To be honest, I wasn't that thrilled when my great aunt presented me with three see-through handbags that had been sitting in her closet for around thirty years. Don't get me wrong; I normally love kooky retro accessories, but I'd always felt that clear purses, like sanitary napkin belts, were an idea best left in history.
But one fateful day about a week ago, there was an unfortunate granola bar explosion in my usual purse. Its understudy, a bright green flower-printed BCBG bag, clashed horribly with my outfit and I was already twenty minutes late. In a panic, I dumped the contents of the soiled purse into one of the clear bags on the floor and headed out the door.
Little did I know that this decision would change my life in a number of ways. I shall describe them in a melodramatic fashion here:
I now lead a life of color and versatility. My love for wild accessories had sort of forced me into dressing around my purses. It's tough to add a giant patent yellow handbag to an already colorful outfit and not look like Mimi Bobeck. Therefore, I found myself wearing a lot of black.
But my clear purse goes with everything. Like Predator, it takes on the look of its surroundings, making that fire engine red tanktop or crazy Pucci-print mini dress totally wearable.
I now lead an honest life. No more do I cram my squalor and disorganization behind a creamy leather facade and walk around as if I were a tidy, functional adult. Nope. Now the contents of my purse, and therefore my personality, are right out there, unedited, unashamed. In the words of Cosmo Kramer, "I'm out there, Jerry, and I'm lovin' every minute of it!"
I now lead a life that encourages collaboration. The other day after I got my hair cut, I made my way to the front desk and started digging for the salon gift certificate my boyfriend had given me for Christmas. I had my giant purse on the counter and was about to launch into my little tee-hee-how-did-that-receipt-from-1998-get-in-here? shtick that I do in order to fool cashiers into thinking I'm more charming than annoying (it rarely, if ever, works), when the woman at the desk pointed to the left corner of my clear bag.
"Are you looking for this?" she said.
I turned the purse around to see what she was talking about, and sure enough, there was my gift certificate, pressed up against the clear plastic. "Yes! Oh my gosh, thank you!"
We both smiled. A messy purse can make for a lonely existence, but a clear purse can turn a potential enemy into an eager teammate.
If you're one of the three other people in the world who don't hate see-through bags with a fiery passion and are interested in making the clear choice (heh. heh.), here are some options for you:
An excellent starter model. Very vintage and cute.
See Thru Coin Purse, $4.99, here.
I think this one is just adorable:
Clear Tote, $26.80, forever21.com
Adi Designs Ebisu Collection Clear Satchel, $39.99, overstock.com
No matter how much you despise this trend, a see-through cosmetics pouch is one incarnation that actually makes a lot of sense, since locating a certain eyeshadow can often prove as difficult as finding the meaning of life:
If you're reeeaaaalllllyyy into the clear bag thing, you could go with Chanel:
But you probably shouldn't. Sure I love transparent bags, but two grand for some plastic, chain, and a logo is a bit steep (and by "a bit steep," I mean, "fuckin' crazy.").