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September 22, 2005

LL Bean Bags


Now that I have an hour long commute everyday, instead of my previous commute from the bathroom to the dining room table, I've been keeping an eye out for some good sensible commuting bags.

LL Bean has a good selection of totes, and you can't beat their customer service as we all learned in Marketing 101.

I've found myself quite facinated with the Hunter's Tote Bag, Zip-Top in camouflage, of course. And if a bag can stand up to "waterfowling, dog training or shooting" it can probably handle the MBTA.

My only complaint is that the handles look very short and I couldn't sling the bag over my shoulder.


News Roundup

Two recent articles of note:

Spending not in fashion right now

Since mid-July, new fall fashions like shrunken brown velvet jackets and Victorian-style blouses have been gathering dust on racks at the nation's retailers.

It's almost the end of September, and for many merchants a combination of hot weather, subdued fashions in dark colors, high gasoline prices, and the ripple effects of Hurricane Katrina have made shoppers stay away from clothing stores.

You know what this means...BIG sales are on their way! I'll be keeping an eye out in the next couple of months.

Son of Cool
Has anyone seen this tote bag mentioned in this NYT article about Esprit?

A large tote bag in subtle metallic gunmetal is $29 and looks as if it might cost $400.

Sounds like it might be worth checking out.


September 21, 2005

Guest Bag Blogger: Beth from Just My Cup of Tea

I love a Great Bag. Who doesn’t? But my true weakness? I am a total sucker for finding that Great Bag at a fantastic price. And even better? Finding it at a totally unexpected place.

For example:

Friend: I love your bag! Where did you get it?
Me: I From Salvation Army
Friend: I Really? You should tell people you got it from some boutique on the Lower East Side
Me: INo way! It’s cooler because I got it at a thrift store.

Of course you can find a beautiful bag at Prada or Kate Spade or Louis Vuitton – that’s easy-as-pie! But what about Old Navy? Or H&M? Or Goodwill? Are you up to the challenge?

I am. Always.

For me half the fun is the hunt. Finding that perfect something you didn’t know you needed and don’t know how you could have lived without for all these years. And the bonus? The sheer sticker shock you have when you realize you won’t have to rearrange your finances to manage the bag and your rent.

I thought I’d share a few of my favorite finds.

Exhibit 1:
This beaut is from H&M. I love everything about it – the size, the color, the shape – and especially the price. $49.99 and 100% real leather. This is the type of bag that pulls together absolutely any outfit. And it has that boho-chic feel I can never resist. I’m certain Sienna Miller would approve. And at this price, I can buy the bag and a copy of US Weekly.

Exhibit 2:
Like a man, a good clutch is hard to find. This one however, was love at first sight. I found it at the Salvation Army in Syracuse, New York and I am not kidding when I tell you it cost $1. I use it all the time. Dressed up. Dressed down. Sometimes I even carry it when I’m not dressed at all. But that’s another article for another time.

Exhibit 3:
This red number is another thrift store find and though I’d be lying if I told you I remember which thrift store I bought it from, I clearly remember the price: $3.99. Yep, you read me. I got this bag for less than it costs to get a grande iced mocha at Starbucks. It’s completely classic and yet modern at the same time. And the color? To die for. A total traffic stopper.

Exhibit 4:
I found this bag when I popped into Old Navy – literally – to kill 5 minutes before meeting friends. I did a quick (and unsuccessful) breeze through the store and on my way out I saw this bag hanging on the wall with a “50% off” sign displayed prominently above it. Before I knew it, I was in a line, debit card in hand. This bag – which cost me $8.94 including tax - reminds me of something you’d see on a sophisticated, yet totally cool urbanite or as part of the perfect mix-and-match outfit. And I have to admit, a major reason I am so madly in love with this bag is its rich purple-pink lining. Of course no one will see that but me, but it’s a little secret I am happy to have.

You can find the author at Just My Cup of Tea.
She likes other things besides bags. Like shoes, magazines, cupcakes, margaritas and boys.


September 20, 2005

Cole Haan Lunch Tote


Have you ever seen a bag and fallen instantly in love with it? Me too. But have you ever seen a bag, and not liked it much the first time, and then took a second look and fallen in love? That's how I felt when I saw the new Cole Haan Lunch Totes.

