It’s In The Bag

So many magazines arrived on Monday that they had to be heaped inside the storm door rather than dropped through the slot.  A good day.  Carefully sitting down to lunch with my stack (which one first – start here, go slow) I welcomed two happy surprises.  Town & Country, to which I subscribe for the jewelry ads and articles, has several very good home features. And, Elle Decor, to which I subscribe for the heavenly homes, had a big, fat jewelry feature on Jean Schlumberger.

R. Louis Bofferding tells us a tale in Elle Decor that Kitty Miller, Duarte Pinto-Coelho and Billy Baldwin, legendary bon vivants, were discussing what the contents of a lady’s bag reveals about her.  (What else would you be discussing in the ’60’s sipping Bloody Marys in Majorca?)  Tipping Miller’s bag produced a cascade of Jean Schlumberger goodies, “cigarette lighter, cigarette case, powder box, lipstick case – everything you can imagine.” recalled Baldwin.

It does, indeed, say a lot about Mrs. Miller.  What then, friends, would the contents of my bag say about Mrs. Blandings?  Phone, Mason Pearson brush, vintage Wayfarers (I charged them to my dad while in college and received an earful,) three lipsticks, all different brands, all the same color, calendar, Moleskin, paint chips, workout schedule (I grab one nearly every time to eliminate my excuse of not knowing when the classes are,) two pens, a pencil (I can be manic about having a writing instrument,) a jazzy little J. Crew card case that has become my wallet as it holds business cards, check card and driver’s license (I never seem to have cash anyway) and three Legos.  My bag usually holds my camera, too, but I was, well, using it to take the picture.  While this might seem a bit styled, you can be assured that it is not, as I would have never chosen a green Lego.  And I can’t believe there were only three.
I’m a bit envious of Mrs. Miller.
Center photo Town & Country, October 2008.  Photograph by Gabriella Imperatori – Penn.  The enameled bracelets in the bottom left of the image are Jean Schlumberger for Tiffany, just to give you and idea of what filled Kitty Miller’s bag.  The Smythson aqua Deluxe Five Drawer jewelry box would be such a happy home for one’s baubles.
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28 thoughts on “It’s In The Bag

  1. shocked you still have the sunglasses from so long ago – lost left behind – maybe you have mine at your house? I wish in your photo- you had included your bag !
    im near getting the next version of one i have that has been great – I caught it out of the corner of my eye last trip in and will look at it on sunday – thinking one can be the bag and one can be the tote… but i was planning the T.Anthony that looks like a bottega sigh what to do
    please look at it in BLACK! not as the link shows up … this one has outside pockets which i think will be great – mine has a canvas shoulder strap and thick braided handles ….. what do you think – too close – I dont even like prada … imagine<>prd_id=845524446190997&FOLDER<>folder_id=282574492709717&ASSORTMENT<>ast_id=1408474399545537&bmUID=1221021911072&ev19=1:11

    you getting all your mags makes me think i haven't been renewing as I should – they send the cards so damn early – i always put it off

    check out "hot flops" what fun – I got the periwinkle with green grapes in virginia

  2. Leaving a bar in Brookside a few weeks ago and feeling very “young” for being at a bar in Brookside, I felt it necessary to inform my husband that I was fairly certain that I was the only woman in the bar with a size 4 Huggies diaper in her purse. And a baggie of yogurt covered raisins. (At least the purse was cute.)

    Someday, I’ll be cool and sophisticated? Maybe?

  3. We use the same J Crew card case as a wallet. Do you believe it? Mine is smudgey turquoise. I may have to take a picture.

    And you were so smart to save those sunglasses. Such an inspired post.

  4. There is going to be a run on those J Crew card cases, with two such notable endorsements!

    An inspired post indeed. Thanx for sharing.

  5. Anon – I will be sure to go look. My bags are never of note or of name – good leather, good shape and versatile. Drag, huh?

  6. Courtney – I always feel so oddly satisfied when we have something in common. I do want to see a picture. And, as far as smart, it’s more messy really. Not exactly a calculated decision. Dumb luck.

  7. Love that you carry your Mason-Pearson with you. I was only yesterday complimenting mine for sticking by me for 25 years. Such a good friend! Only wish it knew what to do with my cow-licks.

  8. Meg & Mimi Lee – I love it, too, for the content, which is sometimes unintentionally hilarious. Take a look at how Kelly Kline is adjusting to motherhood. That is not what it looked like around here.

  9. Hahaha! I love this! Perhaps it would be fun to do a blogger’s purse round-up. I know many who will change purses every day, but I usually just have one oversizd black bag that has everything under the sun. I usually have a client file, magazine, book (for the music lesson wait), notepads, Motrin,Tums,Handiwipes,hairbands,camera….I think half my stuff is for me, the other half for my family.

    You have inspired me to look for some more stylish purse accessories! Fun post.

  10. dont any of you remember the sunday morning SANDY BECKER SHOW ( or am i showing my age -again?) – weekly he invited someone from the audience and emptied their purse on his desk ,it was wild –
    I agree with katie did- Miss Havisham had everyone send in pics of the inside of their fridge – it was a great week – ( i dont mean to co-opt your site mrs b ) but who would be in ( all in as the poker players say )
    and are you game mrs.blandings –
    if we go photo the purse as well !!
    anon in ny

  11. I was having a senior moment. This post reminded me of something I had read in the past about a Parisian artist who paints portraits of the contents of women’s purses and I wanted to share it with you. At first I thought the artist was a photographer. This was driving me nuts. I became obsessed and spent an hour googling until I found it! An article in the New York Times written by Alice Steinbach on June 10, 2001, entitled: “Out There–Paris; Portraits: You Are What You Carry”. The artist’s name is Nathalie Lecroc. Alas, no photos! I am going to google her name to see if I can find one of her portraits. I forgive myself the senior moment — after all the article was 7 years old. The things we remember!

  12. You showed me yours, now I’ll show you mine:
    Small leopard make up bag used for change purse.
    Red leather wallet.
    Teeny bopper glittery small make up bag (it has a lady with red high heels walking a poodle on it) with over size Planet Tango business cards.
    Leopard coin purse with key chain for my keys with color coded key thingees.
    2 pairs: reading glasses.
    Tape measure.
    Tango dance shoes.
    No cell phone (I hate them).
    No iPod – I still listen to CDs.
    Purse of choice: Red fake Birkin.

  13. Mrs. B., nicely edited content for a handbag. At least from what I’ve witnessed.

    You’ve given me a great idea for a post on all the nonsense that we must carry in our pockets while trying not to ruin the line of our suits!

  14. I had to jump in on this one, even though I don’t have a purse, I just made the jump to a great leather backpack that I scored on eBay for $16, but it was barely used and had to have cost hundreds. It’s a great “bag” and I had to also tell you Mrs. Blandings, that we share the same sunglasses. At the time I bought my vintage tortoise RayBan Wayfarer’s my hair was the same color as the glasses…auburn. Now my hair is darker with gray sprinkled in it…but my Kennedyesque Wayfarers have seen many beaches in several countries. I’d never wear anything else. As they are glass and I’ve taken very good care of them, they aren’t even scratched. But back to the “man-bag” as my coworker called it…Contents: Wayfarers, Computer Glasses, Driving/glasses, Sony PowerShot A-720IS, iPod Photo, Red Blackberry, David McCullough’s 1776, Eyedrops, Benedryl, Sharpies (in plastic bag) pens, small spiral notebook (House Journal) with window sizes, room dimensions, paint swatches, fabric swatches, and pictures of each room. Very handy to have.

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