So recently, I was in New York on business and I needed to buy a work bag. I packed hurriedly and without much planning (as always) and so oftentimes I don’t really know what I’m rolling with until I officially unpack.
When I realized that I did not pack my tote bag, which carried everything and has served me well. I went into a half panic/excitement because I knew I was going to have to buy myself a new (expensive) purse.
Chanel was my first stop . I have been OBSESSED with the Executive Tote (discontinued) and I had high hopes that someone at Chanel could provide me with a solution to my problem. This model has only been discontinued for a year so I was hopeful there were some floating around…especially in a city like New York.
To my dismay they said they couldn’t do anything to locate it and informed me that new styles would be launched in November. OBVIOUSLY unhappy, but desperate at this point, as I had already promised myself a new purse! 🙂 I allowed the sale associate to take me through a presentation of new , but awful bags. I’m very sorry to say this. Actually it pains me, but I’m finding that Chanel’s quality has dropped off in the last 3-4 years (their prices however have gone up, with UK seeing £1,ooo increase in its classic bag price point) .I went through about 5 purses , checking them inside and out , examining the sewing of the zippers and handles and also the feet . On examination, they truly could have been a purse from anywhere. I wasn’t impressed and a little disappointed as well. I felt like Chanel was becoming the new Louis Vuitton….
A little down, but still focused! I walk down Fifth until I got to Prada and to be honest, I stopped liking Prada from shopping in Barcelona a couple of summers back, but went inside anyway. Customer service was very good here and cheerful . The vibe was a bit more elevated I noted . It might have been lighting I can’t really place it, or perhaps the more youthful S.A’s on the floor, but the atmosphere was great. An S.A. approaches me and notes that I’m rushed and frazzled ( Remember that I brought no purse along as I was certain I would find what I wanted at Chanel and REALLY needed to get to work ) She assesses all of this and became quick to close the sale. I appreciate that bluntness and honesty in these things. I’m not a talker and I hate the inconvenient exchange when I am in a time crunch.
FINALLY I see a beautiful red tote bag with gold hardware. I’ve only ever had one other red purse and it too I bought haphazardly and in a mad rush. Here it is below.
It’s the Gucci Bamboo Daily Large . A side bag meant for Sunday’s , travel and rainy days 🙂 No, I don’t really like it either . The “bamboo” is plastic and the snap lock has broken. I’ve called Holt’s to ask if they could recommend someone to repair it and I’ve received no call back ( sorry Holt’s that’s where Saks really outshines you !) . Back to the Double Flap in red….Once I see it I’m attracted to it and nothing else. The S.A. agrees its gorgeous, but brings me other options. I didn’t like them so I stick with the red.
Obviously not a bad-looking bag while being very well constructed and good attention to detail. It’s tight stitched and waxed and the bag feels cemented together on account of that.
Here it is again ,sitting beside me as I sip a rose at Dream midtown.
Now, when put to use, this purse was another story.. I was scolded on 2 separate occasions by woman who thought I had left my bag wide open. I almost found myself explaining to them that it is just like that, but instead , being tired and a little drunk ( flying is hella boring) I really didn’t care to explain. Instead, I would gratefully call back “Oh gee, thanks!! ” and kept going.
The TRUTH is this bag was not very well thought out.
- The “double flap” is wide and spacious yes and that’s great,but Prada made no compensation for the need to PROTECT those items you are wanting to access easily. With you items in this purse, you are literally totally exposed . WIDE OPEN. This point is MAGNIFIED when you try to use the extra strap. If you haven’t gathered by now, this bag does not bear a “double flap” of any sort. It’s essentially two long chasms divided by a single envelope.
- I’m 5’3 and with the strap at its shortest hole in its belt, this purse sits too low on my body for the proportions I like overall. It drags my silhouette line so much, it’s just not flattering.
- No organization. Aside from the centre pocket which is a fight to get into due to the ever-erect tote handles , there is nowhere to put Chapstick and coins etc. Everything just gathers to the bottom in a cheap and audible mess. There are days while running errands, that I’m sure I must sound like a Roman warrior flush from his recent winnings! It’s hilarious , but gross you know? The vibrant red colour is gorgeous and I never get tired of looking at this bag. As I don’t feel that way about my neutral-toned and more expensive purses, this is nice for me.
- When you touch and handle this bag, it feels solid. It keeps its shape well and is easy to clean. Would I recommend this bag ? Not really. If Prada could make a few tweaks to it, I believe it has the chance to really stand out. Am I still waiting for the new Chanel Executive tote to launch? At the time of this writing they have released a couple new variations on the Executive and neither I really love. The outside pocket dipping is so ugly and useless and I don’t understand it from a design perspective. Also,they are not making them in gold hardware ( I can’t wear silver). Everything else is okay.
Will I keep hoping for Chanel to bring back the old “Executive Tote ? Yes I will. I am hopeful they’ll revisit manufacturing the “Cerf” model specifically which I ADORE and believe needed no amendments.