Tuesday Shoesday – No shoes, but a new satchel

I’ve decided to write about my new handbag for this week’s Tuesday Shoesday blog post. Okay, I know it’s not strictly a shoesday post without any shoes, but the handbag did come from shoe brand Hotter, so I think it’s the ideal time to talk about handbags.handbag-wine-burgundy-satchel-bag-retro-school-crossbody-1-of-3Now, I’m not someone who will buy a new handbag just because I like the look of it, or because it matches an outfit or follows a new trend. In fact, I don’t buy bags very often at all. I don’t have a different bag for every occasion or for different seasons. Nope, I tend to choose one bag and that one bag will do me very nicely until it falls apart. And that’s when I’ll buy another one.handbag-wine-burgundy-satchel-bag-retro-school-crossbody-2-of-3You may have guessed from this that I don’t see handbags as a fashion accessory. I see them as purely practical; something to carry my important stuff from one place to another. I’m not saying that it doesn’t matter at all what the handbag looks like, because I have my preferences in the looks department too. But most important is that it can fit everything in, with lots of pockets and is easy to carry. handbag-wine-burgundy-satchel-bag-retro-school-crossbody-3-of-3My last two handbags have been Disaster Designs satchels. The first one I tried was the best. I really liked how it looked, with a map-print design and brown faux-leather flap. It was big enough to fit in everything I needed to carry, even notepads and ipads could fit in there. In fact, it was a little too big at times – if I only needed to carry a purse, it seemed to get lost in the vast space inside the bag, swishing around like a teabag in a bucket. But it lasted for years. I’m taking maybe 2-3 years before it finally started coming apart. I’d already ruined the lining with a leaky pen and plenty of spilled makeup by this point, but I was still sad to see it go.Whats in blogger Cassiefairys handbag-1

So when it was time to replace this bag, I plumped for another satchel from Disaster Designs. This time I went smaller, having learnt that I didn’t always need a big satchel. But I suspect that I took it too far the other way, because it was difficult to fit everything into that handbag. A purse and phone almost filled it up, so I often found myself carrying an extra canvas bag with my other bits n pieces in. It was too small, and I needed one that was somewhere between the two – just right.replacement-handbag-broken-bagPlus this handbag, rather disappointingly, started falling apart after only a couple of months. The magnetic clasp was the first thing to come loose, after only a few weeks. Then the faux leather on the front and back of the handbag started crumbling off. You can see from the photo that it was once a blue ‘leather’ which is now just a black lining fabric. Even so, I’ve stuck with the handbag for 8 months, but now it’s time for it to go. I’m not at all happy with how quickly it crumbled, especially considering how long my last Disaster Designs satchel lasted for.handbag-wine-burgundy-satchel-bag-retro-school-crossbody-1-of-3So when Hotter ran a competition on their twitter page to win an accessory from their current collection, I knew I had to enter. Having chosen comfy Hotter shoes for every special event I’ve been to over the past 4 years, I knew that the quality would be great. I picked out another satchel design – the “Romilly” cross-body bag – and kept my fingers crossed as I tweeted my competition entry.

Wahooo, I won! My dream Hotter handbag was on its way to me in the post. I couldn’t wait to see what it looked like in real life, and hoped that it would be big enough to carry my day-to-day things. Thankfully, it is one of those just right handbags that I always wanted; not so huge that it was like lugging a school bag around with me, but not too small to fit in my camera.handbag-wine-burgundy-satchel-bag-retro-school-crossbody-2-of-3With a zipped pocket on the back, a couple of pouches on the inside for my phone and lipbalms, a roomy centre section and another zipped interior pocket, it was everything I’d hoped for. My go-to satchel shape is a very sturdy boxy design, so I don’t feel like my make-up is going to get smooshed inside it. Plus, it’s in a perfect go-with-everything burgundy wine colour, that looks great with my navy coat.handbag-wine-burgundy-satchel-bag-retro-school-crossbody-3-of-3All in all I’m rather chuffed with my new handbag and I’d definitely go to Hotter again the next time I need a satchel. Although, judging by its performance so far, and how very sturdy it is, I’m sure that I won’t be replacing it for many years to come.

What do you look for in a handbag? Do you keep yours for years or change your handbag to match your outfit? And have you ever won anything in a competition that you really needed or wanted? I’d love to hear from you so please leave me a comment below.

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Cassie Fairy
Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in lifestyle promotion studies. She loves to 'get the look for less' so regularly shares thrifty fashion posts, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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