Shopping: Nostalgia for the Camera Bag

[Marc Jacobs Small Shutter Camera Bag, US$325. Image: modasens.com]

My very first handbag was a little blue camera bag, though I didn’t know what the style was called at the time—I was about 10! It was dark blue, not quite as deep as navy, and very plain, which is the way I liked most things as a child. I’m pretty sure I got it at TJ Maxx or Marshall’s.

I have no idea what happened to it (though, as faux leather, it probably didn’t hold up too well), but camera bags seem to be making a comeback, and I am toying with the idea of getting one for my birthday.

Here are a whole whack of styles I’ve come across. Do any catch your eye?

My favorites are the Gucci Soho Disco, the Longchamp 2.0,  the Rag & Bone Mini Flight Camera Bag, and the Vasic Collection Anselmo. I quite like the blue Moschino, as well, except for the massive gold logo on the side.

Baggu Mini Crossbody in Oxblood
Baggu Mini Crossbody in Oxblood.
US$120 at nordstrom.com
Coach butterflies crossbody bag in Black
Coach butterflies crossbody bag in Black.
US$250 at nordstrom.com
Cynthia Rowley Felix Cross Body Bag in Dark Red
Cynthia Rowley Felix Cross Body Bag in Dark Red.
US$95 at shopbop.com

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The Handbags That Got Away

[MARC by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Baby Aidan satchel. Image: farfetch.com]

I’m the sort of person who gets a little bit obsessive about one topic at a time (though luckily I stay pretty obsessed with nail polish, ha!), and recently I’ve been diving back into handbags because my birthday is coming up in the fall and I wanted to narrow down my choices and give myself time to find a good deal!

(Yes, DH and I don’t really exchange gifts. We just do gift budgets. It works out great because we no longer get disappointed about not receiving quite what we wanted! Before, I’d ended up with jewelry that I don’t really wear, and you should have seen the look on his face when I bought him an apparently subpar bottle of Scotch one year. He ain’t never gonna live that look down.)

Anyway, handbags are the only fashion items I’ve been interested in buying, simply because I’m losing my pregnancy weight and even my damn shoes are too snug right now. Clothing will have to wait. I’ve already decided that once I get back to my pre-pregnancy weight—and I will! Right?—I’ll treat myself to a new wardrobe. But for now, handbags! Weeee!

My shortlist is pretty small now, so I just have to decide what I really want. But while I was doing my research, it got me thinking about bags that, for one reason or another, I have had on my wishlist for ages. Many are discontinued (style or color), so the secondhand market is the only place to find them now. Most of these bags will remain on my wishlist forever, I feel, but I enjoyed compiling them into a single blog post for sharing.

Alexander Wang Rockie satchel in Nectar
Alexander Wang Rockie in Nectar.
Image: fwrd.com

Alexander Wang — Rockie
The Rockie is the perfect size for my petite stature (the Rocco is too large for me), but reviews all say this is still one heavy bag, thanks to all the gorgeous hardware it sports. Part of me also feels I’m not cool enough for the bag, so I continue to admire it from afar. I especially love this one in nude and pastel shades with silver or rose gold hardware.

Christian Dior Miss Dior in Crimson
Christian Dior Miss Dior in Crimson.
Image: bragmybag.com

Christian Dior — Miss Dior
This is beyond my comfort zone, price-wise. Simple enough reason! Isn’t that chain strap gorgeous, though? Most bag aficionados are gaga for Chanel’s quilted flaps, but for me, Dior and their cannage stitching is the grail. Sadly, I don’t see the Miss Dior on the official site any more.

Coach Borough in Retro Colorblock Oxblood/Olive
Coach Borough in Retro Colorblock Oxblood/Olive.
Image: thebay.com

Coach — Borough (Retro Colorblock Oxblood/Olive)
Coach has come out with some beautiful styles lately. Every time I see someone carrying this, I wish I’d gotten one—but I don’t work in an office and this bag doesn’t fit my lifestyle. (As if a Miss Dior does! Hahahaha.)

