100 LESSONS IN LIFE – #1oo – The Perfect Bag Is Like A Unicorn

HANGBAGS. Why can you never find the right one?

It’s a task that’s made impossible by the fact that the goal posts of bag perfection keep moving; it’s like chasing a rogue Malteaser that decided to make a run for it down Haverstock Hill. Im-fucking-possible. I feel like every time I fork out a months wages on a bag (I only buy designer bags, don’t judge a gal…) I love it for a month and then I feel like it’s lacking. Like when you buy a puppy, take it home and realise it’s about to shit EVERYWHERE and essentially ruined your entire existence. It’s cute, sure, but is that cute? So this scenario, happens every time I buy a new bag. But I’d like it to end, for good.Let’s look at the history. My first fancy bag, aged 22 (which, by modern standards is probably ancient, I recently had an intern with an actual Birkin), was a studded Marc by Marc number from Selfridges. Now frayed and slightly musty, but beautifully worn down with the aged wisdom of a well-lived and much-loved life. It was my bag du jour – until I realised that it wasn’t immortal, and fearing its impending demise, I put it back inside it’s fleecy soft storage bag and it’s remained in my cupboard since. I take it out, stroke it and pop it back inside again.

Actually, before it had even shown signs of wear, I’d become distracted.  I needed a cross body bag I decided – one that allowed me to throw drunken shapes at the Roxy (gah, so gross – if you live in London, you’ll know) or one that was steadfastly attached to my person when in the dingy murk of a heaving Crobar in London. I hit up Miu Miu at Flannels in Cardiff, and got one. It served it’s purpose – but Lord it was BIG. (Big enough for a bottle of voddy mind. #welsh) before being replaced by a YSL vessel, the size of a small polar bear. Then I flitted back to a Dior shoulder bag, an extra large Thomas Wylde clutch, another cross body Marc Jacobs, a Liberty tote – always a tote –  and countless variations in-between.

Fast forward 7 years, I still haven’t found the perfect bag. And I should mention, I guess, that all of these bags were pretty much all in the same black and gold combo – my trademark er, colours. All parodies of each other, one a little better than the other, yet none reaching the lofty heights of ‘ideal’. That elusive chalice remains firmly out of grasp for any of my bags – because perfection is subjective and subject to change – and so am I. So are we. I feel like I set them all up to fail, like a chubby pooch ambling around the agility course at Crufts.

If only I’d realised sooner, the perfect bag DOES NOT EXIST. It’s the unicorn of the fashion world. You’ve heard tales of it, but never seen one IRL. Something newer and better always comes along to take it’s place and show up it’s weaknesses. The moral of this fashwan tale? Learn to live with imperfection, and diversify into shoes.




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