Thursday, September 27, 2007

Alliterative Reader Mail: Sloping Shoulders Not Stylish

Here's a question for you. I just got a job downtown in a mid-size city. Because I'll be parking far, far away from my office (curses), I'm looking for a stylish -- yet ergonomically correct -- bag to tote my work goodies. Preferably something hands-free, because all these years of lugging around the kitchen sink in my purse have made my shoulders kinda slope-y. Everything I've seen has either been too laptop-y, too manly or just plain ugly. And my North Face backpack is really going to cramp my style when I have to sling it over my DVF wrap dress.
What do you think, oh-fashionable-one? Any suggestions?
Fashionably fondly,

Dearest Becky,

First of all, congratulations on the job! Second of all, if you decide to start a My Back and Shoulders are Screwed Up Due to a Lifetime of Extremely Cute But Ergonomically Disastrous Handbags and Maybe I Should Have Listened to My Dad After All Even Though He Recommended One of Those Rolling Backpacks FOR THE LOVE OF GOD support group, I'll be there.

So here are some options for you (and me):

As you know, it can be tough to make a backpack look grown-up and stylish. Kate Moss could probably do it, but Kate Moss could also wear a traffic cone on her head, and within a few days a slew of less expensive traffic cones would be available at Topshop and the Gap. I do think that a classic leather backpack has some fashion potential, and of course, it'll go with everything:

This one can also be converted to a one strap sling style, which may blow the ergonomic thing all to hell, but, in times when you slip back into old fashion-over-function habits, could look pretty boho cool. God I'm such an enabler.
Derek Alexander Leather Backpack, $180,

We'll focus mainly on messenger bags, which I've found are absolutely not comfortable when filled with three hundred pounds of textbooks (each day I get closer to the rolling backpack, damnit), but would be great as a work bag/purse.

Not laptop-y, manly, or ugly. What a find!
Kyoto Messenger bag, $60, here.

LeSportsac has some rad bags with straps long enough to wear across your body. Their website is also superfun, because it shows the bag style as a white canvas, and then, when you choose the color or design, splashes it onto the bag. I spent a lot of time playing with that instead of doing my homework, which is regrettable.

I might buy this one for myself:

"Courier," $88,

Here's a different style in basic black (welcome to Boringville), but there are different color and pattern options as well:

"Charlie," $80,

Less than thirty bucks, but would look right at home slung over that DVF wrap dress.
Dakine "Lola," $27,

And I thought I'd throw this one in, just in case your new job is, like, 2nd baseman for the Yankees, and you've got a little extra cheddah to spend:

I could stare at this for hours. Hours I should probably spend training myself not to say things like, "cheddah."
Gucci Brown Suede Messenger Bag, $796 (usually $1000--what a deal!),


Birgitte said...

I have been ogling the fantastic messenger bags on the past couple of days, especially these:

So many cute bags and such agony to decide!

Tre said...

My ex-wife has the Derek Alexander Backpack. She works in advertising sales and, along with my three daughters, is very fashion literate. She is on her third of these and loves it. Doesn't look little girly, but also doesn't look old and frumpy. Goes well, I think, with everything from conservative business suit to sweat suit. But, that's just a dumb guys opinion.

amber at painfullyhip said...

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i love you. there. i said it.

Kori said...

they're kind of sporty, but the timbuktu bags are really comfortable and the colors are customizable =) check out their website if you want

Gwen said...

I recently helped a soon-to-be ex-coworker find a rolling briefcase, because she's using the metro to get to her new job. My favorite was McKlein's Glen Ellyn, and not only because it comes in leather of every color from baby blue to pumpkin orange. It's feminine, can fit a laptop but doesn't really look like a laptop case, and it's detachable from the wheels, so you can use it as a regular briefcase (handles and shoulder-strap) if you want.

Anonymous said...

You might try too, the work bags there are affordable and classic and wear very well. You can typically find a selection on eBay as well. Several grads in my program use Levenger bags and they seem to serve them well. I had a little suede messenger from them a few years back that I loved.

Becky said...

OMG, thank you soooo much for all of the great ideas. I love them all! Sad to say that my new job is NOT, in fact, second baseman for the Yankees. Because that, of course, was totally my favorite.

Thanks again! Now I just need to decide which one to order... oh, the horror... (maybe I need one black-based and one brown-based, no?)
:) Becky

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