Bourke Disney bags??)
1. I started dressing worse and caring less if I matched. (A low level depression??)
2. It was always a mess because I shoved so much into it. As a result, I felt less organized.
3. I had handbag envy. Everywhere I went, someone had a better handbag than me. This hurt me because I coveted. Usually, I'm thrilled to see a good handbag, even those better than mine because I'm happy for the people. Like, "Wow, girl, you own that Prada. Someday..."
4. I wasn't happy to see my handbag. It didn't give me a little shot of joy.
In the end, I discovered I do not need a good handbag, but it also didn't make me a better person to be without one. So, I think the experiment is a draw.