My name is Brenda and I have a problem. (Hello Brenda). It's been 3 months since my last purse...
Yes, it is true. I am a purse-a-holic! I have an entire cupboard over my telephone desk dedicated to my addiction. And it's not just any purse. No, I am addicted to designer handbags. I blame it all on Coco Chanel. Those cute little black and white C's on a quilted background were what hooked me. I coveted that purse for many years. Oh sure, Dooney & Burke and Coach helped sate my cravings along the way, but I eventually purchased that Chanel bag. And then another, and then another. Oh and Kate Spade seemed to worm her way into my cupboard space as well. Her winter line always draws me in.
Now all you men reading this are just hearing blah, blah, blah at this point. But many of you women out there understand. A handbag reveals the person you are. I love my Mom to death, but her purse speaks volumes about her. They are cheap and functional, true to her more practical nature. I didn't get that gene. I want a purse that says "sure she's wearing a sweatshirt and jeans, but she has style and class, she appreciates the finer things in life...just look at her handbag!"
A few years back I decided to turn my addiction into a mission. The goal, to eventually own a purse by each deisgner. As a woman of limited means, I am a long way from achieving my goal. However, it is a journey that will bring me great pleasure for years to come. I'm not interested in just having another notch on the post though. There are plenty of ugly designer bags out there that could have had shelf space in my purse cupboard. But they would have said "she had money, but no taste". So my quest for purse perfection includes three major rules...1. A bag brand I do not already own, 2. It must be adorably eye-catching and distinctive, and 3. It must be at least 50% off (70-80% is even better). My best score so far was a Marc Jacobs bag in a supple cobalt blue leather, retail $2,350...I snagged it for $219 at a Nordstroms in L.A. Talk about a natural high!
Now getting to my 50-50 challenge. This summer I was shopping with Ariel at Nordstroms Rack. I can't remember what we were looking for, but the handbag section seemed to be calling me. While Nordstroms is a favorite place to purchase my handbags, the Rack usually has the ugly bags mentioned above. But this day was different. Amongst those hideous Juicy Coutures and Michael Kors bags was a charming B. Makowsky bag in a sunny yellow with tassels, zippers and pyramid studs. Oh, and leopard print lining, how fashionable is that? OK, so I like my handbags to be a little more youthful, there's nothing wrong with that. I'm not over the hill yet and I can always go to one of my Chanel bags when I want to do classic. And this bag was yellow! YELLOW! I had been looking for a yellow bag for ages! This bag was delightful, a virgin brand to my cupboard, and was 60% off. It met all of my criteria. Out came the Nordstroms card and into my life came this extravagance that left me feeling giddy with guilty pleasure.