What’s in My Handbag?

I know this post (day 13 of the June blogging challenge) is supposed to be about the contents of my purse. Well, that’s boring. My handbag contains all the normal stuff: wallet with cards and ID, a few coins, possibly as much as $7 cash (but I doubt that), a lip balm, a lipstick, an ink pen, a sharpie, a small hairbrush, reading glasses, sun glasses, a tiny tin of Advil and Benadryl, keys, my phone, and sometimes my iPad.

What I’d like to focus on in this post is the purse itself, because I am supremely picky about my handbags. A few years ago my best friend and I were on a hunt for new bags, and as we were in the department store studying our options, discussing must-haves and preferences, a woman came around the end of our aisle with a huge smile spread across her face.

We smiled back, and she said, “You ladies should have a comedy show and travel the country with it.”

We are hilarious when we shop together, but we are also completely serious. We know what we want. We search until we find it. We bask in the glow of our victory. No fear. No crying in shopping. Just ask our children; they know the rules.

So when I say that I’m picky about handbags, please understand that I don’t care how supple the leather, how vibrant the color, or what label may or may not be on the bag. If it doesn’t have certain features, it doesn’t get a second look.

It MUST have a strap that I can put on my shoulder with one hand in one movement. This sounds simple, but it’s not. I want to be able to hold the strap/ handle at its apex, and in one swift action bend my arm and drop it securely onto my shoulder. If the drop between the strap and the bag isn’t quite long enough, it bumps my elbow, and goes back on the rack.

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It MUST have enough room to carry all of the above items, with the exception of the iPad. If it can’t hold more than a lipstick and a paperclip, it goes back on the rack.

It MUST have a zipper pocket on the inside. This is for the lip balm, my keys, and my pill box. When I have a migraine, chapped lips, or need my keys quickly, I don’t want to have to dump my bag to find them.

I LIKE to have an outside pocket that I can access without removing my purse from my shoulder. This is not an absolute, but if it has one for my phone and for my sunglasses, I’m a happy girl.

My last basic rule is that my purse must be well made, but can’t cost more than what I carry inside it. I don’t want to worry about someone stealing a $450 purse to get a $3 lipstick and $14 in cash.

That’s it. Those are my picky requirements. It’s not a long list; it shouldn’t take me hours and hours to find a good bag. Purse makers, if you’re reading this… get to it!

What are your requirements for a good purse?

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