If you read my previous handbag post you'll know that I'm a regular Mary Poppins when it comes to my purse preferences. I like to be able to carry my whole life around with me (although a floor lamp might be a little bit much), and my Kate Spade tote is THE perfect bag to do so. Not only is it gorgeously stylish, it's also the first bag that I've ever owned which is both roomy and easy to keep organized. As much as I often feel like I could never need another handbag in my life, I've come to realize that it's not the most practical thing to carry while running around. Since I pack so much in there, it can get a bit heavy, and I often tie up an arm keeping it tucked under my shoulder. So, when I saw this beautiful cross body last week during Kate Spade's surprise sale, I knew I had found the perfect lightweight cousin to my beloved tote.
Sleek and stylish, the Allen Street Neil is the perfect bag to carry while out shopping or day tripping. I chose the color Cipria, a dusty pink, which I thought was muted enough to work for any season, but also a little more fun than your standard black bag. I also especially love the buckle details on the front. While it's definitely compact, it doesn't feel overly small, and fits the essentials perfectly. Speaking of essentials, here's how I transition from my large everyday tote, to a small weekend adventuring bag.
Rather than carry around a large bulky wallet, I'll stash my license, credit card, and some cash into a small coin purse or cosmetic bag that takes up minimal space. I absolutely adore the gold polka dot details on this one! I'm also never without my phone. Luckily it fits perfectly inside the small front pocket of this handbag. I like keeping my phone in a separate compartment to minimize it being scratched by other items I'm carrying with me.
My hands often get ridiculously dry in the winter, so hand cream is a must. Love & Toast makes the most adorable tubes of hand cream that are small and portable. I love the Honey Coconut scent best, which is fitting with the birds on the packaging!
Chapped lips are another huge cold-weather annoyance, so I use lip balm religiously. Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment is one of my absolute favorites. With the holidays quickly approaching, there are tons of gift sets featuring mini versions of this balm, which are even more space friendly in a small bag.
Sometimes when you're running around it's handy to have some perfume on hand to refresh and keep yourself smelling lovely. I've been enjoying the soft, powdery notes of Lancome Tresor, which I have in a perfectly purse friendly rollerball.
And of course, if you're worried about smelling fresh, you don't want to forget about your breath! I adore these Green Tea Infused Mints from Trader Joe's. They're pressed into an adorable leaf shape, and as a tea lover, I think they taste delicious.
I'm totally happy with my new handbag purchase. Even if you're a giant tote lover like myself, it's definitely nice to have an option to downsize for the weekend. If you're relatively new to the designer bag scene, or are a long time handbag enthusiast, you should definitely check out Rue La La's new Handbag Guide! It's chock full of all kinds of helpful information - from the history of handbags, to popular styles and their uses, to how you can identify a genuine item from some of the most coveted brands. As experts on designer fashion, they definitely know their stuff! I know that I particularly found the parts about handbag materials and maintenance helpful, because I want to keep my new beauties in the best shape possible. Rue La La is an amazing site for finding high end fashion and other goodies at bargain prices, so if you're in the market for a new bag I would also recommend seeing what events they have going on.
What is your favorite bag style? Is there a designer that you're totally in love with?