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Planning My Next Handbag Addition, & Bags I Added in 2014

I am not the girliest of girls (proclaims the “girl” who runs a nail polish blog!) but I do love my handbags.

My very first leather bag was one of two: it was either a red Coach demi shoulder bag with the softest, smoothest leather—this was around 15 years ago, folks! baguettes were in and Coach leather was super—or an edgier, cement-grey Hype hobo in no-fuss, slightly shiny but still very soft leather.

Hype, Everest pocket hobo, Steel
Hype, Everest pocket hobo in Steel.
Image: bluefly.com

I want to say it was the Coach that was first. Either way, I adored the Coach but didn’t get that many chances to use it, since it was so small. I also loved the Hype and used it to hell! It was fantastic because it had a comfortable, adjustable strap that let me wear it both on the shoulder and crossbody. Plus, I found that grey goes with almost everything.

Fast forward about 15 years and I’m really happy with my bag collection, and am thinking of trimming it down—I have a lot of bags that I no longer use and should really just donate—and, of course, I’d love to add a brand new bag, as well!

It turns out that I didn’t buy a single handbag for myself last year. That’s pretty stunning, because I don’t think I’ve had a no-handbag year for…many years…before 2015. It’s probably a sign that I’m mostly satisfied with my collection. (Either that, or I spent too much money on nail polish last year.) I definitely go through shopping phases—in 2014, I got a number of bags, but hardly any makeup at all! And last year it was the reverse.

On a more personal note, the last week has been a bit trying, as I’ve had to go to the doctor more often than I’d like—even a first-ever trip to the emergency room for me—and as a result I’ve neglected the blog even more. Today I am satisfied that everything is all right for the time being, but since I was trying to take my mind off medical issues for the last several days, I got bitten by the handbag bug again! Internet shopping is so evil, but what else can you do when you’re instructed to rest all day?

Luckily, it’s only been internet window shopping. My clicky finger has been stayed by the atrocious and only getting atrocious-er Canadian to US dollar exchange rate (we’re at 70 cents to the dollar, now, eek) so I’m just starting to compile my shortlist for My Next Handbag Addition, Which, If I Wait for the Canadian Dollar to Partially Recover, Might Not Even Be For 2016.

I’ve bought way too much Rebecca Minkoff in 2014, so I’ll probably move on to something else, particularly since I’m not keen on most of her new styles. Here’s a list of the bags I added in 2014 (keep in mind that I barely bought any makeup and clothes in 2014!), and after that I’ll share my Next Handbag Shortlist.

Handbags I Added in 2014

Rachel Nasvik, Phoebe satchel, Grey
Rachel Nasvik, Phoebe Satchel in Grey. Image: lyst.com

Rachel Nasvik

Phoebe Satchel in Grey

Rachel Nasvik, based out of New York City, used to make the most gorgeous vintage-inspired handbags that are made in the USA! She hasn’t really done much in recent years, which makes me really sad, but I did manage to add this grey Patricia to my very small RN collection (which also includes a burgundy Patricia, a white/tan Bianca, and a black Phoebe). The Patricia is a little awkward to carry due to its size, but I love the styling to pieces! The bags all come with a bright cobalt blue cotton lining, too.

I have eBay email me every time a Rachel Nasvik bag pops up there; I bought this used (or “pre-loved”, as they like to say!) for US$50.

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Fashion: Coach – Rainbow Shearling Handbag Collection

I don’t usually post about fashion, but an email from Coach left me no choice.

I like small, colorful handbags the way I like nail polish (yep, that’s a lot) but Coach’s new lineup, Rainbow Shearling just makes my skin crawl!

There’s a whole assortment of these horrid things in different shapes and sizes.

Coach Rainbow Shearling handbag collection
Image: coach.com

I have a soft spot for Coach since my first foray into nicer handbags was one of their small demi bags (in red, and not dissimilar in shape from the bags pictured above). But it came in lovely, soft, smooth leather. This half sheep abomination with studded trim leftover from their Rhyder collection? Nope nope nope!