I’ve always wanted to invent something useful for women. I’m thinking along the line of shapers (The History of Shapers here!) or the Sleevey Wonder that adds sleeves to sleeveless dresses or the flocked hanger (thank you Joy Mangano) that is in every client’s closet now.
I swear I’m paying attention but I haven’t quite come up with a hassle-eliminator…until now. If I ever had a fantasy of inventing something and making money doing it, this idea isn’t going to qualify. But I do think I’m about to solve a problem for you. It’s a problem I’ve had for a long time and I’m surprised it took me until this week to figure out the solution, but here it is for free.
Problem: You can’t find anything in your handbag with compartments
Have you ever had this happen? You have a handbag that has two separate zippered compartments. You put stuff in both of the compartments but when the time comes to look for your lipstick you can’t remember which section it’s in so you scrounge around digging deeper and deeper. You push stuff to one side and then the other. No luck. So you go to the other compartment and repeat. You still can’t find it so you go back to the other side. Meanwhile, you’re feeling so uncool. It’s a handbag. How hard can this be, right? You’re beginning to lose your poise. Beads of sweat are appearing on your upper lip.
It’s insanely irritating. You have all that handbag real estate and you still can’t gracefully locate what you need.
I have a solution to guarantee at least 50% less frazzlement. That’s a word, right?
Solution: Eliminate the option of using both compartments
I’m demonstrating my invention with my Calleen Cordero mushroom-brown leather bag with dual compartments. I was feeling sad because I don’t grab this bag much anymore. I have looked so uncool countless times trying to find things in it.
This morning’s solution? To be more efficient and confident I’ve sealed off one of the compartments. It sounds counterintuitive, but stay with me. If you stuff your bags to help them hold their shape when you’re not using them, keep the stuffing in one of the sides and zip it closed.
Now, how do you know which side has the stuffing and which side has your stuff?
Labeling the compartment that’s functional
You know how we tie a ribbon on the handle of our luggage so it’s easy to find our bag on the carousel at the airport? If you’ve only done carryon, ask someone what they did in the old days. I did and do use this trick when I’m traveling and checking a bag. So what you do in this handbag situation is find a little ribbon to attach to the zipper of the side you’re going to be using.
I have a hanger where I put ribbons that can be repurposed. I went to that ribbon stash to look for my solution and there was a ribbon that has been waiting for this moment. It’s white with black polka dots but it has a mini handbag charm on it. See? I think it came off a box of fashion related stationary and I kept it.
I used that ribbon with the charm and put it on the unstuffed side of my bag and tied a knot. Easy peasy. This will remind me which compartment I’m using.
Now that I’ve eliminated half the problem, I will confine my belongings to one side and not be tempted to spread my stuff out between both compartments.
You’re saying, but the point of having a bag with compartments is you can hold more stuff. You’re right, you can. But just because you can, it doesn’t mean you should. When women have lots of closet space, it’s easy to pack in lots of clothes whether they need them or not, wear them or not. Women with less closet space tend to be efficient because they don’t have that extra space to hold stuff. Same with handbags. If you have the space in your handbag your mind automatically goes to figuring out how to fill it. But you don’t have to.
Last weekend I cleaned out a junk drawer in our kitchen and realized most of what was in there I didn’t need. The same holds true for handbags; they get cluttered so easily.
When I curb the space, I keep things to a minimum. I really only need to carry a handkerchief, a lens cleaning cloth for my glasses, a pen and pencil, a small notebook, my key, wallet, and lipstick.
Throwing out a challenge
What in your handbag could you take out right now and not miss? Is there more than one thing? Two? Five? Seven things? Tell the truth. In fact, tell all of us! What are those things you never use?
I used this bag today, all day. Only I knew my little secret. Did I experience less frazzle? Yes! Did I look uncool even once today? No! Would you consider trying this?
If not, what are your handbag tricks so you find what you need in record time? I’m all ears!!