Girl bought a bag
In the last quarter of 2017, I bought my first ‘high-end’ handbag. I feel embarrassed even writing the words ‘high-end’ or God forbid ‘luxury’. I admit that these are just fancy words to convey that the price is exorbitant and eye-watering. After about 2 years of looking and mulling over, I finally bit the bullet. I got a Chanel Double Flap. Nothing ground breaking. I will not bore you with the details of the actual bag. This is a bag which has been reviewed and re-reviewed all over the internet.
I only consulted one person (a blogger friend) in my decision making. She gave great advice and helped seal the deal. Thank you H!! There is nothing left to write about the actual bag and the brand. It has all been said before! So, I thought I will take a different route and talk about the bags that were serious contenders to the Chanel Double Flap.
Here are the bags that were in the race, along with the Chanel Double Flap, but did not make the cut:
- Louis Vuitton Twist PM: This bag holds quite a bit, comes in quite a few colors. I am really not a big fan of the brand or the coated canvas with the monogram prints. But I cannot help but admire the subtle-ness of Epi leather and its durability. I really liked the look of this bag and the cool twist lock. When I tried the actual bag in the store, I immediately knew this bag was not for me. The chain of this bag was the heaviest among all chain bags I ever tried!! It was a no go 😦 A very insightful friend also suggested that I nix this bag from the list if I was actually looking to buy a classic, long-term bag.
- Celine Box Bag: Oh Celine! This decision was exceptionally hard. I love Phoebe Philo’s aesthetic and ethos. The Box Bag’s buckle was redesigned to look sleek and modern. The old horse carriage was replaced with a minimal rectangular buckle. Phoebe Philo most definitely put Celine back on the fashion map. With her leaving, there have been quite a few odes to her and the time she spent heading Celine. Of course, I cannot like all Celine Bags. Some of the bags have very poor ergonomics. There have also been complaints about the lack of after sales support and services for Celine bags. But for me, the Box bag is an exception. I have admired it for so long now. The clean lines, the lack of logos, the simple minimalist hardware are to die for! Unfortunately, the bag looks frumpy on me. The medium size Celine Box bag looks really big and bulky on my person. My husband even joked –‘I would have never guessed that all you wanted was a Postman’s bag!’. I tried the smaller size. The fact that this bag may not fit a large smart phone or a proper pair of sunglasses (even without the case) was a deal breaker. On the smaller size Box bag, the accordion style is an inconvenience rather than an asset. It hinders from using the space efficiently and looks too bulky with just a phone, and few things in it. But, doesn’t the small look so cute and adorable!?
- Hermes Constance 18 cm: To be able to buy an Hermes as you first ‘big girl’ handbag would be a dream come true. To top it, if you could escape from the clutches of the Birkin vs Kelly debate (of course, naturally the Kelly wins for me), and take the high road with a Constance! Ah! A girl can always dream. In retrospect, I don’t think the Hermes Gods would ever bless me with a new bag, just because I marched myself to the store and asked to buy one. Also, buying a Constance in the store is not affordable for me. So, I was sure I would be going the second hand route. But, in the end I could never look past the giant H, that is unmistakable and ‘oh so obvious’. Dear Hermes, can you please do us all a favor and re-interpret that buckle please? In retrospect, if the Celine Box Bag did not suit me, I don’t think the Hermes Constance would have – they are both very similar.
So, finally here we are…
Chanel Double Flap: Then we come to the most obvious and the most ‘common’ bag of all. In recent times, everything from the Chanel quilting to the chain to the double C logo has been criticized. You see, Chanel is no longer ‘high brow’ enough. It is not clever like a Loewe Puzzle bag or minimal like a Celine Box bag. It is too mainstream and frankly I resented this about it. To add to it, there are all the quality issues everyone has been talking about. But, every time I visited a Chanel store and tried this ‘oh-so-mainstream’ and ‘instantly recognizable’ bag, I couldn’t help but admire the beauty of its design. The Boy Bag, the GST, the gaint double CC brooches – I cannot see the beauty in any of them. But the classic double flap? It is beautiful in my eyes. I loved how well this bag sits on my shoulder, how easy to pair it felt! The other thought I couldn’t ignore? Even if I bought any of the 3 handbags I mentioned above, I would still want a Chanel Double Flap. This simple fact sealed the deal. They say some of the best decisions are made by process of elimination. And here we are! When you are going to throw away so much money, you better get something that makes your heart sing (and pray that it was not the internet influencing you).