I receive quite a few questions about my handbags so I will have a go at answering the most common ones:
How tall are you?
I am just over 5ft 7inches/1.71m tall and weigh about 114lb/52kg. Despite my small frame I have broad shoulders and big hair. This means I can carry off large bags.
What bags do not suit you?
Regarding my shape, I cannot wear cross-body bags (I have a large bust and they make me look like I have four boobs), backpacks (my waist-length hair gets caught in the straps), small backpacks (disappear under my hair and make me look like a hunchback).
Because of my job and the Swedish weather I cannot use very light coloured or textile bags – they just dont stand up to all-day every-day use.
Which styles do you prefer?
I use bags that can hold A4 papers, water bottle (standing up), folding ballet pumps (for wearing inside on snowy days), newspaper, and all my other things (keys, Filofax, umbrella, phone, tissues, pens, gum, penknife, business cards etc)
Most of my bags can be carried in my hand, over my arm and over my shoulder.
Which styles do you dislike?
Bags I do not like are:
- round bags with very short straps (like the LV Speedy without bottom stiffener)
- clutch bags
- very small bags
- drawstring bags
- bags with flap tops
- bags with a single strap
- cross body bags
- very structured OR very floppy bags
– the reason I don’t like them is not that I don’t like how they look – they are just not functional for me.
How many bags do you have?
I used to have 200 bags but at that stage I bought and sold bags all the time – that is how I financed each new purchase. I had a big clear-out and now I have about 50. Ten of them are very high-end and the rest are medium price point. I don’t buy very cheap bags as I don’t use them and they end up costing me more per use than my expensive ones.
For overflow though I use cheap canvas shoppers and the ones you get free with magazines. These tend to give out after heavy use and I just throw them away.
Which bags will you never sell?
I will never get rid of my discontinued Mulberry bags – my Oak Tooled Bayswater, my Luella Giselle and my Oak Roxanne.
How do you store your handbags?
I used to store them all in their dust bags, stuffed with acid-free tissue paper. But these days I leave them uncovered and unstuffed so I can use them all and look at them whenever I want.
I have the bigger, more structured ones on top of my shelves, which run the length of one wall of the bedroom. I also have a walk-in closet where other big ones are stored. The flatter ones are stored in a large antique dresser. All have to be kept away from my cats who are attracted to everything they can climb into. They do however, recognise my ‘NOT the Mulberry’ voice and scatter when they hear it!
How do you treat your handbags?
I never clean or moisturise them but I do handle them a lot and use them which means the leather tends to thrive in a way it would not if I shut them up in a cupboard for years.
For Anna – a photo of the Zara shopper showing the shoulder strap. And another photo of my old faithful ballet flats…