Besides the fun name, I like that the tote looks roomy and has lots of access from the top. Plus the strap and the way it loops through the bag is very unique. The olive metallic is my favorite, and it also comes in a Mini Lunch Tote.

I'd need to see it in person to be sure, but I think this may be my fall IT bag!


New LeSportsSac bag


I love LeSportsac because I have fond memories of the 80's.

I had this great black, messenger-ish bag from LeSportsac that I carried with me everyday for about a year, around 2002. It had lots of pockets for all my junk and had an adjustable strap to I could wear it as a shoulder bag or a messenger.

So what if the only other people I saw with this bag were old ladies in Chinatown? I loved it, and since then I have always been on the look out for the Next Great LeSportsac bag.

I think I may have found it in the LeSportsac City Satchel in Bonnie Black or Totem print. The size looks good, and I love the side pockets. Perfect for my T pass and chapstick. I think the flowers in the Bonnie Black print would cheer me up even in the dead of winter.

By the way, for those of you who in the Boston area, Filene's Basement is a great place to pick up discount LeSportsacs.


Target Slouchy Hobo


Have you read the blog Slave to Target yet? It is by two women who love Target so much they want to marry it! Who doesn't?

Speaking of Target I was there last week picking up some sensible items (a new shower curtain rod and some Clean & Clear Dual Action Moisturizer) and I spotted this lovely boho suede bag in red.

Now I loves me some good boho fashion since I normally gravitate towards anything that looks like it might have been worn walking down Haight-Ashbury, circa 1968. The reason for this (I think) is because when I was 15, and started getting into fashion my first Seventeen magazine had a spread with all hippie clothes. So that style has been permanently stamped on my brain, and has made it hard for me to try out different styles. So I was quite happy to see boho become all the rage this Spring, but I have since been wondering if that is now out of style, but it looks like I can rest easy since I saw this bag in Target.

The suede was nice and slouchy and the bag was a good size with some interior pockets. The only bad thing was the the shoulder strap was extremely fake leather that is noticeable from a mile away. Maybe is you had it over you shoulder and under your arm, however, it wouldn't look as bad.

Better grab yours quickly though since there were only a few left so they must be flying off the shelves.


Don't Miss TBB Flickr Group

Three Houses Bag: available, originally uploaded by Lizette Greco.

There's some great bag photos being posted to The Bag Blog Group at flickr.com and I wanted to make sure everyone here checked it out. There are photos of all kinds of cool bags, many that are made from scratch.
Feel free to post photos of your favorite bag to the group pool. Photos of both bags made by crafty folks or a bag you bought in a store are welcome!


September 11, 2005

My Fall Shopping List: Work in progress

I've been inspired by the scrapbooks and fall shopping list over at Just My Cup of Tea.

So I have decided to keep my running list here in this post. Expect frequent updates. Though one problem is that I really can't do much fall shopping until I get a job and find out what the dess code is. I don't want to spend all my money on jeans and then found out I need to wear trouser pants to a new job everyday.

Fall 2005 Shopping List
Theme: Classics with a boho twist




Things not on this list that I bought spur of the moment...
..even though that defeats the whole purpose of the list to plan out my shopping and avoid impulse buys but I guess old habits die hard.

Still deciding what my "IT" bag for the Fall will be.


September 9, 2005

Retail Report: Filene's Basement in Boston

Back in January I admired the Cole Haan Trinity Python Satchel in black. Today I spotted the same bag but in white in the bargain bins at Filene's Basement in Downtown Crossing. I certainly contemplated buying it, especially since it was 25% off, but I never liked the white version as much as the black. But if you were partial to white and near the Boston area, you could pick this up yourself for a steal.

The Basement also had a good selection of those cute Coach canvas totes in blue and red. The small totes was $49.99 up to $119.00 for the largest tote. I also considered buying the large tote as a commuting bag, but decided I should wait until I get a job to buy a commuting bag.


September 6, 2005

Ask the Bag Lady: Whimsical Lacoste Laptop Bag?


TBB reader Vanessa writes in looking for a professional, yet unique and whimsical carrying case for her new iBook. Specifically she wanted a striped Lacoste bag.

Vanessa, I'm not sure if I found exactly THE bag you were looking for, but I did find this Lacoste bag with a cute striped handle that looks like it may fit an iBook, while looking cute as a button.

Also, check out Lacoste.com for some cute messenger bags that also look like they would fit an iBook.