Whenever we
leave the house we have the opportunity to take a
little part of it with us in our handbags…

Mine is alternatively a mess
and a little piece of
re-assuring heaven and it is only a  regular culling that allows to be the
latter more often than the

Whats in yours? Does it
represent who you are? Is it old,
battered or a bit too shabby to be
chic? Or is it an ode to practicality, where form lags so far
behind function, it’s almost gone out of  the window?

We women carry too much. Too
many memories. Too much emotion.
Too much junk. We let the  daftest things weigh us down, stuff our
bags and purses with all manner  of nonsense and live in fear of our  lives literally being stolen from
upon our tired old shoulders…

The same rules that apply to
puttering around our home apply
to puttering in miniature in our
handbags: first we have to choose a
bag that speaks to our souls.
Second we must understand that beauty
can only exist where there is  cleanliness and order. Third we
must choose items that represent who we are and what we need, to live inside and fourthly we
should where possible, make it as pretty
as possible…

Your Bag…

1. Tip it out and throw away anything obviously

2. Wipe out the inside and then take a
good look at it. Is it past it’s sell by date? Kind of ugly. Too old? Too
new? Too heavy? Do you need a new bag? Go ebay something beautiful!!

3. Do you carry make up around? Is it
manky? Do you use all of it on a daily basis? Really? I don’t mean in a life
or death, gotta see the teacher kind of way, but in a "need a touch
up" kind of way. If not, cull it to the essentials, find a tiny
vintage little purse and pop it inside. Keep an eye out for those cute
little vintage lipstick holders with the mirrors on the

4.Do you think it would be sad if we
colour coded the contents of our handbags? No, me neither. How’s about
raspberry and tobacco? Or coffee and cream? Everything pink? Yes

5. Now I don’t know about you, but I
need a notebook. Something tiny and pretty and pleasing. Not a reporters
notepad please. Something fancy, wrapped in a ribbon to which you’ve
attached a pen. Create a tiny little scappy page or seven, that
represents your home: stick in fabric samples, paint colours, little
reprentative images…

6. Brocante your mobile phone: Use it to
store all essential info, so you don’t need an address book in your bag.
My friend Clare keeps a photo of her back garden on hers, so she can
instantly transport herself back to her favorite place in the world…

7. Survival in an ugly world is
guaranteed if we carry around a few little lifesavers: a couple of herbal teabags,
some violet pastilles, bach remedies, a vial of lavender
oil etc, etc. Think gentille and ladylike…

7. It goes without saying that a few
vintage handkerchiefs are essential…

8. Wrap a few photographs in ribbon and
pop into a ziplock bag, or take the glass out of a teeny little diamante
frame and carry your sweetheart around in style…

9. Old fashioned compact mirrors are
ubiqtuos at antique fairs and add a tiny bit of glitz to your life everytime
you look inside…

10. Pinning vintage paste brooches to
your bag is oh so chic, but if it isn’t possible, pin a little collection to
the lining inside and smile at the glamour of it every time you open
your bag…

11. Tie your house keys inside your bag
with a plait of ribbon or braid. Use a tiny little fake flower as a
keyring adornment, or keep an eye our for tiny bracelet charms and start a
keyring charm…

12. Throw in a knot of your favorite fabric to which a few drops of
your signature scent have been added, and blast a little spray of
scent into your bag, everytime you spray yourself…


**This post first appeared in my Newsletter.**
**You can buy the pattern for the scrumptious Amy Butler Covington Bag (above) here…**