Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Perfect Choice

I should say, straight up here, that this post is mostly for the women who love purses, bags, or other cool carriers of our stuff.  Though I do acknowledge that men can have, and no doubt love, their bags, too. 

Yesterday I got a UPS delivery that made me smile with a kid-at-Christmas joy.  I have a deep affinity for the perfect purse.  It won't be like everyone else's; you'll never see me toting a cookie cutter bag.

There is this amazing company, J. Peterman, with exceptional clothes, and other very unique things.  I can't afford 95% of it.  I get their catalog because each page is a mini short story of romance, exciting travel, beautiful descriptive bits of information about the item, and how Peterman discovered it as he cruises the highways and byway of the world.

I'm not totally sure there's a real man behind the brand.  But if there is?  Holy crap.  This is someone I would love to meet, or at the very least travel with.

Here's an example, one page from the catalog. Every page is a different, exotic, wonderful little vignette...


Fluent American.

Paper Moon.


Line to get in is long.

(I’m in already). Fragrant garlic, razor thin carpaccio and brittle sheets of Parmesan on their way. I watch the ad types swarming at front. Very thin, dressed in blacks. Too young to look so knowing.

I’m saved from Weltschmerz by a girl I didn’t even know.

Obviously American, and alone, dressed in an elegant but simple linen dress, furiously eating spaghetti. And she’s laughing. Laughing at the same time, eating and reading a paperback held down with one elbow. All this, without a trace of self consciousness. Her charisma as intoxicating as the aromas around us.

I watch her stroll out, as did others. In shock, we all recover differently. Some drink three espressos. Some order more grappa.

I mindlessly sketch on my cloth napkin.

American Linen Dress (No. 3700). Made with pure soft linen, the top and bottom elegantly crafted with slightly different textures. Lining is satin. Real leather belt with antique brass finish buckle adds sophistication. Center back invisible zipper. Topstitching throughout for quality. Imported.


I look forward to these catalogs like they're the newest best seller by my favorite author.

So. Back to purses and girly totes. Peterman is having a huge sale on their website.  I get an email, and as if someone can read my mind, there it is: the bag I have coveted for months, originally priced at $200. There was no way it could be mine. I'm realistic, not frivolous or foolish with my money.  But man, I loved that bag.  It's got a hamsa beaded on the front in a multitude of colors and sparkles and embroidery.  It's unique and oh, so cool. 

(The hamsa is an iconic design of a five-fingered hand; an ancient talisman of protection.  I have a beautiful necklace in this design that I've had for years, and I'm pretty sure my next tattoo will be a hamsa--similar in size to my wee Buddha.)

Originally $200.  Now on sale for $32.  What can I say?

My Hamsa bag, delivered yesterday...

It's big, it's beautiful.  Leather and heavy canvas, with beads and sparkles, and hearts, flowers, birds.  And right in the middle, the hamsa.  I made the perfect choice.  And I'm still smiling...


  1. So exciting! I think I just may request a catalog...

    1. Do it!! They are perfect little gems, and so much fun to read, and drool over all the cool stuff.