Monday, February 11, 2013

Challenge - Day 11: "In Your Bag"

You don't really want to know what's in my bag, because there's nothing interesting. I'm just another one of those women who keeps a lot of "stuff" in there just case the need arises. The contents were a lot more entertaining when I had small children and carried what I called "a mom purse." That held all kinds of games, food and miscellaneous paraphernalia necessary for a mom on the go. 

Much more interesting than what's in my bag is the bag itself. As usual, it comes with a story. Two years ago I spent several weeks in the summer with my niece in Europe. She and her husband lived in Germany, where he was stationed with the Air Force. At the time of my visit, her husband was deployed to Iraq, so she and I had the whole visit to do whatever we wanted. One of our mini-trips was to Bruges, Belgium where we spent three days touring and shopping. (I wrote about our moving tour of WWI batterfields and memorial cemeteries in this previous post.) The shopping in Bruges was fantastic, with many unique stores and boutiques, not just the usual brands you see wherever you travel in the world. While walking back to our hotel one afternoon, I spied a purse in a store window and knew I had to have it, no matter the price. Fortunately it turned out to be very reasonable for an all leather purse. It's called the Tulip and designed by Linde Van der Poel under the company name by-Lin. Her designs are sold in several stores in The Netherlands, Belgium and Germany and, at the time I bought the purse, she was planning expansion to England and the U.S.  All of her designs are inspired by nature -- flowers, leaves and the like -- and are unique and very eye-catching. 

The Tulip is her signature piece and is referenced throughout her collection. I have it in red leather. The purse is what it sounds like, a large tulip. The top is operated by a leather drawstring so, as you open the purse, the petals unfold and one can easily access everything in the bag. 

It will actually open even wider than shown in the photograph, almost to the point where it lies flat. Isn't it fabulous? 

When I got home from the trip I couldn't wait to unpack my fabulous bag and start carrying it around. I just knew everyone would think it was as fabulous as I did. And you know what? They did. Everywhere I went people asked, "Where did you get that fabulous bag?" and I would tell the story. Men would stop me in the mall to ask where they could get one like it for their wives. I would be on my way into a restaurant and someone would yell at me from across the street, "Great purse!" Friends and relatives wanted me to get my niece to go back to Bruges, buy bags for them and ship them here. You know, fabulous-ness wears thin after a little while. I started wanting to be anonymous again, to blend in with the crowd. I found myself tucking the tulip bag under my coat, trying to hide how fabulous it really was, until the point came where I just switched bags. Yes, I put the fabulous Tulip bag in the closet where I alone could admire it and went back to only being noticed when I really wanted to be. But now I am thinking it is time to bring it out again. I think I'm strong enough to bear the responsibility

When you have the time, go to by-Lin's website via this link. This designer really does have some beautiful, creative items in her collection. And if you think you can handle it, order one for yourself and experience being fabulous first hand. I suspect most of you already are.

Thanks for stopping by. 

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