Not too long ago I was on the hunt for the perfect tote. And by hunt, I mean the kind of hunt that causes me to whine about it every day to my husband, uttering complaints about the perfect tote not being out there, wishing my life was easier. (of course I jest…)
I am a woman of large bags… I have a huge ol’ wallet, several little bags, a huge ol’ camera, and lots of Transformer Rescue Bots to carry along with me, so I’ve got to have a bag that can handle the strain. Oh, and sometimes I like to throw in my lap top and my iPad. And maybe a book. And the carrying around of more than one bag is for the birds. I almost wish for the diaper bag days again so I could just stuff all my treasures in there with the diapers.
The problem with tote shopping is that if you actually put foot to pavement, there just aren’t that many places to physically try on a well made tote (no pun intended) to see how it hangs and feels. I hit the mall one Sunday afternoon and tried on a couple of totes just to get the idea, but even then, they weren’t really what I was looking for. So mostly my shopping consisted of clicking on websites and using visualization techniques in order to figure out if I liked this or that bag. As well as sending every single one I liked to Naomi via Facebook messenger for her yay or nay.
The ones I had pretty much narrowed it down to were these…I loved each of them for different reasons.
1// Madewell Transport Tote, English Saddle color (beautiful, simple, nice size)
2// The Go Exchange Leather Saddle Tote (sturdy, lined with a laptop divider)
3// Baggu Oversized Leather Tote Bag (roomy, pretty)
4// Live Fashionable Mamuye Tote (rustic and beautiful)
I also looked at the Fossil leather totes and the Frye artisan leather tote (way out of my price range, but quite nice) when I went to the mall. But I finally landed on the Madewell tote. And I’m so glad I did. I love it! It carries beautifully, sits exactly where I need it to sit and I can reach everything on the bottom of the bag with it still hanging on my shoulder. And I can stuff it to the brim and it makes no complaint. It stands up all by itself, no matter how full or empty it is.
I really, really, really wanted to buy a tote that supported women in third world countries trying to make a living; companies such as the Go Exchange or Life FashionABLE, because their mission is so wonderful. But it just ended up that my favorite one was the Madewell bag. And so I decided I would get the bag I really wanted, and find other products to purchase from those companies in the future to help support these beautiful, artistic women.
Naomi purchased the Mamuye tote, and honestly it is soooo close to the Madewell. The biggest difference is that her leather is more of a suede. When I was visiting her in Mexico City last weekend, I seriously dug my hand around in her bag a few times thinking it was mine. And we looked like twins everywhere we went.
I’m happy with my bag, and I can tell it’s going to last a really long time (probably longer than I really want it to and I’ll have to make up some new lame excuse for wanting a new bag next year…)