This weekend we have our Natasha talking about one of her little weaknesses .....
Hands up who loves a good handbag???
Okay, we'd better pause here and get our terminology straight. A 'purse', to me, is the thing you directly put your money into. A 'wallet' is something carried by a man. I'll stick with that because I have deadline brain.
But, don't you just loooove them? Handbags and shoes. Well, truthfully any great fashion accessory which doesn't necessitate me eating lettuce and two small carrots gets my vote.
I like to think my obsession has come from having spent so many years being pregnant. My shoe size and ability to carry a bag being the constants in my life. Even so, whilst thinning out my wardrobe this week, I was a little staggered by the rainbow of bags I own. What's more you can pretty much chart the course of my life when you look at them.
Obviously there are some ongoing preferences. I'm a city girl so there's none of those open 'reach in and grab' bags in my collection. Even though I no longer battle my way around London on the tube I still opt for a secure fastening.
That aside there are the 'a handbag to match every outfit' years, the long strap years (so chosen so I could oh-so-attractively wear it across my body whilst juggling a double buggy, assorted toddlers and a nappy bag), the 'big' bag years (where I carried a collection of pencils and drawing paper in case of offspring boredom and assorted used sweetie wrappers) and now I appear to have entered the era of the really-too-expensive handbag.
And that got me thinking ...
Your handbag says a lot about you, doesn't it? Why you've chosen what you've chosen. How you look after it. (I've got a friend who vacuums out the inside of hers, wraps the buckles in tissue and stores them in pillowcases!! That's going to have to go in a book some day.) What you put in it.
A quick peek in mine and you'll have a very clear idea of the woman I am. What my heroine keeps in hers is very indicative of the woman she is too!!
So, for the record ...... in mine I have:
A purse. It's black leather. Shiny because I've owned it for so many years despite the fact it's a stupid design. You unzip it and coins always fall out because the inner bit doesn't come up high enough. It's annoyed me since the day I bought it.
I have visa slips. Always. Sadly I am a 'stuffer'. I like to think that's because I don't like to hold anyone up in the queue behind me.
A sanitary towel - because I like to be prepared.
A notebook - for those moments of brilliant inspiration. Mine is gorgeous. It has a pocket at the back where I 'stuff' work receipts in a vague attempt at organisation.
A spare pen.
A few business cards.
A metal tape measure - because I have an auction habit and you always need to know if something will fit.
And, in the bag currently by my side and for a reason which entirely escapes me, I have my eye prescription.
No make-up (because I can't be bothered). No comb (ditto). No tissues (because I give them to my daughter). No mobile phone (because I hate them. When I'm out I'm out and I don't want to be got).
Look into my daughter's bag and you find - a purse, a book in case she's bored, a small hairbrush, make-up bag, tissues (she has hayfever), a sanitary towel (she's my daughter, after all), a pink phone and her address book.
My late mother, in addition to the more usual things, always used to carry 'after-bite', baby wipes (which always came in useful when happening upon unsavory toilet facilities), nail scissors, peppermints and her glasses.
So, what about you???? Is your handbag a window to your soul? What's the oddest thing hiding in the depths of your bag and what secret does that reveal about you?
Natasha's latest Harlequin Romance Wanted: White Wedding is on the shelves in Australia now. It's available in the UK here. And in NA here!
Romantic Times Magazine says: 'Natasha Oakley's Wanted: White Wedding (4.5) has its share of deeply touching moments, but what makes it stand out are the humor and the wonderful characters.'
You can find out more about it on her website and you can hear her moan about her sheikhs and other assorted disasters by visiting her blog.
Her contribution to the Niroli series, 'The Tycoon's Princess Bride', is available here and won the Romantic Times Magazine Best Presents of 2007 and is nominated for a RITA®.
'Crowned: An Ordinary Girl' has finalled in the National Readers' Choice Awards.